Kitchen lighting can make or break a well designed kitchen – if the kitchen is well lit, you probably will not even think about the lighting more than once or twice after the work is done. But, if the light placement is bad or poorly done, you will think about the kitchen lighting every time you have to work in the kitchen after the sunlight is gone. No, I’m not being a pessimist, I have worked in friends’ kitchens that have really bad placement of very expensive lighting and it is awful.
Planning, planning, planning is the only way that your kitchen will tie all together, with everything working together. Make sure that your lighting comes from multiple sources and multiple levels. It is too frustrating to try to work in shadows from the light source that comes from behind you instead of overhead. If you have wall cabinets, consider having under cabinet lighting installed. If you cannot run wiring for the lights under the counter, there are lights that you can mount that are battery powered. You really do not want to have a dark kitchen; lighting is much too important to just have it happen rather than planning for where you want and need light.
Remember, your kitchen, although it may be beautiful, is not a painting. Your lighting needs to be functional, not pin pointing a portrait. We have used recessed lighting fixtures, track lighting, and sometimes even some really strange kitchen lights. The amount of light needed on a particular area was considered before the light fixtures were chosen. Do pay attention to the style of the light fixtures and make sure that they go with your chosen style – country, traditional, French provincial, modern or American country. Do not choose a kitchen light fixture just because you like it – unless you are going to design the room around the light. (I have seen that done with a 16th century French chandelier in a dining room, but not in a kitchen.)
Remember, kitchen lighting truly can make or break your enjoyment of working in your new remodeled kitchen. Take your time and turn on your lights.