Kitchen Island Lighting – Selecting the Right Options

What types of Lighting do you use for kitchen island lighting? The kitchen is one of the busiest rooms in your home. It’s also a room that can be very difficult to create a beautiful lighting setup. However, by considering the tasks you often perform in your kitchen and designing your lighting appropriately, you can create a beautiful space that provides the proper lighting you need while also enhancing the look and feel of the room. How can you best determine the right lighting setup for your kitchen island? There are many different types of lighting available for kitchen islands.

Kitchen Island Lighting – Selecting the Right Options


Task lighting. The main function of kitchen island lighting fixtures is to offer task lighting over your kitchen work space. Keep in mind, task lighting is crucial to productivity and alertness, both of which are just as crucial in the kitchen as they are in the office. With proper lighting, you can make quick food preparation decisions, read recipes, and compare ingredients. With the right balance of task and ambient lighting, you can even work from the patio or deck in total darkness!


Ambient lighting. While task lighting is critical to your kitchen island lighting, you also need to consider ambient lighting when it comes to the overall illumination of the room. You want to make sure that you’re getting the proper amount of natural light to ensure that your kitchen is well-lit and that you are comfortable working in it. The goal here is to make sure that you don’t end up using artificial lights during the day and using only natural lights at night.


Kitchen island pendants. A kitchen island lighting fixture is typically mounted on or near the kitchen counter or work surface. There are two common options for hanging a pendant light: the hard-wired option and the screw-on/plug-in option. Both types provide a stable source of illumination, although the hard-wired option is slightly more secure due to its anchoring system.


Task lighting. A majority of kitchen island lighting systems today include three primary sources of task illumination: one downlight for general use, one downlight for lighting a specific work area, and one uplight for reading or cooking purposes. Most systems come with a single downlight and a dedicated bulb for each. If you like, you can mix and match bulbs, using different ones for different tasks.


Table top lighting. Table top lights are generally not included in a kitchen island lighting package, and this can limit your options quite significantly. If you must have them, make sure that the model you get has sufficient lumens for what you will be using it for. For instance, if you plan to put an entertainment center on the island, make sure that it has enough lumens to light the entire area easily. In addition, make sure that the table top lights you get have steady connections so that the brightness does not vary when the lights are dimmed or switched off.


Chandeliers and pendants. Although they do not fall under the category of kitchen island lighting, these two fixtures are often used as accents or as standalone fixtures. If you choose to get your island lighting from the manufacturer, look out for models that come equipped with pendants or chandeliers. These fixtures are great for bringing additional shine and accent to your island areas and can help in making your kitchen more appealing to your visitors.


Low ceilings and recessed lighting. As mentioned above, most island units are meant to provide enough light to the kitchen island areas, but many people overlook the need to bring in some lighting from below. Recessed lights and low ceilings are a great way to add depth to an island unit without over-doing it. If you already have recessed lights installed, then you can just opt to use them on top of your recessed lights. Alternatively, you may want to look at low ceiling lights as these are great for providing enough light without it draws too much attention to the rest of your space. Recessed lighting is also perfect for adding ambiance to dark corners of your kitchen like the areas below the island counter.

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