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Category:  Home Improvement

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22 Key Measurements for Decorating and Remodeling Your House

By Julie Lohmeier

Inevitably as you are planning a home or room remodeling project, you ask yourself if you have enough room, what size should this be, how should that be, how big should the chandelier be. Be puzzle no more. Keep this list as a handy reference for 22 key measurements when decorating or remodeling your house:

1) Dining Room Chandelier Installation Height:  30" above the table for a 8' tall ceiling, 34" above the table if the ceiling is higher than 8'.

2) Dining Room Chandelier Width: 12" less than the narrowest side (width typically) of a rectangle or oval table, 18" less than the diameter of a square or round table.

3) Dining Room Chandelier Fixture Height: 3" per foot of ceiling  height or 24" for a 8' ceiling.

4) Foyer Chandelier Fixture Height: 3" per foot of ceiling height  with 30" maximum

5) Foyer Chandelier Installation Height:  About 1/3 down from  ceiling to base of fixture so that light disperses evenly in    foyer. So for a 20' foyer, the base of the chandelier should be 6-7' below the ceiling.

6) Foyer Chandelier Width: 1" per foot of ceiling width  measured diagonally. A 12'x12' foyer would require an 18" wide chandelier.

7) Wall Pictures or Hangings:  At "eye level".  That's a pretty    wide range but typically around 65" off the floor. Check the    look by pinning a properly sized piece of paper on the wall  with straight pins. Once correct, mark for the hanging hardware. Using 2 hooks is recommended to hang and keep a  picture straight - assuming of course that your hooks are level!

8) Valance Height:  No less than 1/4 and no more than 1/3 of    your window height.That's why most pre-made valances are 15-18" because the majority of standard windows are anywhere    from 45-72" tall.  Personally, I prefer them closer to the 1/3 mark for a fuller, richer feel.

9) Kitchen cabinet height:  34-1/2" tall off the floor.

10) Kitchen cabinet wall installation height: 18" off the counter top or 54" above the floor.

11) Kitchen base (floor) cabinet width: 24"

12) Kitchen wall cabinet width: 12"

13) Kitchen countertop space by sink: 18-30" on one side and  48-54" on the other.

14) Kitchen countertop space by range: 12" minimum on one side and 15-24" on the other.

15) Microwave and built in oven countertop space: 15-18" on the right side assuming a left hinged door.

16) Dishwasher front space: 20" from the open dishwasher door to any obstruction or traffic.

17) Table:  36" between table and any traffic area or obstruction  in order to have plenty of space to move chairs in and out.

18) Island and Breakfast Bar height: Standard cabinet height (34-1/2") for standard work area, 30" for table style  seating, 42" for stool height.

19) Countertop height: 1 to 1-1/2" standard.

20) Bathroom cabinet depth: 18-20"

21) Bathroom cabinet height: Standard is 29" so with the  countertop it's like a table, but this is quite short for     adults to use a sink.  Some manufacturers are now making  bathroom vanities at 32-33" tall.  I used a compromise     for our kids at about 31" plus the countertop.

22) Master bathroom cabinet height:  While standard height is still 29", I'd recommend using something taller like a  kitchen cabinet height of 34-35".  However, you will not     be able to use a standard bathroom countertop if you use  a kitchen cabinet base as the widths are different (24" for     a kitchen, 18" for a bath). You'll either need to get a     custom countertop or a custom cabinet.

These measurements are important to know when designing and laying out a project or when hanging new light fixtures. Be sure to design enough space and to pick the correctly sized accessories to fit and provide balance to your room.  It's too late once the kitchen is built and the island is in to realize that you can't open your dishwasher all the way. Measure first and use this as a handy guide! Good luck.

Julie Lohmeier is the veteran of numerous home remodeling and building projects.  From working hands on and doing much of the work herself to hiring contractors and construction managers, she has seen the entire spectrum of home improvement.  She shares her remodeling tips, home decorating ideas, and other various rants at  Sign up for her free email newsletter at:  


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