How to Choose Kitchen Lighting

Remodeling your kitchen is a popular home improvement among homeowners. This is your opportunity to transform the look and feel of your kitchen to suit your needs. Whether you're re-tiling the backsplash, or replacing the countertops, one aspect every kitchen renovator needs to consider is your kitchen lighting.




The Right Kitchen Lighting for Your Space

Have you ever cooked in an insufficiently lit kitchen? Then you definitely know what we're talking about. If even one corner of your kitchen is under-lit, it becomes practically unusable. When you can't see what you're chopping and can't see clearly enough to know when the counter is clean, you might as well put a fruit bowl there and accept the counter space as lost. But, of course, no homeowner ever has to put up with an underlit kitchen for long.

Not sure where to start? That's alright, as the lighting experts in this conversation, we're happy to help by explaining the ins and outs of kitchen lighting. With a beautiful new lighting solution, you may not even recognize your kitchen anymore. In the good way.

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The Complete Kitchen Lighting Standard:

The kitchen lighting standard is a four-piece combination of light fixtures that together make the complete kitchen experience. There are four essential fixtures every kitchen must have in order to accommodate not just meal-time prep and clean up, but all the other ways the kitchen fits into your everyday lives as well.

1) The Nightlight - Above the Sink

Great lighting above the sink allows you to spot every fleck while doing the dishes. The sink light can be a soft effusive white light, a concentrated spotlight or a simple wall lamp but it needs to be able to shed light directly on the sink and the immediate surrounding counter space.

Of course, that's not all the sink light is good for. If you grew up in a home where there was always a soft kitchen light on, then it's likely that this was either the sink or oven hood light. Leaving the sink light on at night is a great way to make sure that late-night explorers don't stub their toe on the island and can find their way safely to a glass of water.


2) The Midnight Snack - In the Oven Hood

Water isn't the only thing that people shuffle into the kitchen for well after bedtime. Whether you were woken by hunger, a bad dream, or a sudden craving for bacon, the light below or inside the oven hood is there for you. This specialized wall lamp glows down onto the stove and surrounding area allowing even late-night meals to be cooked safely in clear illumination without having to turn on the rest of the lights or risk waking someone else up who might want in on the midnight snack.

3) The Work of Art - Above the Island or Table

When most people think of kitchen lighting they are imaging are elegant hanging light fixtures that so often dominate the central air-space in a kitchen. What most people don't realize is that these fixtures are far more often there as works of art rather than practical solutions. You could go with anything from an elaborate shade on a long bar lamp to a complex sculpture of tiny pendant lights. This is your chance to choose something you feel will make the kitchen beautiful as a work of art and illumination as an afterthought.


4) The Spot(less) Solution - Recessed Canisters

And why can illumination be an afterthought when choosing your 'big' light fixture? The reason for this is because we all know that kitchens have one final absolutely necessary style of light: Recessed ceiling lights. In the kitchen, the ability to see the food you're cooking and the messes you clean up is vital, non-negotiable, and should be facilitated with corner-to-corner clear white light. The most popular modern solution is small but surprisingly bright; recessed canister lights spaced evenly over the ceiling-surface of the kitchen. These provide the ability to see precisely down to counting the crumbs on the counter to ensure that your food is always perfectly cooked and the counters are spotless.

Optional Kitchen Lighting Perks:

Optional kitchen lighting solutions are all useful but not necessary as long as you have covered your bases. Clever homeowners all over the world have been innovating fun and helpful ways to light the kitchen so if you're not done, we're happy to take you on a quick tour of additional light ideas.

1) Under the Cabinets

Have you ever noticed that even in a very well-lit kitchen, there's almost always some shadow underneath the high cabinets? This shadow is easy to understand and, surprisingly, also entirely easy to solve. If you want perfect visual clarity of your counters under cabinets, simply install a few bar lights on the underside of the cabinets for an attractive indirect light effect.

2) Footlights

Just like in a movie theater, footlights are another fun way to use the undersides of your kitchen for dramatic and useful effect. Footlights can be placed in bars underneath the lower lip of your counter cabinets and serve as an additional nightlight solution. Not to mention they look incredibly cool when the rest of the lights are turned off.

3) Indirect Mood Lighting

Recessed ceiling, or cabinets that stop before they hit the ceiling, are perfect opportunities to add style with your lighting. Subtly lighting areas where the light source cannot be seen is known as indirect lighting and it has a beautiful enhancing effect on any room, especially your kitchen.

Knowing how to light your kitchen is a key element to almost any kitchen remodeling plan. When you're planning your kitchen renovation, take a moment to think about where you want lights. Need some inspiration? Visit our showroom


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