A kitchen is often the heart of the home - your family will want to spend a lot of time in there, cooking and spending time together. If you kitchen is in the basement or in a dark area of the house it can make it seem gloomy and you won't want to spend so much time in there. It is reasonably easy to brighten up the kitchen space though - here are some tips on the best way to brighten a dark kitchen using lighting. You will be amazed at how new light fixtures can create the illusion of more space.
LED ceiling spotlights
A really effective way of lighting your kitchen is to use LED ceiling spotlights. You can put as many as you need in over the area, they look clean and modern and give off a bright light. They are also cheap to run and won't need changing for a few years. You can have them recessed into the ceiling and even get ones that you can angle so the light can reach particularly dark areas of the room. If you have white cabinets or white worktop this will definitely make your kitchen look brighter and bigger as the light will reflect off them.
Pendant lights are my favourite for a kitchen - I think they look great over a kitchen island or breakfast bar and not only add light to the room but they also make a statement and contribute to the style and decor of the space. I really like this black pendant kitchen light - I think it makes a statement and you could hang three in a row together over an island to provide lots of light and also a feature for the room. With this style you can change the light bulbs inside as it is on show and you can get some funky bulbs which are a great way to show a little personality!
A light tunnel, or sun tunnel, is another clever way of getting some light into a dark room - and it would be natural light too. These work by routing sunlight from a sunny part of the roof, through a tunnel in the ceiling and out through an opening in the desired room. These require a bit of installation and might not be an easy way of getting more light into a room but the advantage is that they provide natural light which waxes and wanes along with the natural daylight outside.
If your kitchen is an extension or has nothing above it you could consider putting in large velux windows in the ceiling. These would let in lots of natural light and would really brighten up and open up the space. You can even get self cleaning glass or special window treatments for if you were worried about how you would clean them. If you haven't got the room for a large velux window, try to squeeze in a small window somewhere as every bit of natural light makes a difference.
A unique and modern way to light your kitchen is by using under cabinet lighting. The beauty of cabinet lights is that you can use them alongside other lighting systems in the room and it will just add a little something extra. We have them in our kitchen and I use them in the evening when we only need a glow of light and the bright spotlights and pendant lights are too much. I also think that they make a space look well defined and stylish too. You can choose the light color too to make the look more interesting.
Don't underestimate the power of decor. A small, dark space will feel much brighter if you have white walls and white cupboards and reflective surfaces such as mirrors and stainless steel appliances. The light will catch on the white and silver surfaces and reflect about, therefore making the most of what little light you might have. Change to a white backsplash adds depth and opens up the room. Paint walls, dark cabinets and doors in a lighter color and you will see an immediate improvement. Choose a bright white paint to brighten dark corners - simple changes really make a big difference, especially if you have a small space.
You can also add lighting through decor using neon signs. These are great pieces of art which are really unique and a great talking point, as well as adding some light to a dark corner of a room.
Future proof your kitchen design
If you are renovating your small, dark kitchen because it isn't in good condition, there are definitely some things that you should keep in mind if you want a bright space. Avoid dark wood cabinets and go for a white kitchen cabinets, paired with a stainless steel fridge and appliances to give the illusion of more light - the stainless steel and the white colours will reflect the light. Light grey or white color granite countertops will help a dark kitchen feel brighter too. Large ceiling lights are the oldest trick in the book for creating a light space and keeping to a neutral color scheme with only 3 colours will make the space appear more put together and pleasing on the eye. Opt for soft, pastel colours / lighter shades and neutrals rather than bright color for the entire kitchen to keep the feeling of space. If you have enough storage space consider sacrificing a couple of wall cabinets in favour of open shelving as this will create the air of more space and light.
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