When hanging a light over a table or a kitchen island 28 to 34 inches is the recommended distance from the bottom of the light to the surface of the table or island. However the size of the light makes a difference. In general a smaller light can be moved lower and a larger light can be moved higher.
Wall washers either installed on the wall or aimed down from the ceiling are used mostly to highlight decorative features such as an art piece or a textured finish like a brick wall. However the psychological effect created by lighting the walls can make the whole room feel much brighter.
If your cabinets don't go to the ceiling consider adding lights above the cabinets. Using a more powerful light source such as a T5 fluorescent increases the reflectivity of the ceiling thereby increasing the light in the room. While increasing light levels is important it is equally important to minimize glare. Use matte finishes to reduce light flares and glare.
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