They say the kitchen is the heart of your home. And it’s not without good reason. Your home’s kitchen is a dynamic, multi-functional space that’s used by your entire family.
Not only do you do nearly all your cooking and prep work there, it’s also used by your children to eat snacks while they do their homework. It can be a space for fun family activities that provides a great opportunity to bond over experimental recipes and fun cooking or baking projects.
When it comes to creating a welcoming, relaxing atmosphere in your kitchen, there’s perhaps nothing more important than lighting.
That’s where M&M Lighting comes in. At our lighting design center, we carry a full-range of products for every style of decor and all your illumination needs.
On top of that, you’ll find expert advice and assistance through every step of the process. This helps you to minimize the guesswork and create the kitchen you’ve always dreamed of.
Developing A Full-Orbed Kitchen Lighting Strategy
When it comes to kitchen lighting, you’ll want to plan your lighting strategy in this order, task lighting, accent lighting, and finally, ambient lighting.
While many rooms benefit from starting with your ambient lighting strategy, kitchens are a little different. The reason you start with task lighting in the case of your kitchen lighting design strategy is because you want to ensure you have sufficient lighting for all your kitchen tasks.
From there, you can move to accent lighting to beautify the room and heighten its visual appeal. After that, you can fill out the rest of your lighting with the perfect amount of ambient lighting.
You can also throw in lighting accessories like dimmers to further customize your lighting and really wow your visitors.
Task lighting is exactly as it sounds: lighting that provides targeted illumination for completing certain tasks.
One of the best tips to develop or update your task lighting strategy is to imagine yourself in your kitchen going about your usual tasks. Think about the areas that could benefit from extra, focused lighting. This could be your cabinets, countertops, sink, or over your kitchen island counters.
Kitchen Countertop Lighting
Since many surfaces in your kitchen come underneath cabinets, countertop lighting is often best achieved through undercabinet lighting. Countertop lighting can help you accomplish precision tasks with greater levels of ease.
Helpful note: If you have a shiny countertop, consider using a diffused lighting source in order to cut down on the amount of glare.
Kitchen Sink Lighting
Having proper lighting over your sink can help you ensure dishes and produce are thoroughly washed and clean.
Sink lighting can be accomplished through recessed lighting placed directly overhead or a track head with a focused beam.
Kitchen Cabinet Lighting
Cabinet lighting can provide great additional lighting to cabinets that may not receive the full force of your accent or ambient lighting.
The best place to install cabinet lighting is underneath each of the shelves. This avoids shadows and provides the maximum amount of illumination.
Kitchen Drawer Lighting
Having a soft light in your kitchen drawers will help your beautiful silverware sparkle. Install drawer lighting with a motion sensor to have them turn on and off automatically as you open and close your drawers.
Kitchen Island Counter Lighting
If you plan to do prep work at your kitchen island, then you’ll want focused lighting, rather than decorative pieces like pendants that simply disperse light in all directions.
Use track lighting over your island counter for flexibility both in terms of light location and types of lights you can use. This gives you great control to ensure you get the task lighting you need.
After you’ve got your task lighting taken care of, it’s time to move to your accent lighting. Accent lighting can help draw attention to displays, interior design details, and artwork in your kitchen.
Accent lighting should be about five times brighter than the ambient lighting in the room if you really want to highlight certain features.
Toe Kick Lights
These lights are designed to draw attention to your flooring’s texture and design. They are best placed around the perimeter of your space or underneath your island.
They’re also a great way to ensure you have lighting for your midnight snack cravings, without having to turn on the main lights in your kitchen.
Puck lights are used for glass-front cabinets. Use them to draw attention to china or other dishes or kitchenware you want to put on display.
These lights are placed between the top of your cabinets and the ceiling. Use them to highlight particular design and decor features.
After you have the critical elements of task and accent lighting figured out, your ambient lighting source should fall into place with ease. Recessed lighting or chandeliers can give your kitchen the ambient lighting it needs.
You can add another degree of customization to your lighting strategy by incorporating dimmer switches. This gives you even more control over the lighting in the room and can help you ensure optimal levels of lighting. After all, overlighting can be just as much of a problem as underlighting.
Another helpful thing to remember is the role that natural lighting plays in your lighting strategy. When you are considering your ambient lighting strategy, think about how sunlight will affect your lighting needs during the day and what the lack thereof will do during the night.