March 12, 2010, Newsletter Issue #192: Decorative Kitchen Lighting

Tip of the Week

Kitchen Lighting Guide: The great singer Pearl Bailey once said, "My kitchen is a mystical place, a kind of temple for me." It's a safe bet that Pearl Bailey's kitchen had mood lighting. Lighting for kitchens creates an atmosphere, a homey feeling, as well as a safe and efficient environment for cooking. You have recessed lighting with dimmers to provide overall light, and there's a little thing known as the sun. But those pine-cone or rooster wall sconces look so great with your country cottage kitchen theme.

In Joan Kohn's IT'S YOUR KITCHEN, a pair of candle wall sconces enhance a kitchen desk inside an arched recess. Sinuous curves of a pendant light fixture with a white lamp shade echo a graceful flower in a countertop vase. Study kitchen design books to get kitchen lighting design ideas. Also, think back to your own childhood. What was the lighting like in your grandmother's kitchen? Your childhood kitchen memories or even restaurant interior design can also give you great kitchen lighting ideas. Some of our suggestions: Homey is better. Wooden or rustic-looking table lamps and wall sconces create the image that, like Martha, you designed and built your own kitchen. For white cabinetry and appliances, the more kitchen light, the merrier. Feel free to use kitchen lighting fixtures that contrast with the light colors. Choose country French or Mediterranean decorative sconces and lamps if you're recreating a kitchen from a chateau in Normandy, a villa in Tuscany or a house in the Greek islands. If your kitchen is all-metal, choose steel or iron finish for your lamps, chandeliers and wall sconces.You can't go wrong with a Tiffany chandelier or sconce to add color. The stained glass echoes some of Pearl Bailey's mystical aura. For many people, cooking is a spiritual experience.

Don't be surprised if, after installing your decorative lighting, you sing while boiling water and hear the wings of angels.

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Linda Handiak