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Better Lighting Design Makes Your Kitchen a More Comfortable and Productive Living Space

Over the years, the kitchen has become more important as the center of most households. It plays host not only to family meals, but a place for kids to do their homework, housewives to plan their busy weeks, and a central entertaining area when hosting family and friends. Well planned lighting design is essential to make the kitchen a comfortable yet productive space. Understanding the concept of light layering will help you blend different light sources together to create a warm and inviting yet useful environment.

Ambient lighting illuminates the entire space as you come into the room. This layer is used for more casual activities. Ambient lighting can come in the form of recessed cans or a centrally placed fluorescent lighting fixture. Another way to create ambient lighting is by using uplights on top of the cabinets to reflect light off the ceiling.

Recessed lighting is an excellent source of ambient lighting for kitchen spaces.

Task lighting shines a shadow free light directly at a work surface. Task lighting can be used for low, mood lighting, but is most frequently used in the preparation of food. You can find task lighting mounted underneath cabinets to give you light at the precise point you need it without casting any shadows from over head lights. LED under cabinet lights are becoming more popular than their predecessors for the fact that they use less energy and are cooler than the standard xenon or fluorescent type lighting.

Under cabinet lighting provides excellent task lighting, making your cabinet space more productive.

Accent lighting adds a third dimension to the space. Accent lighting is typically where you can be most creative with your design. It is the “jewelry” of lighting in the kitchen. Generally accent lighting is found over islands or peninsulas with no overhead cabinets. You can also choose to highlight an architectural feature or a special piece of artwork with accent lighting. Accent lighting allows you to create a dramatic impact in the room.

Pendant lighting over an island or bar is a form of accent lighting.

Dimming, or lighting control, allows you to blend the layers of lighting to create a warm, inviting space, and is a very important aspect of kitchen lighting design. Ensuring that you are able to control the three layers of light—ambient, task, and accent—will help you create the ideal atmosphere in your kitchen by allowing you to blend each layer to fit the needs of the activity at that moment. Additionally, lighting control switches and cover plates can be selected to match your tile or paint colors.

To create a warm and inviting space, lighting should be an extension of your overall design concept. Incorporating these light layering tips along with dimming will help you achieve that goal and ultimately lead to a more pleasant and more productive living environment in the busiest room in your home.

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Traditional & Contemporary Lighting & Ceiling Fans | Custom Lighting Designs | Energy Efficient Solutions | Landscape Lighting
Architectural Downlighting | Cabinet Lighting | Turn-key Installation Services | Table & Floor Lamps | Home Décor | Light Bulbs