Do you want to hear the first thing I choose for my house- even before I moved in? The lighting. Yep- I choose every single light fixture all at once and it’s been such a nice way to start rooms off on the right foot. I’m going to show you how to pick lights that flow nicely together across rooms and that don’t feel too matchy matchy. Here’s how to choose light fixtures for your home.
First off, why is lighting something I prioritize? Because proper lighting can enhance your home- it can pull the design together, it can make a room look bigger, it can make a home feel cohesive. A good fan can cool off a room. The perfect sconce can make a dark space feel cozy. Lighting really enhances a home is so many ways!
how to choose light fixtures for your home
So maybe you’re moving like I did. Or maybe all of your lights are dated and you need a fresh start. Or perhaps just a few lights need changed. Either way, I’m going to walk you through how to choose lights that you’ll love and work nicely from room to room.
step 1- choose your statement piece
Which room are you most excited to put a light in? For the majority of people, this is the dining room or pendant lights over an island. Pick that light first! It should be easy to choose since this is what you can’t wait to see. For me, I’m a brass lover so I like to hop on kichler.com (where I get all my lights) and see all the chandeliers narrowed down by a gold and brass finish.
From there I narrow it down. For example, I have a round table so I think something that mirrors that would work best. I like modern lighting so anything super traditional is eliminated. The feel I want is sleek and clean and feels fresh and fun. These are the two I ended up with, the Pim and Trentino.
Usually I just shop online, but I was able to see both of these in person when I visited Kichler’s Dallas Market in January! Can I tell you, seeing so many beautiful lights all in one spot was amazing. I ended up liking the Pim more because it’s a little softer with the rounded glass. Plus they remind me of sea urchins which seems perfect for Florida. So that was my starting point.
I ordered the Pim in the 5 light configuration (it comes in a few different sizes and shapes). My husband and I hung it and it quickly became my favorite part of the room. It’s the jewelry in the space!
And then, yesterday, I hung some wallpaper and the space really came together! I thought I’d show you a sneak peek! This room still has some updates that are needed- new windows, I’m planning on tiling on the wall behind the shelves, changing the shelf bracket color. It’s not perfect, but I’m in love with it already!
step 2- take note
Do you see how many choices I made for one light? Those help direct the rest of the lighting plan. Note the era, style, shape, and finish of the light you selected. That’ll be your cheat sheet! These elements are what you want to repeat through the house. The other light fixtures don’t need to check all the same boxes, but they should have one or two of the same main characteristics.
Next, make a master list of the lights you need in your house. For me, besides the dining room, it was two bedrooms, a bathroom, living room, and hallway.
step 3- bathrooms
After the kitchen lighting was selected, I knew the bathroom would be a great spot to focus on. Bathroom lighting has come so far! This is another room where lighting can be like art in the space. There are so many options- there’s no need to have builder basic lights anymore!
For my bathroom, I repeated the same steps as above. I choose bath/vanity lights on Kichler’s website and narrowed it down to brass and gold lights only.
Then, I tried to repeat the circular shape from the dining room chandelier and found a round vanity light I like- the Brettin!
Again, I was able to see these in person and fell in love! They’re on trend and I think they’ll help modernize my 1950’s bathroom. I haven’t done anything to this room besides the light, but just you wait. It’ll be a cute room one day!
step 4- bedrooms
Can I tell you the light that took the longest to select? The fans for the bedrooms. We live in sunny Florida so I figured, a fan is a must have. Sure, I love pretty and decorative lights in bedrooms, but fans are so practical! Kichler has a million fans and honestly, it was hard to not just pick what I had in my last house. Which is fine- to fall in love with a light and repeat it. But I wanted to try something new.
This time, I wanted the fan to kind of disappear into the ceiling. So I looked something all white, modern, and with a round light. Kichler has a ton of options with this criteria. I ended up going with the Sola because I love the sleek look.
See how even though there’s no brass, I’m repeating the same era and shape as the dining room chandelier? This way, it’ll still relate to the rest of the lights.
When you’re buying a ceiling fan, make sure to get the right size for the room. The whole point is that the fan will cool off the room so getting the correct size is key. For reference, the master bedroom has a 54″ fan and Don’s room is smaller so he has a 44″. To figure out what size to get, calculate the square footage of the room (length x width).
ceiling fan size guide
Square footage Fan Size
Under 144 square feet Under 42″ fan
145-225 square feet 44″-50″ fan
226-400 square feet Over 50″ fan
Over 400 square feet Over 60″ fan
I think it looks great in both bedrooms! The fan is quiet and the whole thing is very stable (which is a big advancement over the last fan here). It fades into the ceiling. But it also relates to the lamps in both spaces which is visually pleasing. This fan comes with a remote that goes where the light switch is so there’s no strings to pull. Yay for clean lines!
Also, I ordered a little remote that I mounted on my nightstand so that I can turn off the fan or light in bed. Aka the greatest luxury ever!
step 5- living room
For the living room, lighting was important because there are no lights in here! Why oh why do older homes not have any overhead or hardwired lights in them?! So I opted for sconces. Luckily Kichler has a sconce- the Ellerbeck that can be hardwired or plugged in!
We might hire an electrician in the future to hardwire these in, but for now, the plug works great! I painted the cords to blend in and am so grateful for the cozy light at night! They come in black and nickel too, but I stuck with brass to match the dining room and bathroom fixtures. I figured the round shade counts as a matching shape too!
My hallway is another space I haven’t touched yet except the light! I have big plans to paint the walls and the ceiling grid white. Then paint the doors pink and get a cute floor runner. But at least the flush mount is looking cute!
I choose the Tollis for the hall. This is what will go in the kitchen too when that is ready to be renovated. Personally, I like repeating lights in different areas of a home if they call for the same type of light. Did you also notice how this one is both white and brass so it looks nice with the other lights in my home? And again, I went for a round shape.
Side note, if you want a more in-depth look at the different types of lights, this post will be super helpful! It goes over each type of light (like flush mounts and sconces) and where they should each should be used. Plus there’s a quiz to help you choose the right one for each spot in your house.
step 7- make a mood board
Once you go through and select each light for each room, take a minute to make a mood board (I have a whole tutorial on how to do that here). This way, you’ll be able to see the lights all together and it’s a quick way to spot any issues. Hopefully though, it’ll illustrate how nice they work with each other.
I also like to make separate mood boards for each room so I can see how each lighting element looks with the other items I’ve selected for the room. For example, here’s how the dining room mood board looks-
After that, if you’re happy with your selections, it’s time to order. Good lighting is an investment and is 100% worth the splurge to get the correct item. A great perk about lights is that in under an hour, they can be wired in. It is such a quick fix for the major upgrade the room will receive.
How do you pick out lighting for your home? Do you buy them all at once or piece by piece? Let me know in the comments!
Thank you so much to Kichler Lighting for sponsoring this post! All thoughts and opinions are my own.