The kitchen is one of the most frequently used areas of a home. It’s a place where families often come together and acts as a central hub of activity for the house. Since there is so much emphasis placed on this one area, its makes finding the right kitchen lighting all that much more important. Below are a few suggestions you should keep in mind on implementing the best kitchen lighting so this space will reach its full potential.
To have effective kitchen lighting requires blending several different types of lighting together to create a well-lit, inviting atmosphere. Even though you can use just one type of lighting fixture, you will get a much better result by combining several options together throughout the lighting plan. Implementing several types of lighting helps create a more layered look, which will also help eliminate the glare that is commonly associated with having just one main fixture that is overly bright.
When most homeowners think of general lighting, they envision one large fixture overhead that is intended to light the entire space. Even though general lighting has evolved into a more modern approach, having a main fixture that operates as the primary light source isn’t totally out of style, however the overall brightness has changed. There is no longer a need to overcompensate with one fixture when you incorporate different layers of lighting into the space. For example, when the four previously mentioned layers are in place, general lighting should be used to fill in the gaps and not as the starting point.
Task lighting is ideal for providing focused illumination in areas where chopping, peeling, and other cooking-based tasks are commonly performed. An ideal option for this is track lighting or directional lighting that offers a focused beam of light spread.
Ambient lighting is all about creating ambiance, not to create bright light for visibility. This type of lighting helps provide inviting warmth to this living space by adding gentle tones of light. It also helps add a softening effect to help balance out the brighter lights, which can create harsh lines and shadows. A great way to create ambient lighting is by using smaller fixtures that are carefully placed, or by using bulbs with lower lumen outputs. Color temperature is also an important factor for designing ambient lighting, so we recommend opting for warmer temperatures over cooler ones.
Accent lighting is a great way to help draw attention to a specific area. For instance, a wall mount fixture that delivers gentle downward light over a wall with decorative accents is a great example of accent lighting. This type of lighting is typically done with directional lights that allow you to adjust the placement of light spread to where you need it. Other options for this type of light include recessed can lights, track lights, and wall sconces.
Decorative lighting is more about choosing a light fixture that coordinates with your kitchen’s décor rather than lighting function. A great example of this would be adding a chandelier light over the center island. While it would help provide illumination, the decorative features would far outweigh the lighting ability.
Even though kitchen lighting is typically straightforward, there are a few key areas that you should pay close attention to when designing kitchen lighting.
Adding under cabinet light is an easy way to create ambiance in a kitchen. Whether you choose strip lights, directional lights, or disk lights, it is important to keep in mind these lights are about ambiance. However, they can still also serve as dual purpose task lighting, depending on which solution is chosen. For instance, a dimmable LED fixture that offers a high lumen output can provide additional task lighting when at its most powerful setting, but it can also offer ambient lighting when dimmed to a lower lumen output.
Communal areas in a kitchen is where people congregate and linger. For years, kitchens were solely used for cooking. Now kitchens feature a modern concept with a breakfast nook area or seated bar area to create a sense of warmth that invites people to connect with one another. So, we recommend the lighting in this area should be more on the ambient side rather than the general lighting or task side of things. An ideal choice for this area would be hanging ceiling mounted lights, which offer a lower light spread.