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The kitchen stands as one of the most frequented living spaces in our homes, serving the entire family at any given time. Whether compact or spacious, connected to the living area or secluded, boasting a dining table or a bar, central island, ample windows or a more dimly lit ambiance – each configuration has its own distinct character, and tailored solutions.

Daily life within these settings is just as diverse: from breakfast to coffee breaks, leisurely or quick cooking sessions, remote work or homework, to pre-dinner drinks and evening meals – the array of activities is vast.

This dynamic calls for versatile lighting, ranging from functional brightness to subdued ambient glow. To cater to these changing needs, incorporating multiple lighting circuits and, ideally, integrating dimming 💡 capabilities becomes paramount.

Here are some insightful suggestions for crafting a well-suited lighting setup.

Combine effective functional lighting, catering to cooking enthusiasts, with a gentle ambient glow, crafting moments of ease and delight in your kitchen.

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Functional lighting



Ensure a diffuse, uniform, and sufficiently intense illumination (between 300 and 500 lx 💡) on your work surfaces. It's advisable to avoid illuminating the floor between these work areas (which can cast shadows while cooking) or alternatively, employ supplementary, lower-intensity general lighting. This light source can emanate from the ceiling or from underneath upper cabinets, utilizing LED linear fixtures with effective diffusers or broad-optic spotlights. Additionally, the hood often features integrated lighting that complements this functional illumination.

  • Position lighting at the level of columns and upper cabinets to facilitate visibility within your storage. This can involve adjustable spotlights, more general lighting, or even indirect lighting through concealed troughs.
  • Opt for a dynamic color temperature 💡, such as warm white at 3000K, or neutral white at 4000K, if the ambiance (including materials) aligns.
  • Employ a high color rendering index 💡 (>90) to enhance the visual appeal of food items.
  • Incorporate your workspace or study area under this functional lighting.
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Ambient lighting



There are several ways of illuminating a stairwell, whether it is open or closed to the architecture. The most challenging part is to make sure that the steps are clearly distinguishable from one another.

Options:

  • General lighting from two or three wall lights along the length of the staircase. Choose space-saving models so as not to obstruct passageways, with a diffused and/or indirect effect. More graphic lighting effects are also possible.

  • General lighting with a large pendant, or even a chandelier (possibility of a "contemporary" composition) if the staircase is open to the hallway or living room, or smaller decorative pendants if the space is enclosed.

  • Linear lighting integrated into the handrail. Ideal for uniform step illumination, a cozy atmosphere (no upward lighting), and convenience for nighttime use.

  • Specific lighting for the steps with small wall sconces (recessed or semi-recessed) placed every two or three steps. This also creates a soft evening ambiance, but attention must be paid to light distribution (avoid creating shadows from one step to another), installation (multiple light points), and visual comfort (avoid glare during ascent).

Get inspired - Kitchen Lighting

Copyright LampTwist | Guide to residential lighting - Written and illustrated by Aurore Renard - www.aurore.studio