How big should pendant lights be over a kitchen island? [A Quick Guide]

kitchen island pendant lights

If you’re considering buying some exciting new pendant lights for your kitchen, you may be wondering what the ideal size should be based on your kitchen and kitchen island size.

With so many different sizes and styles available, it can be difficult to know which one is the right fit for your space.

In this blog post, we will take a look at what size pendant lights should be for your size kitchen island, as well as suggesting a few other things to consider when buying pendant lights for your kitchen.

Let’s dive in!

How big should pendant lights be over a kitchen island? (Quick Answer)

Your lights shouldn’t be so large that they overpower its surroundings and take up too much space in your kitchen. Equally, they shouldn’t be so small that they get lost within a much larger space.

Nordic Coloured Glass Pendant Light

To give a rough idea of measurements:

For small kitchen islands

For a smaller kitchen island, a single pendant light may be sufficient. In these cases, a small pendant light with a diameter of 12 inches or so would be appropriate for the space.


For medium-sized kitchen islands

For a medium-sized kitchen island, we would recommend two or three pendant lights. These lights ideally should be slightly larger than those used for a smaller island - a diameter of around 14-16 inches would be good.

However, the size of each pendant light itself is not super important here, as you have more than one, meaning you’ll see each as part of a much larger kitchen lighting feature as opposed to 2-3 individual lights.

So, if you find a smaller pendant light you absolutely adore (like our _______ for instance!), you don’t need to worry too much about their diameter. If you do find they are too small after installing, you can always add an additional light to your feature!


For large kitchen islands

And lastly, for a kitchen island that’s on the larger size, three or more pendant lights would be our recommendation, with each light having a diameter of 18-20 inches or more.

Unlike medium-sized islands however, we would try to stick with larger individual lights – if you try to go for smaller lights, you’ll end up needing so many of them that it will start to affect your kitchen’s overall design. Not what you want!


Other Considerations

As well as how big your pendant lights should be for your kitchen island, there are a few other factors we recommend you consider:


How low do your pendant lights hang?

An additional factor to consider is the height of the lights when they are hung from the ceiling, also known as how much of a drop they provide.

Pendant lights above a kitchen island should be hung at a height that is low enough that the light they provide adequately covers the whole island, while at the same time not so low that they obstruct the view of people sat at the island.

So as a general rule, the bottom of your lights should be about 30-36 inches above the island’s countertop.


How powerful are your pendant lights?

Another thing to consider is how powerful your pendant lights are – aka, how much light they give off.

The more powerful your lights are (which will be determined by the Wattage of your lightbulbs), the higher up you’ll want them to hang, so that they’re not too bright for the people sat underneath.

Alternatively, you can consider lower Wattage bulbs, or using dimmable bulbs so that you can dim your lights to the perfect level every time you use them!


What style pendant lights are you after?

Last but not least, when selecting pendant lights for your kitchen island, make sure to choose a style that complements the overall design of your kitchen.

Consider features like the color, material, and finish of the lights and make sure they match with the other elements in the room – the last thing you want are beautiful pendant lights that look out of place with their surroundings!