Most breakfast nooks have many windows and consequently a lot of natural light. Sunlight is, of course the best type of lighting for almost any situation. However, there are times that you need artificial light like at night or on a particularly cloudy day. There are several options for lighting in your nook and which one you choose depends on several factors.
The first decision you need to make about your lighting is whether you want to use overhead lighting or lamps. Most rooms in your home benefit from a combination of both. However, lamps might not be the most appropriate in the kitchen. Typically, your breakfast nook will have just a table and chairs. Many breakfast nook sets have benches that are up against the wall. This does not leave much room for additional furniture to hold a lamp. Because you want to seat as many people as possible, you will probably try to put the largest table you can in the space you have. This will not leave much room for floor lamps either. Floor lamps could get in the way when you are trying to pull a chair out or push it in. Therefore, overhead lighting will probably be the best option.
What kind of overhead lighting should you install? There are many possibilities, but the two main choices are with recessed lighting or with hanging light fixtures. There are positives and negatives to both choices. Your factor that could affect your choice is the shape of your table. If you have a round or square table, then a single hanging light fixture directly overhead will light the eating space evenly. However, if you have a long rectangular table, then a single hanging light might leave the ends of the table in relative darkness. In this instance, you could choose a hanging light fixture that is rectangular as well or you could use recessed lighting. Recessed lighting allows you to light a space in any way you like. You are not forced into any configuration by the shape of a fixture or the location of the bulbs. You can point recessed lighting sources in any direction and install as many as necessary to light the entire room. Experts say that to light the room most appropriately, you should overlap the areas illuminated by your recessed lighting by approximately forty percent.
Whatever type of lighting you decide on; there are some features you can add that will make any lighting design better. One such feature is a dimmer switch. Because you will not have the benefit of a lamp to softly light the room if you desire, the dimmer switch allows you to change the mood of the room whenever you like. If you want to have a romantic dinner, the combination of candlelight and overhead lights, dimmed low, sets the perfect mood. Another way to achieve different levels of lighting without employing lamps is to use a light fixture that has several levels. There are hanging chandeliers that have one central light bulb and then several smaller bulbs around it. Then on the light switch, you can have three choices. One choice would be to turn only the center light on, the second would be to turn only the outer lights on, and the third would be for both to be on. This is not as smooth as a dimmer but it can give you variety.
Whatever lighting system you decide to use in your breakfast nook, make sure that it is complimentary to your other décor. If you have a modern table and chairs then you can pick a modern light fixture or use recessed lighting. If your breakfast nook set is inspired more by country themes, then make sure your lighting reflects that as well.