Lighting plays a very important role in a modern kitchen, illuminating workspaces for greater safety and efficiency, creating ambience and setting the right mood, and increasing the aesthetic appeal of this communal area. Yet, many homeowners overlook this very versatile tool when considering the design of the kitchen space.
Lighting applications fall into three main categories, ambient lighting, task lighting and accent lighting.
Ambient lighting is your overall lighting source, usually from a light fixture in the ceiling. A chandelier and pendant lights fall within this category.
Task lighting, as the name suggests, enables you to see more clearly to prepare meals, read recipes and do other tasks in the kitchen. Strip lights and puck lights are often used in this application.
Accent lighting often referred to as decorative lighting, is used to highlight objects or specific areas in the kitchen.
Lights are now considered the latest accessories for cabinets and, when used correctly, further elevate the décor and functional quality of the kitchen. Here are a few ways to incorporate lighting within your kitchen cabinets.
Install accent lights in the interior of your glass-front cabinets to highlight your dinnerware and glassware collection. Consider soft lighting options to showcase your family’s china and other valuables.
You may apply lighting to the insides of base cabinets as well. This application may be used with door sensors to turn the lights on and off when the cabinet is opened or closed.
Lighting above cabinets
Increase your kitchen’s visual appeal and add more brightness with above-cabinet lighting. Illuminate the open space between overhead cabinets and the ceiling with LED strip lights placed on top of cabinets. This kind of lighting can make the space between cabinets and ceiling appear larger, create a warm glow and provide another indirect light source in your kitchen.
Above-cabinet lighting has continued to gain popularity with homeowners and is increasingly a standard fixture in the construction of new homes.
Open shelves: Another interesting use of lighting in the kitchen, is the use of accent lighting in the open shelves of your cabinets. Use LED strip lights to add style and aesthetic appeal to your kitchen.
You can use LED strip lights within the skirting of lower cabinets to illuminate a walkway. This is ideal for those secret midnight trips to the refrigerator for a late-night snack. This use of lighting is also visually striking as it creates a floating effect.
Some of your most hazardous kitchen tools are kept in drawers. Use in-drawer lighting to brighten the insides of your drawers to make it easy to find items even in small spaces and avoid minor accidents without needing to turn on bright overhead lights during the night.
Increase efficiency and visibility in your kitchen with under-cabinet lighting. Ceiling lights do little to illuminate your countertops, casting shadows and blind spots as light bounces off overhead cabinets. Your countertops need to be properly lit so you may efficiently and safely create your culinary masterpieces and read recipes, among other tasks. Install lights on the underside of top-mounted cabinets to brighten the dark areas. Under-cabinet lighting is also great for highlighting your backsplash.
You can choose from a wide variety of electrical lighting options, whether hardwired, battery-operated or plugs. The most commonly used within these categories are strip, puck, LED strip or fluorescent tube lighting.
Opt for LED lighting options for your lighting projects, as they consume less power and tend to have a longer lifespan than traditional lighting solutions, thus saving homeowners money. LEDs also have amazing design flexibility, allowing for personality expressions.
Lighting options are wide and varied and can confuse the average homeowner who is planning a kitchen renovation. Check with your cabinet designer to ensure the applicability and compatibility of lighting selections and cabinetry.
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