As I work with clients and contractors, I am frequently amazed and disappointed that the ONE THING that can make a break a kitchen is not even considered in the design.
What is it?
Kitchens have more demands placed on them than any other room in the house. Think about it – Food prep requires using sharp instruments and often making precise measurements. This requires great task lighting, and nothing does that better than under-cabinet lighting. There are many products out there, but my favorite is LED or Xenon dimmable strips.
A great kitchen has layers of light that can be adjusted to suit the mood and the task. You need ambient light, usually provided by recessed cans and pendants, task lighting provided by under-cabinet lights, and to really makes things dazzling feature spots and mood lighting.
Once the party starts, you want to dim the lights from the heavy-duty task-oriented lighting to a cozier low light that encourages to people to linger and talk. One of my favorite kitchen tricks is to have light underneath the cabinets and on top of the cabinets if the ceiling is high enough. That way, when the party starts, I can have just enough light to give a warm glow to the room, make it easy for people to help themselves to food placed on the island, but keep the perimeter of the room soft and glowing.
So when planning your new kitchen or renovation – give some serious thought to lighting. This is a significant investment, and you want it to look it’s best.