Choosing the right pendant lights for your kitchen island

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A kitchen island is a must-have if you have the space for them, who wouldn’t want a central hub for the whole family to gather around. Whether it’s a small space for food prep, holds the kitchen sink, or has a breakfast bar attached for people to sit, eat and socialise at, it’s certainly a focal point of the kitchen, and pendant lighting is the perfect way to highlight it.

As well as providing task lighting for the room, pendant lights can also be considered a big design element of the space, and give you the chance to add in a little more style to your kitchen, as opposed to having simply recessed spotlights.

kitchen island
Image via Idealhome.co.uk

If you’re considering adding pendant lights to your kitchen island, these are some of the things to consider beforehand.

Keep things proportionate

Consider both the size of the island and the size of the lights when choosing which pendant lights you want. Will there be enough space between each? Will they overcrowd the room? They don’t necessarily all have to fit within the space of the island, but it’s something to think about if you want them all hanging at the same height.

Light in the room

Will you need your pendant lighting to light the whole room, or will there be other sources of light? Consider what lighting you have already available in the kitchen, and use your pendant lighting to help fill in the gaps.

Consider functionality

How will you be using the kitchen island? If you’re going to be using it for food prep then you’re going to need task lighting for space, with bright lights that are aiming downwards so they’ll illuminate the area. If you want to use the area for more socialising then ambient lighting will be the best option.

The rule of three

It’s a basic design guideline, but when hanging pendant lights it’s best to stick to odd numbers, so that’s why you’ll often see three in a row because five would make it too crowded.

Consider dimmer switches

If your kitchen island will be used for a variety of things, such as chopping, eating or socialising, dimmer lights could be a good option. This means you have a choice when it comes to the brightness of the lights and can adjust them to suit the mood and occasion.

Hang them at the right height

You might want them to sit low enough to be a feature of the room, but you don’t want them too low where they’re going to hit people in the head. Remember to measure them before they’re installed whilst you’re using the island so you can get a feel if they’re at the right height.

Design choices

There are plenty of different styles and designs to choose from when it comes to pendant lighting, the most important thing to remember is that it fits with the style of your kitchen. Clear glass pendants will help to spread the light more effectively around the room, whilst metal pendant lights are only going to give you a downward stream of light, so take these things into consideration when picking your light.

A final tip

Make sure that when picking your pendant lighting for your kitchen island that the material is easy to clean. It’s likely that there will be a lot of cooking grease in the air in the kitchen, so fabric pendants are going to be a nightmare to clean. Choose metal or glass that can be easily wiped and cleaned regularly.