Instead of or in addition to sconces hidden lights can add a general glow that bounces off the wall and into the room in an even subtler and more diffuse way. Cove lights are built into niches that hide the light source (often a plain LED strip) but hidden lights can also be obscured by medicine cabinets shelving or storage units.
Don’t limit lighting to downlights. Depending on the location consider wall sconces or uplighting to create a softer ambiance and avoid potentially harsh downlighting that can cast ominous shadows.
When hanging a light over a table or a kitchen island 28 to 34 inches is the recommended distance from the bottom of the light to the surface of the table or island. However the size of the light makes a difference. In general a smaller light can be moved lower and a larger light can be moved higher.