The $25 Lighting Hack That Transformed My Kitchen (And Didn’t Require an Electrician)
This brilliant idea will give your kitchen a cozy glow.
In any space, you want to have a mix of multiple types of lighting: Ambient light (usually overhead or from your windows) to generally illuminate the room, task lighting, so you can see whatever you’re working on, and accent lighting, to create mood and softness in a space. But as the nights have been getting darker earlier, I noticed that my kitchen was pretty dim. I often have quite a bit to do after the kids go to bed, and it’s extremely hard to motivate when I’ve just left one cozy, dark room and gone into another cozy, dark room. Alas, I think 8:30 p.m. is too early a bedtime for me!
What was missing, especially on the section of the counter where I frequently sit at the computer, was task lighting. I spend a lot of time there filling out school forms, planning the day ahead, and finishing up work. It was dark enough that I couldn’t totally see when I was writing things by hand, and it was making me sleepy. Basically, the light in my kitchen was telling me it was bedtime. I needed an under-cabinet light, and STAT.
Since I’m not interested in tearing up the walls and hiring an electrician, I wanted a stand-alone light that wouldn’t require hardwiring and that I could install myself. Preferably something low-profile enough that it wouldn’t be obvious underneath my cabinets. And white, because my cabinets are white and I don’t want anyone to see it.
The perfect solution: this White Under-Cabinet LED Puck Light Kit at Lamps Plus ($25 for two). Once it arrived, it took minutes to install the batteries and adhere one to the bottom of the cabinet right above my desk area. The light is 3 1/2 inches in diameter and only 1 1/2-inches tall, so you can’t really see it underneath the cabinet. And it worked!
Now, at nights, I switch that baby on (you can press it with your hand, or use a remote) as I get to work, and it is legitimately easier to stay awake. I installed the other light above my food prep zone to help with making lunches, and I'm finally able to see what I’m doing as I chop up carrots. If you’re looking to add a little lighting to a dim kitchen, this could be an easy fix for you, too.