It's easy to forget just how important lighting is. When you're revamping your kitchen, you're probably thinking about colour schemes, flooring and appliances, rather than lights. But good lighting can make the difference between a room that's nice enough and a room that's stylish, welcoming, and an all-round pleasure to spend time in. Here are a few of our tips on lighting up the heart of your home...
Size is everything
Large pendant lights or chandelier-style lights are probably best suited to larger kitchens, unless you've got high ceilings. So if space is at a premium, spotlights, artfully-placed downlights and even floor-level lights are your new best friends.
If you do have a spacious kitchen, make the most of it! A striking pendant light suspended above your peninsular or island creates an attractive focal point in the room.
Make your life easy
Don't skimp on kitchen lighting - it's the room that makes a house a home, after all. Downlights under your wall cabinets are incredibly useful for food prep in the evenings, while floor-level lighting in a spacious kitchen is the epitome of contemporary cool. Make sure your cooking space is well-lit, and if you have a breakfast bar or dining table and chairs in your kitchen, consider how you're going to light those areas. Anything too bright or low-hanging won't make for relaxed meal times, but you don't want the space to feel too dark and dingy, either.
LED lights are a little pricier than standard halogen lights, but they're more energy-efficient, and will last far longer. The average halogen light lasts for 3,000 hours - while LED lights can go on for up to 40,000 hours. Plus, LEDs are the eco-friendly choice. There's no contest really, is there?
Getting your colours right
Think about the colour scheme you have or are planning for your kitchen, and match the lights accordingly. With LED bulbs, you can often choose between 'warm white' and 'cool white'. In most spaces, and particularly in small kitchens, you'll probably want a warmer light, as it's softer and more welcoming. The colour of your cabinet doors is another important factor to consider - a chic dark grey like Super Matt Graphite works beautifully when paired with slightly warm-toned lighting. If you love a fresh, modern, minimalist, look, pair High Gloss White doors with cool-toned lighting.