recessed lighting kitchen plan 411!

ejspeedySeptember 15, 2009


we're in the midst of finalizing our kitchen lighting plan and would love to get any feedback on whether people think our plan looks reasonable.

our main concerns:

(1) whether or not to keep the recessed lighting centered across the traffic paths (see below) or whether to move them closer to the upper cabinets - we want the room evenly lit but we also don't want to cast odd shadows

(2) do we have enough lighting fixtures? does the spacing seem adequate? it's roughly 4' on center between each light. we also think it's important to keep the plan evenly spaced (see other image below).

(3) are the recessed lights too close to the proposed chandelier (which will be centered above the kitchen table)?

key points:

- ceiling height is roughly 8.5'.

- we're planning on 3" LV white/white recessed lights

- we're planning on off-white cabinetry (24" lower cabs/12" upper cabs with either black or white countertops.

- we plan on some form of task lighting under the cabinets

- we plan on (3) pendants above the island

- room is roughly 15x19

kitchen layout:

ceiling plan (to get a sense of the layout):

also, we live in nyc and visited a number of lighting places in the bowery and came across a recessed lighting manufacturer called "Elite" - they seem to be out of california but can find VERY little on them. they are very reasonably priced but it seems to good too be true. anyone have any experience with them?

here's a link to the spec we're interested in:

any advice, thoughts, or comments would be very appreciated!



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here's my comments
The 4 recessed fixtures over the table are not needed.
You can install 2 recessed over the table in line with the fixture to better light the table is it's to be used for any tasks , like reading or writing.
Never use white interior baffles, as, while they look great if you look at your ceiling(there's no reason to, however), as soon as you turn them on, you will have "glare bombs" to detract from your beautiful kitchen.Install clear alzak, haze, or black cones
Don't install recessed in your pantry or closet, as recessed lighting will not give you effective lighting.
Just use a small incandescent fixture

    Bookmark   September 17, 2009 at 7:57PM
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I dislike recessed lights used in kitchen path ways or in areas where people will be standing. I think it is uncomfortable to be standing at the sink or at a counter preparing a meal, with a hot recessed light on top of me. Try to more the recessed lights closer to the counters or eliminate them. Instead, use 6 or 8 hanging globe type lights on the island (mounted 2 - 2 - 2 - 2). This will give lots of ambient light to the room, and sufficient spillover to light the sink counter and the area near the kitchen table.

On the kitchen table, place 2 recessed lights on either side, in line with the chandelier. Use the adjustable tilt recessed fixtures. This will allow you to provide lots of light onto the table surface without having to have a massively bright chandelier.

Try to have different blocks of lights on different switches. The island lights should definitely be switched separately, on dimmers. The chandelier should be switched separately from the recessed lights.

I also agree that you should not use recessed lights in the pantry. A simple glass fixture will give better light.

Think of lighting as 3 layers - ambient, task, and accent. For practical purposes, ambient and task are the most important. Recessed lighting only provides task lighting. MR16 lights are also hot. find one at the light showroom and stand under it and you will see.

A document that really helped me was the Juno Aculux Residential Lighting catalog, found on the Juno Lighting website. It has lots of explanation on baffle colors, bulbs, and fixtures.

Good luck...

Here is a link that might be useful: Juno residential lighting catalog

    Bookmark   September 23, 2009 at 1:11AM
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thanks guys, this has been very helpful. we have taken your advice on a lot of these points and come up with a redesign of our plan. will post shortly.

in the meantime, as far as recessed lighting manufacturers go.. does anyone have any experience with jesco lighting?


    Bookmark   September 28, 2009 at 8:07PM
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Hello, When I look at your plans I am amazed at the similarity in our layouts. I am still in the construction/set up phase of my remodel. I am interested to know what you ended up doing with your lighting and how everything looks. I have a 5 x 8 island and a 3 x 9 dining room table running parallel just as you do, as well as a 5 x 6 walk in pantry like yours. I'd love to see final pictures of your kitchen. Could you upload some?
Thanks, Bridget

    Bookmark   August 23, 2010 at 5:25PM
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