Best Joinery Lighting Inspirations

Best Joinery Lighting Inspirations

Details are of utmost importance when it comes to joinery lighting ideas. This article will guide you on what you need to consider to ensure you will get the results you are aiming for.

A Guide to Joinery Lighting

Here are the top areas to consider when choosing or installing joinery lighting:

What you want to emphasize

You might want to highlight the items in your joinery, your joinery itself, or both. You have to consider various light layers if you’re going to emphasize both. This is possible with LED strips, LED strips with spotlights, or LED strips with ceiling downlights.


After deciding on the design of your joinery, the next thing you want is perfect illumination. You’ve likely researched some images online or have lighting design inspirations in mind. You need to keep in mind that it might not be the same as your reference image when picking the location for light installation. 

Options for Attaining Perfect Illumination of Your Joinery Lighting

Here are the best options you have to get this done:

Split lighting

For this joinery lighting idea, you need a single line of strip light from the front to emphasize your shelf’s top and bottom parts. Aside from the shelf, you can also highlight the items displayed and the joinery itself. 

The thickness of your shelf at the back will appear smaller compared to the front where the lights are, which will prevent shadows from forming at the back wall of your joinery.

Backlight up and down with strips

You’ll use two lines of strips to have the up and down washing effect at the back of your joinery. You’ll get the same effects as having recessed LED lights on a floating shelf. However, you’ll get more light wash to the wall of your joiner. 

You have to make sure that your LED profile isn’t in contact with the wall of your joiner. A 5mm to 10mm offset space from your wall can help get a smooth gradient light wash and lessen the harsh light wash in the part you want to illuminate. 

If you’re going to emphasize the items in your joinery, you can include adjustable downlights in front of your joinery or small spotlights on the shelves.

Recessed LED lights on a matte finish wall

One of the effective ways to illuminate your joinery is to make sure that the surface of your wall has a matte finish. You can have LED lights recessed on a floating shelf supported from the sides. 

This option will not emphasize the items. However, you can do something about it by including adjustable downlights in front of your joinery or small spotlights on the shelves to highlight them.

Front lighting down 

You can do front lighting down for your joinery, a standard option for this fixture. The good thing about this is that it is more affordable and easier to install. The only downside is the front part will look bulky. The front will have a thickness of up to 40mm. This option is recommended for libraries and other similar uses.

Front lighting up

This is another standard option, almost the same as the previous option but with the light faced upward. It will also not require a lot in terms of budget and is easy to install. However, it presents a similar challenge as the front lighting down, with a bulky front.

No shadows – front lighting down

Aside from the light washing downward, this option is similar to the front lighting down. It’s also affordable and easy to install, plus the fact that the fixture won’t make any shadows.

Final Tips

Lighting joinery shouldn’t be difficult to install as long as you have the right fixture chosen for the space where you will have it placed and the nearby materials. One of the common flaws many people make, especially when it is their first time doing something like this, is the slightly visible dots on the joinery. 

The problem results from the lack of profile and diffuser when installing the LED strips. To prevent the rough spots from appearing on the sides of your joinery, you can cut either end of the light.

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