The importance of lighting in your kitchen

While homes can be exposed to plenty of natural light with a glass roof and large wide-opening windows and glass doors, extra illumination is required on overcast days, at nights, in dark corners and especially in kitchens to maximise visibility in its working areas.


As kitchens have become large, open-plan, multi-functional spaces with zones for dining, living and meal preparation, a flexible lighting plan is essential to meet the functions of the different zones. 


Smart, effective lighting can completely transform a kitchen but it is very often overlooked and given less priority at the design stage. Good kitchen interior design will combine these 3 types of lighting: task lighting, accent lighting and general or ambient lighting.


Ambient lighting

Ambient lighting can be functional and/or decorative, providing just enough of a gentle glow and, without any intense glare, over a specific area so that one can function in it. It’s ideal in a kitchen which doubles up as a dining space. Dimmers to reduce the brightness of the main source of light over your kitchen will enable you to control the mood and atmosphere suitable for any occasion – whether a family meal, a romantic meal for two or for entertaining your dinner guests. On trend, are appealing pendant lights or an alluring chandelier-type fixture suspended above, and making an aesthetic focal point of an island centred in the middle of the kitchen.


Accent lighting 

Accent lighting is lighting concentrated on to highlight special features of a kitchen like

  • dark corners
  • inside glass-doored cabinets to showcase special glasses or a prized china collection
  • under cabinets to illuminate what is below them e.g. the countertop
  • a recessed row underneath the island countertop overhang creating a subtle ambience
  • a row around the toe kicks of cabinets and islands to emphasise the small space and to reveal a safe walkway to guide your way.


Task lighting

Task lighting, the most important lighting for a kitchen, should be bright spotlights, strategically positioned and directed onto work surfaces so that home chefs can see what they are doing. In the kitchen safety is critical as food preparation very often involves potentially dangerous appliances, sharp utensils and cooking methods. With adequate visibility, undercooked meat, rotten products and bits of food not thoroughly cleaned up or cleared away can be more easily detected. Under cabinet lighting can be a handy addition as it is crucial that the meal preparation and cooking areas be well-illuminated.


Lighting doesn’t have to be boring: there’s a plethora of beautiful choices which can highlight the charming features of your home and create warm, inviting moods and spaces. It is the lighting’s functionality in a kitchen that is of paramount importance which is why we recommend trusting your kitchen design to a specialist kitchen designer who has the expertise to bring your dream kitchen to light!

To view some of our amazing completed kitchen design projects, follow this link:


Don’t overlook lighting when designing a kitchen – it can make or break the success of your kitchen design!

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