lighting over surface mount medicine cabinet

kaypeakayDecember 12, 2007

Request for advice here regarding sconce lighting in our bathroom. We have two pedestal sinks along a wall that are on either side of a window. We have 24" wide surface mount medicine cabinets over the pedestal sinks. There isn't enough room on either side of the medicine cabs to place one-light sconces It is my understanding that side lighting is preferable, but we can't do it due to the space restraints. So, our electician put the hole for the light centered above where the medicine cabinet will be mounted. We have a can light in the walk in shower space, and no center light fixture. The bath is smallish, but has a nice window as described above.

My questions are:

Would you recommend using a 2 or 3 light glass shade sconce? (is 2 enough light?)

Given the fact that the med cabs stick out from the wall approximately 5 inches, would it be better to get a one-light, swing-arm (fabric shade) sconce, or, if using a 2 or 3 light glass shade sconce, would you point the bulbs up or down?

I guess I am worried that the light won't hit the person using the mirror, but will go directly onto the top of the medicine cabinet if the bulbs point down. I am also worried that if we went with a single swing arm sconce, it would look a little goofy and alone in the space over the mirror, but maybe not?

If you have any suggestions or advice, I would love to hear it! And, if you have had to deal with surface mount med cabs and lighting, and have pics, I would love to see what you did.



Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I use a three light bar in oak above a 30" cabinet. The shower/tub has a light in the vent fixture and the light bar provides the main illumination.

    Bookmark   December 12, 2007 at 11:33PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Whatever fixture you select, check the maximum wattage of the bulb(s) it allows,

Also, consider a fixture that bounces the light up. We had to replace a fixture over a surface mounted cabinet, and we found one that could be mounted up or down. Down wouldn't clear the cabinet door opening, so we mounted it up. The lighting is more than adequate for shaving and makeup.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2007 at 8:19PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thanks for the responses - I think I will look for a 2 or three light glass shade fixture that can be mounted facing up.

BTW, suero, how many watts per bulb would be considered sufficient, if you know?

    Bookmark   December 13, 2007 at 10:36PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

We have two 60 watt bulbs in the fixture facing up, but the fixture can take up to 2 100 watt bulbs. This is a small bathroom, and the light is sufficient.

In our master bath, which is much bigger, we have a fixture over each of the two medicine cabinets. Each takes two bulbs, again with 100 watt maximum, and we have two 75 watt bulbs in each fixture. We also have a light/fan/heat unit over the area just outside the shower, a light in the shower (40 watt), and a recessed light in the toilet compartment. We can fit 3 of the smaller bathroom into the master bathroom.

    Bookmark   December 15, 2007 at 3:36PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I have the same issue. The problem with the over the cabinet lights (two or three) is they are not designed to protrude enough from the wall to provide direct light, in fact the cabinet will likely cause a shadow line. Our cabinets come out 4 - 4 1/2 inches. I have a three bulb light I like and am thinking of having someone make a box that will match the cabinets. The box would be the same depth, surface mount, wood, stain and design as the cabinets... Has anyone seen lights that are designed for a surface mount medicine cabinet that do not look like the cheap exposed bulb or florescent variety?

    Bookmark   December 31, 2007 at 4:27PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Shower door for neo-angle
If you have a neo-angle shower where the tiled walls...
Where to place/plan for grab bars
We are remodeling our hall bathroom (and kitchen)....
Contractor messed up shower pan. Fixable?
My contractor who I'm firing tomorrow messed up my...
amerec vs mr steam vs thermasol steam shower
Trying to choose a steam shower for a 4 x 5 shower...
Need advice on best mirror/sconce option in small master bath
My husband and I are FINALLY renovating our master...
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™