Expert Tips for Choosing and Installing Wall Sconces

Expert Tips for Choosing and Installing Wall Sconces

Tips for Choosing and Installing Wall Sconces

Wall sconces are a flexible and beautiful addition to any area, providing both useful illumination and ornamental appeal. Whether you want to add vintage wall sconces to your living room, bathroom wall sconces for a spa-like atmosphere, or kitchen wall sconces to improve your cooking environment, choosing the right fixtures and properly installing them is critical.

Here's a step-by-step guide to help you make the best decisions and complete a flawless installation.

1. Determine the Purpose

Understanding the primary function of your wall sconces can help influence your decision process. Are you searching for ambient, task, or accent lighting?

For example:

  • Ambient Lighting: Vintage wall sconces with gentle, diffused lighting may create a welcoming environment in your living room or hallway. They provide the predominant source of light, casting a pleasant glow across the space.
  • Task Lighting: Bathroom wall sconces flanking a mirror offer concentrated lighting for grooming duties, allowing you to see well when shaving or applying cosmetics. Kitchen wall sconces mounted above counters may brighten your workstation, making cooking and food preparation safer and more fun. 
  • Accent Lighting: Use sconces to showcase artwork, and architectural elements, or to give a decorative touch to your home. These sconces may provide depth and character to your area, highlighting certain components.

2. Choose the Right Style

The design of your wall sconces should complement the overall aesthetic of your place. Consider the current décor and select fixtures that will improve it.

For example:

  • Vintage Wall Sconces: Ideal for bringing a touch of traditional elegance into a space. They look great in classic, rustic, or eclectic settings, and their timeless charm complements a variety of décor styles.
  • Modern Wall Sconces: Sleek, minimalist designs for contemporary and modern environments. These sconces are frequently designed with clean lines and subtle elegance, making them appropriate for a modern style. 
  • Transitional Wall Sconces: Combining classic and modern components is appropriate for areas with a variety of styles. These adaptable fixtures may combine many design components to create a coherent effect.

3. Consider the Size and Scale

The wall sconces' size and scale should be appropriate to the room and surrounding furnishings. Oversized sconces can overpower a tiny room, and too small sconces may not give enough light or visual effect.

For example:

  • Measure the wall space where the sconce will be positioned to ensure that it fits properly without crowding. Consider the wall's height and breadth, as well as the size of the adjacent furnishings.
  • Sconces in bathrooms should be set at eye level (60-65 inches above the floor) to give even illumination for grooming. To preserve balance and practicality, ensure that the sconces are the suitable size for the mirror and vanity area.

4. Think About Placement and Height

Proper placement and height are crucial for both functionality and aesthetics.

General Guidelines:

  • Living Rooms and Hallways: Install sconces 5-6 feet above the floor and equally placed around the wall. This height gives enough light without beaming straight into people's eyes.
  • Bathrooms: To decrease facial shadows, place sconces on either side of the mirror. The sconces should be installed at eye level to promote equal illumination and reduce harsh shadows. 
  • Kitchens: Sconces can be placed above counters or open shelves to give job illumination while remaining out of the way. Consider the cabinet height and the positioning of other lighting fixtures to create a well-lit workstation.

5. Select the Right Bulbs

Choosing the proper bulbs may significantly improve the effectiveness and atmosphere of your wall sconces.


  • Color Temperature: For a warm, friendly atmosphere, use bulbs with a color temperature of 2700K to 3000K. These bulbs provide a mellow, pleasant light that is suitable for living areas and bedrooms. Cooler temperatures (3500K to 4000K) are more beneficial for task lighting, such as in the bathroom or kitchen, as they provide crisper, more concentrated light.
  • Brightness: Ensure that the bulbs produce enough light for the desired function. Brightness is measured in lumens, therefore, select bulbs with a greater lumen output for jobs that require more light. Dimmable lights allow you to alter the light intensity to create the right mood.

6. Plan the Installation

Proper installation is essential for your wall sconces' safety and effectiveness. If you are not comfortable with electrical work, it is preferable to hire a professional.

Installation Tips:

  • Electrical Wiring: Proper installation is essential for your wall sconces' safety and effectiveness. If you are uncomfortable with electrical work, it is preferable to hire a professional.
  • Mounting: Use the necessary mounting hardware and anchors to fix the sconces to the wall. Follow the manufacturer's instructions to achieve the best results. To prevent mishaps, ensure that the sconces are level and firmly fastened.
  • Testing: After installation, test the sconces to ensure they function properly and produce the required lighting effect. Adjust the angle or location as needed to provide optimal lighting.


How do you choose the right style of wall sconces? 

When selecting wall sconces, think about your room's overall décor and style. Vintage wall sconces give timeless beauty to traditional or rustic settings, and modern sconces with streamlined designs complement contemporary settings. Transitional sconces incorporate characteristics of both forms, making them suitable for various design sensibilities.

What is the best placement for bathroom wall sconces? 

Bathroom wall sconces are ideally placed on each mirror side, at eye level (60-65 inches from the floor). This offers consistent illumination for grooming chores and decreases shadows on the face, resulting in better sight. 

How do you install wall sconces safely? 

To install wall sconces properly, check that the electrical wiring is suitable and switch off the power at the circuit breaker before beginning. Use the proper mounting gear, follow the manufacturer's instructions, and consider hiring a professional if you're not experienced with electrical work. After installation, test the fixtures to ensure they are properly functioning. 

How can lighting be used to make a small room appear larger? 

Lighting may make a small space look larger by employing many light sources to reduce shadows and provide a uniform dispersion of light. Reflective surfaces and correctly placed mirrors may also help bounce light about the space, increasing the sense of spaciousness.

What light fittings make a room look bigger? 

Mid-century light fixtures with streamlined designs, antique flush-mount ceiling lights for unobtrusive illumination, and vintage sconces for accentuating vertical space and providing depth are all examples of light fittings that make a room appear larger. Choosing fixtures with reflecting coatings can help increase light and create an open, breezy feeling. 


Choosing and installing wall sconces may improve your room's usefulness and beauty. Understanding your sconces' function, style, size, and location allows you to create a well-lit, pleasant environment in any space.

Whether you're installing vintage wall sconces for a touch of elegance or modern sconces for a sleek design, these pointers will help you make the right decision and complete a professional installation.

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