Tuesday, October 18, 2011

{31 Days to a Functional Kitchen} Day 18: Lighting

Proper lighting in any room is quintessential in providing function, ambiance and style.  It is important to have proper general lighting, task lighting and even ambient lighting to make a space "work" for you.  This is no more important than in the kitchen.  I am so excited to share a major project that we took on last week with regards to lighting in our kitchen.

We live in a tract home community where matching builder grade finishes can be found in most of the homes in the neighborhood.  While I must say, many of the "standard finishes" in our community are quite nice, they are still standard.  There is nothing unique about them.  The outdated, super basic, (dare I say) cheap can lights in our kitchen did not fall into the "nice" category.

We have considered many options for replacing these lights over the past year.  After seriously looking at different lighting options over the past couple of months, we finally went for it.  It all started with a light fixture that my Father-In-Law had purchased for over his pool table, but then changed his mind.  After looking at it, we decided it would be great in our kitchen, with a couple of simple modifications - longer chain (we have vaulted ceilings) and a can of Oil Rubbed Bronze spray paint to match the other lighting fixtures in the great room.

We brought it home, held it up in the kitchen and decided it would work great.  The new light had a clean style and would provide great light since it used 3 bulbs and would hang much closer to the work surface.

I will say, I was so excited, that I had the entire thing painted the next day.  I couldn't wait to get it hung up.  I am sure you all can related to the excitement of a new project.

With a little help from my darling husband and our wonderful neighbors' 12' ladder, we hung it up last weekend and it has been so awesome using this light this week in the kitchen.

As you can see in this photo, we still had the can lights in the other two locations.  We had looked at so many different options for these two lights but knew that we needed the hanging light up before we made our final decision.  After looking at several different varieties of track lights and other directional lights, we decided upon a 3-light round base fixture from Home Depot. 
We selected this fixture because it gives us the ability to utilize the existing mount locations, direct the lights to the desired work surfaces and was in the bronze tone that we were looking to match.  Another reason we liked this fixture is that it was all metal without a glass bowl around the lights.  As of right now, the light over our kitchen table and the new bar fixture have different color bowls - the new one is white while the table chandelier is more of an antiqued bowl.  At some point we may get these all to match but for now, they look fine.

We found this awesome fixture at our Habi-Store - New in the box for dirt cheap!
This hangs over the kitchen table in the dining nook.  I love the filigree.
Overall, the lighting project has been amazing.  The kitchen looks great and the new fixtures bring warmth and light to our kitchen. 

I still am considering under cabinet lighting in a couple of areas but for now, the new spot lights bring great task lighting to our work surfaces.


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