Lighting Your House With Sconces
In a lot of cases, the difference between a drab, gloomy hallway and a bright, attractive one is all in the way you light them. This is why sconces are particularly popular for use in halls, stairways, and other rooms of the house. Sconces also frequently show up to cast additional light where clarity is needed — in the bathroom adjacent to the mirror, for instance. While lots of Tucson homeowners think sconces are a great idea, it’s only when they decide to install them that they realize they need to know a lot more about these fixtures to use them properly.
How High Should Sconces Be?
Different styles of wall sconce are designed to throw their light up or down. Some do both. Almost all sconces share one feature in common, though: They don’t look too impressive if you can see down into the fixture from above. Most sconces are open at the top, meaning you’ll expose some dreary wiring and the raw light bulb if you place your sconces too low. You don’t want your sconces to be so high that nobody notices them, though! Vaulted ceilings have become more popular in Arizona so be conscious of that when you design your room.
Most wall sconces are hung at a height somewhere between five and a half and six feet off the floor. In rooms with high ceilings, sconces are sometimes mounted higher. Up-facing sconces can provide considerable light if they’re placed so that their output reflects off the ceiling.
In areas where viewing a sconce from above is inevitable (e.g. in a stairwell), you have two options. You could select a fully-enclosed design. These are generally expensive, though, and you might want to match your stair sconces with others in your home. In these cases, you can install a diffuser or louver to conceal the workings of the fixture and prevent unwanted glare.
In hallways and other long rooms, sconces should be placed roughly eight to 10 feet apart. Where you’re installing sconces along two facing walls, alternate them so that the fixtures on one wall fall in between those on the other. In spots where you are using sconces singly or in pairs, spacing is less important than symmetry. Sconces used to distinguish a point of interest (e.g. a mirror or piece of art) should be installed so that each sconce is the same distance from the center.