Adding layers of light and other tips for enhancing the most popular gathering space in your home.

Using frosted globe light bulbs with recessed fixtures creates an inviting atmosphere.Bring your kitchen to life with carefully chosen and thoughtfully placed lighting fixtures. Whether preparing a meal or hosting a casual get-together, you’ll love how multiple layers of light can change your kitchen’s mood to suit the moment. A well-designed plan provides ideal lighting for every situation.

Begin by imagining all the activities that will take place here – dining on the island, food preparation on the counter, reading the morning newspaper – and consider layering light in such a way that will help you be the most productive and comfortable in this space.

When considering general lighting needs, even light distribution and flexibility are essential. Consider recessed fixtures spaced evenly throughout the kitchen, with additional lighting positioned above islands, working countertops, sinks and ranges.

Have you noticed that when you entertain, your guests end up in the kitchen with you? You can create a visual separation between the cooking and socializing areas in the kitchen by using lighting.

Pendant lighting over the island or counter can act as a visual separation for the room. The lighting experts at GE, for example, recommend frosted globe light bulbs because they eliminat harsh glare on countertops.

In order to define and light your work space, mount under-cabinet lighting fixtures on the leading edge on the underside of the wall cabinets – this will light the front edge of the kitchen work surface.

Create a self-service area for guests. Select an area of cabinets and countertop separate from the food preparation area. With floodlights to wash the area with light, your guests will find the food and beverages you’ve set out for them.

Step-by-step directions follow below. For more information about choosing the right light bulb or for tips on lighting a variety of rooms in your home, visit


  • Install accent lights, such as pendant lighting, over the kitchen island to create a visual divide between the cooking and entertaining spaces in the kitchen.
  • Change out existing floodlights to bring out tex-tures in countertops; use halogen frosted globes.
  • Use puck (under-cabinet) lighting for kitchen tasks; use halogen bulbs.
  • Add accent lighting in kitchen cabinets to high-light collectibles and fine china.
  • Create a self-service area for guests by display-ing drinks, barware and snacks in space away from the food preparation.
  • Add light dimmers to provide alternate mood settings in the kitchen (optional).


  • Pendant light conversion kit (if applicable)
  • 10-inch ceiling medallions
  • Glass shelving (if applicable)
  • Ice bucket
  • Spice rack
  • Stainless steel utensil holders
  • Silver towel holder
  • Silver platter
  • Dimmer switch (optional)
  • Puck light kit (under-cabinet lighting)
  • GE Edison halogen bulbs (double-pin T3 Quartz 20-watt recommended)
  • GE Revealhalogen floodlights (PAR38,75-watt recommended)
  • GE Reveal frosted globe (40-watt recommended)

Because the kitchen is such a high traffic area, particularly for large families or for those who entertain a great deal, don’t forget about your flooring in this room. In addition to considering durability, you don’t want to spend time and money investing in enhanced lighting and décor only to have it spotlight an unattractive floor covering underfoot!