Kitchen Lighting

Thinking of using that really sharp knife in the dark? Not as a weapon-although it could become that in terms of self-inflicted wounds as a result of poor lighting in the kitchen. When it comes to a good lighting plan, the kitchen is probably one of the most important places to focus on. Of course, every room in the house needs good lighting, but when it comes to the kitchen, with the variety of functions that occur in that room, lighting should be both balanced and strategic.

Plan To Layer The Lighting

A good kitchen lighting plan would include layering lighting in order to create the right mix for your space. It will blend into the architecture as well as the décor, employing different types of lighting for different functions. The days of using a central lighting source in the middle of the ceiling in order to handle the needs is fast becoming a thing of the past as more and more recognition is given to form and function in living spaces.

So then, what is layered lighting and how can it be used effectively in a kitchen lighting plan? There are four basic types of light used in home design and each has a specific purpose. We will cover each of them below.

Task Lighting-So You Don't Cut Yourself

Task lighting is of prime importance when it comes to food preparation, which happens to be the main focus of the kitchen. Since it is supposed to provide adequate light for chopping, or reading recipes, this light should be ideally between a person's head and the work surface, unless the primary work surface is an island. If the surface is a counter, then the lighting can best be done from under the cabinets, thus illuminating the counter space. If there is an island, then low hanging pendant task lighting installed above the island is appropriate.

Ambient Lighting-To Welcome People Into The Space

Ambient lighting fills the room with a soft, warm glow which lessens shadows and makes the room a pleasure to enter. Placed above the cabinets, if there's room up there, it softly lights the room by bouncing off the ceiling and spreading across the upper areas of the room without being directly focused upon anything in particular. Although the most ignored type of lighting in a kitchen, ambient lighting, when properly installed makes the room a welcome place.

Accent & Decorative Lighting-Just Showing Off

When you want to show off special china or crystal, or just add dimension to the kitchen, accent lighting is the way to do it. Strategically placing accent lights in cabinets or focused upon special wall hangings or collectibles, accent lights draw the eye to the prize. Decorative lighting can be used in the form of a floor lamp with a theme shade or a chandelier with a dimmer switch hung over the kitchen table for a romantic touch.

When it comes to lighting the kitchen, layering the methods will give you optimum light coverage with the advantage of controlling the mood.