Inspirational product design eMagazine
Many older homes suffer due to a dark kitchen that is lacking in natural light. Nothing seems sadder in a home than a gloomy kitchen. The kitchen ought to be the heart of the home, so bringing light into this all-important room makes a massive difference to people’s enjoyment of the space, and it becomes a room people want to gather and linger in.
There are also practical reasons for wishing to bring more light into one’s kitchen: It’s much easier to prepare and serve food when you can see what you’re doing!
A lighter kitchen can appear more spacious than a dark one, so bringing more light into the space – particularly natural light – can make it feel less cramped and poky. One option in a small kitchen is to fit an overhead skylight or to open up the kitchen into adjacent rooms, so that the light from the living room, for example, flows naturally into the kitchen area.
Lighter color schemes
Light can be brought into the kitchen in different ways – for example using light color schemes in both wall and decor, strategic use of lighting, etc. Lighter colors work because white reflects light, which is bounced back into the room instead of being absorbed into the hard surface, so think white or pastel-colored walls and white cabinetry. You don’t need to remodel your entire kitchen: simply paint your existing cabinetry in a lighter color, or invest in some new doors to hang on the existing cupboards. Vary the all-white feel with pastel-colored tones or pale marble textures.
Clever use of lighting
Natural lighting is not sufficient on its own: Even in a large kitchen with plenty of windows, artificial lighting is essential once night falls. Spot lighting in specific areas is especially useful in the kitchen, for example the use of recessed lighting under high wall cupboards to light up kitchen worktops or chic and elegant pendant lamps over a breakfast bar or dining table, which come in a vast number of styles, from vintage and country to sleek and metropolitan. Another option is track lighting, which comes in curved as well as straight tracks to suit the design of your kitchen. Remember that LED lighting is more energy-efficient, making it not just greener but also more cost-effective.
Get rid of dark window treatments
Consider changing your window treatments from dark fabrics and heavy drapes to lighter, sheer materials. Dark, heavy drapes absorb a lot of the natural light, while light-colored cottons and linens allow the light to bounce off them. Alternatively, you could get rid of the drapes completely and choose to add shutters instead: This is especially tempting if your kitchen looks out over an attractive, scenic view. Plantation shutters allow much more natural light into a space than traditional shutters, and come in many different styles and louver sizes. They are a smart and versatile solution for bringing natural light into the kitchen, and add a rustic, welcoming look to any home that is as modern as it is traditional.