13 Dining Room Lighting Ideas to Brighten Up Your Space

dining room lighting

Design: Emily Henderson Design, Photo: Sara Tramp

It's no secret that the right light fixture can instantly transform a room. In fact, as our regular readers are already well aware, we here at MyDomaine have spilled quite a bit of ink on the topic — from how swapping out a standard ceiling fixture with a stylish pendant can upgrade a rental living room, plugging in a paper lantern floor lamp can add ambiance to a bedroom, and installing a set of sconces can elevate a bathroom — and, as you've probably guessed, the dining room is no exception.

But don't just take our word for it — sought-after interior designer Emily Henderson agrees that a standout light fixture can make all the difference in the space. "I love a bold dining room light fixture," she tells MyDomaine. "It's such an easy way to bring in a ton of style with just one piece — and isn't that the dream?" Although, we've seen the rise of the pendant over the past few years, Henderson predicts one lighting trend, in particular, will be in every stylish home in 2020. "I definitely love anything a bit oversized, but I think 2020 is going to bring the wicker, natural fiber lampshade back," divulges the designer. (You heard it here first!)

I love a bold dining room light fixture. It's such an easy way to bring in a ton of style with just one piece — and isn't that the dream?

Convinced? Keep scrolling to get inspired by 13 dining room lighting ideas that will, quite literally, brighten up your space. Spanning sconces, pendants, chandeliers, and more, we guarantee there's something for everyone on this list.

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Natural Fiber Pendant

As Emily Henderson predicted, the natural fiber pendant is having a moment. Here, interior designer Mandy Cheng installed a woven pendant in her rental to replace a stainless steel fixture. "I strongly suggest asking the landlord if you can do the same because it makes the biggest difference," Cheng told MyDomaine.

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Paper Lantern Pendant

Gain inspiration from this space designed by Melanie Burstin and install a paper lantern pendant light fixture above your dining room table for instant ambiance. Although the paper lantern trend has been on the rise for a while now, we don't foresee the iconic fixture fading from the design scene anytime soon.

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Globe Pendant

Follow Erin Hiemstra of Apartment 34's lead and opt for a globe pendant that provides both direct and ambient illumination in the dining room. Here, the natural fiber pendant lends a laid-back sensibility to the space that dials down the formality a notch — offering a functional yet stylish lighting solution.

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Oversized Pendant

Allow interior designer Raili Clasen to demonstrate the impact an oversized pendant can have on a small space. In this dining room, a large-scale pendant complete with a jet-black shade brings the drama, complementing a statement wall outfitted with black inkblot wallpaper and a set of dark dining chairs.

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Lantern Pendant

Another case for opting for an oversized light fixture, this dining room designed by Studio McGee features a large lantern pendant. Situated above the table, the lantern draws the eye up, highlighting the light and airy aesthetic imparted by the wall-to-ceiling windows, and essentially serving as a focal point in the room.

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Mini Pendant

Although we just made the case for oversized pendants, this space is proof that a mini pendant can have just as bold an effect on a dining room. Take style notes from this interior designed by Olivia Thébaut and don't shy away from opting for a small-scale fixture if it's better suited to your space (or your taste).

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Pendant Chandelier

Part pendant, part chandelier, this stunning light fixture is proof that you can have it all. Now, let this Instagram-worthy dining room designed by Studio DB to convince you once and for all that the right fixture can have an instant, high-impact effect that takes an already well-designed space to the next level.

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Pendant Chandelier

In case you're looking for further proof that a pendant chandelier really is the best of both worlds, feast your eyes on this stunning space designed by Sissy + Marley Interiors. In this dining rom, a pendant chandelier delivers all the drama of a chandelier and all the modernity of a pendant. Need we say more?

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Modern Pendant Chandelier

A linear light fixture, like the modern pendant chandelier seen in this space designed by interior designer Joyce Downing Pickens of JDP Interiors, is particularly fitting for a dining room where a long table is the focal point. It casts direct light along the length of the table, ensuring no one is ever dining in the dark.

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Wall-Mounted Sconces

Take a cue from interior designer Leanne Ford and forgo typical dining room light fixture options (i.e., chandeliers and pendants) in favor of an unexpected — but equally chic — choice: a set of wall-mounted sconces. Here, mid-century modern-inspired fixtures light up an updated traditional style dining room.

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Two-Light Swing Arm Lamp

This space designed by Arent & Pyke makes a compelling case for yet another unexpected dining room light fixture: a two-light swing arm lamp. As seen here, installed on a wall adjacent to the dining space, this fixture is especially well-suited for adding ambient lighting to a room with multiple windows where obstructing the view isn't an option.

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Statement Chandelier + Wall-Mounted Sconces

Leave it to Park & Oak to masterfully demonstrate how to layer lighting in a dining room. As you can see here, a statement chandelier hangs above the dining table, providing a source of direct light, while a pair of wall sconces illuminate the banquet space, shining ambient light on the space and casting a glow over the space's wall art.

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Art Deco-Inspired Pendant

The standout feature in interior designer Ginny Macdonald's dining room — and there's a lot of competition for that title in this well-appointed room (that dark blue paint! that bar hutch! that vintage map!) — is the art deco-inspired pendant. This space just goes to show that lighting really is the jewelry of a room.

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