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How to Create the Perfect Lighting Plan for Your Kitchen

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If you spend a lot of time preparing meals, or simply eating meals in the kitchen, you know how important it is to be able to see what you’re doing. The right lighting brings out the best in your kitchen cabinets, countertops, food, and you. Thankfully, today’s builders take lighting design into consideration when constructing new homes. But years ago, home builders frequently just slapped a fluorescent fixture on the ceiling and called it a day. If you live in an older Orlando area home that could use a kitchen lighting makeover, here are some ideas to consider.

The following are four key areas of lighting to use for your kitchen. When these lights are blended together, they create a warm and inviting environment, practical workspace and lively entertainment area.

Four Types of Lighting for Your Orlando Home

 task lighting

task lighting

Task Lighting - Anywhere you plan to work in your kitchen is a place that requires task lighting. Prime areas for bright, focused lighting include countertops, island, and pantry. Strip lights, which are long linear bulbs or a string of lights in a single fixture, are an excellent option for under-cabinet lighting. Hockey-puck shaped halogen lights also work well for task lighting.

Ambient Lighting – This type of lighting is often overlooked in the kitchen. But adding this type of indirect lighting helps to soften the lines and shadows on people’s faces, and creates a warm inviting glow in your kitchen. Some types of ambient lighting fixtures are flush-mounted ceiling fixtures, a pendant hanging over the island and adjustable track lighting.

Accent Lighting – Since kitchens are being used more often for casual entertaining, it’s becoming more common to include accent lighting in this space. Accent lighting can be used to highlight a piece of artwork on the wall behind a breakfast table, or a tile backsplash over the sink. Another use for accent lights is to install them inside glass cabinets to illuminate china and glassware collections. Accent lights come in several varieties, including track lighting, uplighters, directional eyeball lights and wall sconces.

 decorative lighting

decorative lighting

Decorative Lighting – There are two major considerations for the use of decorative lighting. It’s important to ensure that the scale of the fixtures fits the space, and that the shade material has enough opacity to hide the light bulb. Decorative lighting includes fixtures like chandeliers and hanging pendants. The larger the space, the greater importance decorative lighting plays.

Layering Lights for Effect

The key to layering all of these lighting types together in your kitchen is to have a variety of light levels available at your fingertips. That’s where dimmers and switches come into play. These devices help you create the perfect ambiance for your kitchen, depending on the mood you want to create.

There are a variety of light bulbs to use in your home, that it can be confusing to know which ones are energy efficient and cost effective. OUC, Orlando's municipal utility company, offers a primer on lighting technologies that are available today.

Want more tips for lighting the rest of your home? Read this post:

Read:Interior Design and Lighting