When it comes to designing the perfect lighting plan for your kitchen, you may be immediately drawn to glitzy, statement-making pendants and chandeliers. But what about considering a quieter light fixture, one that makes the case for practicality and style?
Here, we'll direct you to wall lighting: specifically, the often overlooked, humble, yet totally chic wall sconce. What exactly is a wall sconce? Well, as the name suggests, this fixture is installed on the wall and is reminiscent of old school oil lamps and candle lanterns that people used before electricity came along. Today, there are a wide variety of options, styles, sizes, and finishes to choose from. Even the light bulb you select can make a difference. For instance, an LED bulb will save you energy and will last longer, and Edison bulbs will add a hint of vintage-industrial flair.
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In the kitchen, wall sconce lighting can prove helpful when trying to brighten up dark nooks and crannies or give a workspace extra illumination. And bonus, these fixtures can be dimmable, too. According to HomeAdvisor, to hardwire this handy form of task lighting, you'll need to plan on spending $50 to $250 for professional installation. However, if this isn't an option for you, nowadays there are plug-in wall sconces available, too.
If a wall sconce (or two, or three) is sounding better and better to you for your kitchen refresh, look to these 10 spaces for even more inspiration.
1. Make it an artistic moment.
A kitchen wall doesn't have to be all function. Remember form, too, and think of wall sconces as a chance to enhance the home decor you're including in your space. That's what Dabito of Old Brand New did in this contemporary kitchen — he added to the whimsical feel of the overall design by installing artistic wall sconces above the floating shelf and patterned tile backsplash.
Get the look: Hudson Valley Lighting Herkimer Wall Sconce in Aged Brass, $670
2. Spotlight shelving.
And speaking of shelving, why settle for one when you can adorn your walls with a trio? Anastasia of The Identité Collective enlisted black gooseneck wall lamps to bring tons of contrast and ambiance to her open shelves.
3. Go for cohesion.
Groups of wall sconces really look their best when they're all the same style. It'll bring a consistent look and feel to your cook space, something that Jenna of Jenna Sue Design Co. did when she picked these vintage-style sconces with milk glass shades. Complete the look with a retro stove and an antique-inspired faucet and pot filler.
Get the look: Kenroy Home Cambridge Sconce, $85.53
4. Shed some light on a sink.
We all spend a lot of time at the kitchen sink, draining pasta, cutting veggies, or washing dishes. So it goes without saying that this task-oriented area should get plenty of light, and a wall sconce is a perfect fixture for the job. Garrett and Cathy of The Grit and Polish went with a midcentury modern, double wall sconce to cast even more light on the basin.
Get the look: Phansthy Glass Wall Sconce, $132.21
5. Stick to your color palette.
Wall sconces can be an opportunity to reinforce the color palette in your kitchen even more. For example, if your culinary space is dotted in ebony hues, like this one belonging to Taryn Whiteaker, opt for a barn light or two flaunting a matte black finish. Take it a step further and punctuate the look with an LED wall sconce with Edison-style bulbs.
6. Light up a corner.
A wall sconce, particularly a plug-in option that can go anywhere, is oh-so-helpful in a dark corner of your cook space. For instance, Christina of Sun Soul Style wanted to bring extra light to this corner so she could fully see her kitchen storage cart.
Get the look: Worley's Lighting Leyland Sconce, $349
7. Keep it minimal.
You don't need lighting fixtures with multiple bulbs to add lots of illumination in one area of your kitchen. Actually, a one-light wall sconce will do quite nicely, something that's even more welcome in a minimalist cook space. The brass and marble wall lamp in this setup styled by Kristina Lynne will surely light up the sink beautifully.
Get the look: Mitzi by Hudson Valley Lighting Chloe 1-Light Aged Brass Wall Sconce in Style B, $150
8. Match the finishes.
If you have a dominating finish in your kitchen, such as antique brass, consider shopping for wall sconces with the same metallic sheen. That's exactly what Jessica Brigham did in this cook space with the help of these lustrous wall-mounted beauties that perfectly mirror the drawer pulls seen throughout.
9. Opt for an adjustable kitchen sconce.
Adjustable wall sconces are a nice option because they can be directed wherever you want more light. Brooke of Nesting with Grace got the memo and installed three wall lamps showing off a luxe brass finish. The pivoting shade makes it possible to illuminate the shelving, countertop, and sink all at the same time.
Get the look: Serena & Lily Edgehill Sconce, $248
10. Add extra light to a dark kitchen.
Although a dark kitchen in black, gray, or blue is certainly on-trend, it runs the risk of feeling a little too moody. To add more light, make sure to install a few wall sconces. With a clear glass shade, each of the fixtures chosen by Sarah of Room for Tuesday will offer just enough illumination to keep this transitional kitchen from feeling too dark or heavy.