Kitchen

The key to achieving great kitchen lighting

Interior designer Alex Fulton dishes up some expert advice on achieving the perfect kitchen lighting look

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Design dilemmas solved

Hi Alex

We are currently doing up our kitchen and are a little stuck for ideas when it comes to lighting up our kitchen island area. We have searched high and low on the internet for inspiration but then get stuck when it comes to sourcing what we like. We are not that keen on three pendants in a line, which is what so many people have. We want to do something different but still effective for its task.

Rich and Amber, Christchurch (via Facebook)

Alex’s lighting advice 

Lighting can make or break a space, especially in a kitchen where there are both practical and decorative needs. Finding a lighting solution that covers both bases is tricky, but well worth putting in the effort to get a look that works for you and your design/functional needs. 

Asking an expert in this field is extremely beneficial as they have ideas as well as product knowledge that could save you time and internet scrolling! Tina Stephen from Roomie is a lighting specialist and she has some crazy-good ideas that will help your kitchen be different but still effective. Tina says: “Downlights are far and away the most efficient lighting for task areas, especially for island benches, but if you are keen on the aesthetic of pendants, there are a few options which avoid the ‘three in a row’ configuration.

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A tiered cluster of lights is a great way to avoid the typical ‘three-in-a-row’ configuration. Photography by Simon Devitt.

 

You could choose a tiered cluster of three at one end of the bench, then offset that with one or two downlights at the other end of the bench (depending on the length). Another dramatic look is to play with a sense of scale, and choose two oversized pendants spaced evenly along the bench, usually on either side of the sink area.” Tina also suggests having all kitchen lights on a dimmer, and to balance these with the correct amount of task and ambient light in the remainder of the kitchen and adjacent areas.

Words by Alex Fulton. Photography by: Alex Fulton/Simon Devitt.

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