These days most kitchens are used as dining room, office and a family room. The lights are on in the kitchen much more than in any other room in your home. Since you’re going to be using the kitchen for cooking, working and playing, you will need a good range of lighting to create a suitable environment for all your activities as well as preventing any accidents and eyestrain. Here at The Wright Kitchen, we like to think that we can all agree that the more lighting options you have in a kitchen the better (without going overboard of course, you don’t want to blind your guests!). So read on as we have some great ideas for you to light up your kitchen in more ways than one.
A single overhead fixture will give you good lighting for most of your general cleaning activities and navigation but does a terrible job of casting light inside your cabinets; especially in the deep cabinets and your corner units. One possible solution is to use the current light fixture electrical box to add in a new track lighting system.
Track lighting is available in fluorescent, incandescent, and high- and low-voltage halogen styles. There are multiple fixtures that give you the freedom to focus and direct the light where you need it most. There are also a very wide variety of specialized fixtures which allow you to customize and arrange your lighting as you need it. You can buy units with reflector bulbs for task lighting and you can buy units created especially for general or mood light. Many of the systems also have adapters for pendant lighting.
Once you’ve selected your fixtures, be careful to position them so that they don’t shine directly into your eyes. Remember not to install fixtures directly in line with sinks and other such work areas because your head will block the light. Instead, install them to the sides and then angle them out toward the target spot. Place the fixtures where they won’t get in the way of opening upper cabinet doors. Also be sure to select a system that will complement the look and feel of your own kitchen.
Under Cabinet Lighting
Another type of lighting which is useful in kitchens is under cabinet lighting. Since your body and upper cabinets can often block the light from any centrally located ceiling fixtures, installing cabinet lighting will put the light where you need it most. Avoid working in dim shadows by installing the lights beneath the upper cabinets. This will help to illuminate your cutting boards and cookbooks.
Another solution to kitchen lighting is to purchase special recessed light trims which focus light where you need it most.
The standard recessed lights often tend to light up floors, walls, cabinet fronts and frequently the top of your head. These are all places where light isn’t really needed. Many of the recessed light manufacturers have produce a basic fixture that can be fitted with a good variety of trims which range from the more basic baffled cylinder to wall washers and adjustable eyeballs. These last two versions allow you to direct light right where it’s needed; to the inside of your cabinets or to specific areas of your countertop. The advantage to using these trims is that the cost is usually quite low and the job takes only a few minutes to complete.
One last tip: You should make sure that your new trims are made by the same company that made the recessed housing and that the trim is compatible.
The Wright Kitchen will do its best to redesign your kitchen with appropriate lighting solutions. Contact The Wright Kitchen if you’re interested in our various options for kitchen redesign and renovation.