Kitchen Lighting Tips

Kitchen Lighting

The kitchen has always been dubbed the heart of the home.

Whether it’s the end of a busy day during the work week and you’re throwing a pizza in the oven, or your family and friends are visiting for a holiday feast, this is the part of the house where everyone gathers.

To start, use general lighting, such as recessed cans, LED discs or wafer lights that supply work light for meal prep and cooking. Ensure proper placement so you achieve overall illumination with no dark spots.

Add undercabinet lighting or task lighting to direct light on counter areas for detailed work, or when the general room lighting is not needed during the day. Ask your electrician to install them as self-contained 120V fixtures or as part of a low voltage tape or strip system. Put undercabinet lights on a dimmer and use them as a night light (which is especially handy for those late night snackers!) They add a soft glow of light to the kitchen perimeter when dimmed for an intimate dinner setting or cocktail party.

Likewise, install strip or tape lighting on the top of kitchen cabinets (if they don’t touch the ceiling) for up-lighting or underneath the edge of the base cabinet for toe kick lighting. Give your kitchen a whole new look for entertaining or dining by putting both applications on a dimmer.

Many homes are now bumping up the size of islands and doing away with breakfast nooks or dining areas. Seating is added and /or multi-height islands are created to add eating spaces and cooking, washing or meal prep areas. Add warmth and a hominess to your kitchen with multiple pendants over the length of the island. Choose from the many finishes available to complement your appliances, cabinet pulls or faucet. Be sure the bottom of the fixture doesn’t hang lower than the tallest person in your household so there is no head bumping. But you’ll probably want at least 30″ to 36″ clearance between your work surface and the bottom of your fixtures. For smaller islands (4 to 5 feet long), consider one large fixture or two medium pendants, while larger islands can handle two larger or three medium sized pendants. If you find a fixture you love, our lighting showroom professionals can help determine how many you need for your island or if the size will work with your kitchen design.

Again, remember, dimmers or SMART HOME technology will allow you to create multiple lighting scenes so that your kitchen can be used for any situation and have the right amount of light for each.