Chandeliers often are used to illuminate the space above a counter or table. They also can add a touch of character to your kitchen, with elegant crystals and intricate iron or brass fixtures easily elevating a space’s look and feel. Mini-chandeliers are the perfect eye-candy for nooks and breakfast bars, while pendants can be easily grouped together. Island lighting also can provide great task and accent lighting, with the proper dimming system, of course. Other kitchen ceiling lights, such as flush-mounts and recessed fixtures, provide ample light for completing tasks.
Bright, focused task lighting is perfect for preparing and cooking meals. The ideal task lighting can be achieved using recessed ceiling lights and pendants. In addition, lighting underneath the cabinets—offered in LED bars, halogen and xenon lamps, and fluorescents—helps to eliminate shadows when preparing food and also highlights the kitchen backsplash. Island lights also can be used to cast a welcoming aura for relaxing and entertaining, while fixtures above the cabinets cast a warm, glowing upward light.
Kitchen Light Fixtures: A Q&A with Mandy
- Are dimmers important for proper kitchen lighting?
Yes. Dimmers save you money by using less energy. If you dim an incandescent light bulb just 25 percent, you can extend that bulb’s life by four times. Dimmers also help change the mood and allow for both task and ambient lighting.
- My kitchen and dining area adjoin, how can I create the illusion of separation?
Hang two or three mini-pendants above a counter to create the illusion of two zones. Make sure to allow at least 30 inches to 40 inches between the countertop and bottom of the pendant fixture. When deciding on how much space to allow between the fixtures, consider the surface you are trying to illuminate. Find the center point of the counter and measure the space for two, three, or four pendants.
- Can I use the same bulb shape, size, and wattage for each recessed light fixture in my kitchen?
Yes. Since the reflector in the recessed fixture determines the shape of light and the lighting control determines the brightness, fluorescent light sources and pin-based lamps work especially well.
- What's the best way to properly light a kitchen sink area?
To avoid shadows, it is best to install two recessed lighting fixtures—one above your head and one directly above the center of the sink. Be sure to position the fixtures 15 inches to 18 inches apart above a 30-inch to 36-inch sink. Track and rail fixtures also can help achieve the same effect.
- Will fluorescent lighting make my kitchen look unattractive?
No, but consider these facts first. Choose a warm, white bulb that is 2700-3500 Kelvin lamps, and make sure the light bounces off of a white or light ceiling color as not to emphasize surface irregularities.