By: Paul S. Cilwa Viewed: 9/24/2018
Posted: 3/1/2010
Topics/Keywords: #HomeImprovements Page Views: 3231
In which we install new lighting in our kitchen.

Regular readers may recall we moved into a new house…our own house…in October. I've been posting photos of its rooms as we make changes. This weekend we had our friend Greg come over to help put in some new kitchen lights, as well as a few other things.

Let's start with the lights. When we moved in, the kitchen was outfitted with five light fixtures such as the one shown to the right. As it happens, the same type of fixtures were used in the house we rented several years ago in Peoria, on the other side of the Valley. We hated them. There's something wrong with the fundamental design of this lamp. It runs though bulbs the way Britney Spears runs through relationships. As an example, all the bulbs worked when we moved in, in October. By this past Friday, half had burnt out.

I wanted something less directional, simpler, and inexpensive. I had seen fixtures I liked at Lowes and Home Depot for around $20 apiece. But I happened to be in Ikea last week and was amazed to see exactly the fixtures I wanted, for only $4 each! So I snagged four of them and contacted Greg to do the installation.

Greg Coppens is a professional handyman who previously built the door to Michael's massage treatment room where there had been an open archway. He does excellent work at a reasonable price, and it's nice that he has so many skills that he can be useful on a wide range of projects. So he was a natural to put in the lights.

Could I have done it? Maybe, but it turned out the screw holes in the Scandinavian fixtures didn't match the ones on the built-in light fixture mounts. I would have agonized over it, but Greg solved the problem easily by drilling new, matching holes in the fixtures.

I completed the job with one energy-saving, soft-white, instant-on, fluorescent bulb, a 100-watt equivalent (using about 26 watts), in each of the four fixtures.

Here's the end result. Granted, you can't really make out the lamps for the glow, but that's the idea: I didn't want the lamps to stand out.

Kitchen with new lighting.

You'll note that I left the fifth old fixture in place. That light is on a different switch, and I want to replace it with a hanging light over the sink. But I haven't found that light yet.

Here's our kitchen from another angle.

Kitchen from another angle.

The painting on the wall, over the water cooler, is one Michael painted, by the way…just another of his many talents.

I did not show the refrigerator because we will be getting a new one in a few weeks (as soon as my tax return comes in).

Michael wants to someday replace these cabinets with some that go all the way to the ceiling. It'll probably be awhile before that happens, though!