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Looking for ways to remodel your kitchen? Installing a kitchen island can be a good starting point. It can be used for a wide range of activities such as food prep, kitchen dining, an armrest, a breakfast bar, a homework station and also a cocktail bar. However, a kitchen island without proper lighting isn’t worth having. 

Is your kitchen suffering from a lack of a special spotlight? Then it’s high time to go for a proper kitchen renovation. Here’s everything that you need to know about kitchen island lighting.  

How kitchen lighting evolved

Kitchen lighting1409 Trillium West Pkwy Kitchen with Island, by John Coley on flickr [CC BY 2.0]

There used to be a time when a 100-watt bulb hung from the kitchen’s ceiling was considered sufficient. A kitchen is a place that requires proper lighting to avoid accidents. However, this requirement has been ignored by most households for a very long period of time.  

Thankfully, kitchen lighting fixtures have evolved a lot over the last few years. People have become more conscious of the hazards that come with incorrect kitchen lighting. The type and design of the lights have changed a lot in modern times. 

The choice of your kitchen island lighting fixtures depends a lot on the complexity and size of the unit. A central ceiling light may be enough for small kitchens. However, bigger kitchens will require a blend of task, general and accent lighting. 

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Types of kitchen island lighting

Types of kitchen island lightingImage by Solomon Rodgers from Pixabay CC0

Your kitchen lighting needs to be correct for various situations such as dining and cooking. The lighting you choose should depend on how you are planning to use your kitchen island. A normal rule of thumb for sufficient lighting is to ensure 30 lumens per square foot. You also need to ensure that the lighting is in line with the island’s aesthetics and goes with the decoration. Here’s our handpicked list of lighting options for you to choose from. 

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1. Recessed lights

Recessed lights seem to disappear into the ceiling and give a unique sense of space and openness. This is a common choice for many as they require less cleaning. 

2. Surface lights

Surface lights can be a beautiful option to brighten up your kitchen. This type ranges from mushroom fixtures that can hold a single bulb to 2′ x 4′ fixtures that can hold multiple tubes. 

3. Overhead pendants

Pendant lights are a more specialized form of surface lights. With their wide range of styles and designs, island pendant lighting accounts for modern style and functionality. 

One of the biggest advantages of pendant lighting is that they focus on areas that require clear visibility. Pendants are also used for task lighting. If you own a big kitchen island, you may want to install multiple pendant lights. 

Be it a chandeliers pendant or a single bright pendant light or several ones that deliver roughly the same brightness, the idea is to have enough light for your kitchen. 

Why lighting should be at the top of your renovation hit list? Let’s find out!

Things to remember for the right kitchen island lighting

right kitchen island lightingPhoto by Pexels CC0

1. Understand your requirement

Kitchen islands offer excellent design opportunities in terms of lighting. You can choose from simple downlights for task lighting to pendants or decorative alternatives with diffused or ambient light. It is crucial that you clearly understand your needs. Once you know what you need, making the final choice will become easier.

2. Review the options 

You will find a huge variety of designs and lighting types available in the market. Try to review the options available correctly to be able to match the right one with your requirements. Consider the brightness, flow of light and area of coverage for each available alternative before shortlisting any. 

3. Remember the size of the island

The size of the kitchen island will ultimately determine the number and size of the lights required. So, it is important to get accurate measurements of the surface area that you are looking to cover. Measure the width and length of the island outline. You will need to include the space taken by the stools and chairs. Once you have the measurement, multiply both to get the total working area.

4. Measure the height 

If pendant light is what your heart desires, remember to hang them at the right height. The lights should be 30 inches above the island or 72 inches above the floor. 

5. Maintain the right distance between each pendant light 

The number of pendants lights depends a lot on the size of the kitchen island in question. The simple rule is to leave a gap of 18 inches between two fixtures. This helps to produce a brighter and more balanced visual effect. 

6. Focus on the other requirements

If you are looking to install multiple lights, it is important to have separate controls for each one of them. This will let you dictate the amount of light depending on your exact requirements. This will also help you save on your utility bill. 

You may want to add an additional dimmer for your kitchen island area to make it more special and attractive.

Now that you know everything that you need to about kitchen island lighting, what are you waiting for? Pick the one that suits you best and start renovating your house today!

How to Choose the Right Kitchen Island Lighting was last modified: February 15th, 2020 by Billy Guteng
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