What height to install Wall Lights?

Rothschild & Bickers, Nouveau Wall Lights in Tea glass - Photography by Simon Bevan

Wall arm sconces are currently having a design renaissance, no longer seen as old fashioned and outdated, they are now one of the most sought after and popular lighting solutions. From adding a layer of flattering ambient light, compensating for inefficient overhead lighting or just for decorative effect, wall arm sconces are a flexible and stylish addition to most spaces. Whether you are renovating a period house or just moved into a new build, it is more than likely you'll want to put up a wall light sconce, so here is a quick positioning guide to help your installation go smoothly!


In practical terms wall arm sconces offer an attractive solution for entrance hallways, stairwells and landings in need of more illumination. Larger family houses often have a chandelier or overhead pendant in the staircase void, which does not distribute light evenly throughout the space. These areas are often cold and neutral in decor. Adding a decorative glass wall light sconce can make them feel cozy and inviting, especially on dark winter nights. They can be useful to highlight a feature mirror or console table.

Tips: Install wall lights 168-172cm from the floor depending on ceiling height. Leaving no more than 180cm between each wall sconce in a long hallway or down a long staircase will ensure that light fills the entire space, avoiding gaps. Make sure to note which way the door swings when placing next to entrances. 

Hand blown clear glass wall sconce light by Rothschild & Bickers

Interior by Diso Design, Le Matilda in Mâcon - Petite Ball Wall Light in Clear diamond glass


Wall arm sconces or pendant lights are a popular choice for bedside lighting. A good option for night time readers, less intense than the overhead lighting and great if your partner does not share your passion for novels. Adding a switch/dimmer next to the bed is advisable so that the user can decrease the brightness as it gets later at night. Tips: When hanging a bedside wall arm sconce or pendant, a good height is 76-90cm above the top of the mattress. This translates to just above shoulder height when sitting against the bedhead. We recommend no more than 30cm away from the side of the bed but this will vary some depending on the design of the sconce. 


Wall arm sconces can be a versatile source of light in large rooms, to highlight features such as a fireplace or just to illuminate far off corners and dark nooks. Because they are wall mounted, they also make a great option for rooms with a low ceiling or problematic vaulted roof. Textured glass and decorative metalwork can be a great way to add colour, ambience and layering into your scheme. Tips: Wall light sconces in large rooms should be installed 152-182cm from the floor depending on the height of the room. Adding a separate dimmer switch will allow you to focus light on feature areas.  


You want the most flattering light when powdering your nose and a decorative wall light sconce is definitely the best solution. The most popular trend is either side of the vanity mirror. Powder room design is often the most creative space in a house, the place to go all out and impress your guests. Tips: Bathroom sconces should be positioned 168-182cm from the floor, though this can be adjusted based on your height to be around eye level.

Interior by Diso Design, Le Matilda in Mâcon - Petite Pop Wall Lights in Clear and Tea diamond glass

Shop the look