Need a lighting plan

slush1422May 9, 2011

Hello Lords of Lumens,

Cabinets are ordered, appliances are on their way, demo has begun!

Lights? Oh yeah lights, we need those too!

We've just assumed we'd have can lights and some pendants, but as GW has done to us with many other things, it took our original assumptions and turned them upside down, and we need some help.

We will definitely have UCLs, Pendants over the island (maybe sink too). Or maybe we shouldn't have pendants and have a chandelier?

But for the general lighting? Seems that florescent tubes are the most efficient (unfortunately, the least sexy to us). So we are thinking of some flush/semi flush mount ceiling lights for the general lighting.

So we need some help in figuring out how we determine how many we need, what kind (not style, just kind, like CFL. LED, or what), and where to place them.

Let me sum up.

o - Should we use any cans?

o - Pendants or chandelier over the island (it will have seating for five in the L shape)

o - how do we determine how many flush mount lights to use and where to place them?

Here's a basic layout of the new kitchen: From Kitchen Design Plans

As usual here, I'm sure the answers to these questions will create more as well as begin to calm our nerves.

Thank you all.

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I should say it is a nice layout. I am a new here, I am afraid I can not provide you professional plan. Hope someone else will help you.

    Bookmark   May 11, 2011 at 4:05AM
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I'm strongly opposed to any cans at all in kitchens. They provide very poor general illumination.

I think you are on the right track with your other choices. I'm not an expert, but for a room that size I would consider around 3-4 surface mount fixtures for general illumination, adding one large or two small pendants with translucent shades over the island. I'd recommend installing as many switches as possible so you can light only areas that need it.

If your area doesn't require high efficacy lighting, I'd install fixtures that can take retrofit (Edison base) compact fluorescents. Other than linear fluorescents, that is about as economical as lighting gets these days, and it is very versatile with many choices in light quality.

LED has great potential, but for the present it is still costly - and also most are too directional for general lighting. However, if you require dimming, it may be worth looking into.

Dimming is possible with CF, but it generally works better with LED.

Undercounter lighting (T4/T5 fluorescent or LED) would be a good idea if you can afford it.

Others may have more suggestions for you.

    Bookmark   May 12, 2011 at 12:51AM
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I think that you will find that CFL lights in cans in combination with under counter LED lighting and possibly pendants over the island will give you plenty of light. Dimmable CFL's in cans are a very effective way to provide plenty of useful light in the kitchen work area. Be sure to set your overhead lights up on several separate dimmer controls for the most in lighting control.

    Bookmark   May 12, 2011 at 11:01AM
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Davidr - it's actually after reading several of your responses (and I think another David on GW) re: cans that we are leaning towards NOT having them. It really is a struggle though to find any pictures of completed kitchens that do not have cans and show how a few flush mounts look instead. It's so frustrating. Cans seem the easy solution, easy to pick out, easy to know spacing, and how many. With the flush/semi flush mount there are so many more options and potential problems. Well maybe problems isn't the correct word.

Cans seem cheaper, but then again you need so many more, so maybe they are not cheaper. Also we have 8 ft ceilings so if we did a semi flush mount would that look okay or be too busy or even in the way. It's hard to know where to place them. Would we just put one in each of the four corners around the island? I'm on a mission today to make a decision and find some semi/flush mounts that would look good in our kitchen and that do not look like a boob! (am i allowed to say that here?)

I'm glad you suggested 3-4 mounts, at least that gives us a starting point. We are planning on having either a chandelier or a couple of pendants on the island.

Roadbike-DH is a roadie as well, but with this kitchen remodel, it's been weeks since he's been able to get out and ride :(

    Bookmark   May 13, 2011 at 12:37PM
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