Project House - The Kitchen

August 14, 2017

This post has been a longgg time coming but I finally sat down to go back through all the photos from the last few months, since May, with the kitchen being fitted. The last time I left you with a kitchen update was on this post {with all the painting/floor going down etc}. Since then, we've pretty much finished everything off. So this post is an update of all the finishing bits, starting with the kitchen herself being fitted! 
Last time, the floor was being fitted {full post on our herringbone floor here} and so we were ready for the kitchen to arrive.

It was the morning after we'd got home from Mykonos when the kitchen was due to be fitted. A sunny Sunday I remember well, waking up with butterflies waiting for Ben's Uncle to arrive. Ben's Uncle {Philip Hitchcock Design} makes beautiful bespoke kitchens up in Scotland - even for Duchesses in castles!. You may remember me talking about him with our last house/kitchen? He very kindly agreed to make us another kitchen and this time we promised him that we wouldn't move house ever again! 

We'd kept the island from the last kitchen he made for us but painted it a new colour this time - Farrow & Ball Downpipe {post on painting the island here}

The rest of the kitchen, Philip had designed for us. We had a visit up to Scotland last November where we discussed a lot of it and our likes/dislikes, the space to fit it in etc but a lot of it was left to Philip. He's like an artist rather than a kitchen maker and very much designs everything to look as almost single pieces of furniture rather than anything too built in. He doesn't like wall cabinets {which was fine for us as they'd block our velux light coming from above} so to an extent we put a lot of trust into him for the design. But I will write another blog post on what we've discovered when planning a kitchen design wise and use of space/my must haves etc.

So we'd seen rough sketches from Phil before it arrived but nothing more than that. Cue our excitement and slight unease not knowing 100% what any of it would look like. Phil purposely doesn't send photos whilst in production for he knows that the end result everybody will love and have a surprise. I was a tiny bit nervous but had every faith in Phil. And low and behold, the morning it arrived I was on cloud nine. It was more beautiful than our wildest dreams. The fine details, the brass door furniture he'd distressed for us to make it look antique, the deep cupboards and drawers, the beautiful insides, we fell in love with it all. The units are painted in Farrow & Ball Skimming Stone.

He'd also made us an overhead mantle for above the cooker, which he'd kind of lime washed and picked out some of the details of colour from our units. Which again we'd discussed the mantle design and shape but not the exact finish so we really loved this. It finishes the kitchen off perfectly and gives a focal point above the cooker.

Being large pieces of furniture it doesn't take too much fitting. It was about a day and a half to adjust some little bits, fit the sink/dishwasher/cut the holes for the pipes etc. 

Ben and his Uncle did this together, combining their carpentry skills. So clever.

We used this belfast sink {online here}. 

Eventually, as the tools were shifted out and the sawdust cleaned up, we had a kitchen!! 

Although until the worktops were fitted for the tap to then be fitted and the electrics were connected it wasn't usable. But I spent a long time just dancing around happy that we were on the right track. Did I mention how much we loved the kitchen already?!

This housekeeper's unit and drawers are probably my very favourite thing about it.

Next on the list was worktops. Ben and I had battled over worktops, I wanted quartz everywhere but Ben wanted oak. So we compromised and ordered a piece of oak for the island with an overhang for stools to use it as a breakfast bar.

And then had stone templated for the run of units. Again, I'll talk more about the practicalities of both worktops in my 'What I've learned kitchen designing' post which will be up soon. I've had so many questions about our worktops. So maybe that should be a post in itself?! We used quartz to look like marble {Carrera} as it's hard wearing. We used a local company although I wouldn't recommend them, their aftercare and service was shocking. The worktop we used was from a range called IQuartz I think called San Vincenzo. There are so many worktop choices out there, it's really just a case of choosing one for your budget {they vary so much} and bringing samples home to hold up against your units. The worktop we'd chosen before the kitchen was installed ended up being not right so we changed our mind once the kitchen was fitted. There's almost no point choosing this until your kitchen is fitted as they need it in to come and template before you can order anyway.

Oh! And I haven't talked about choosing an oven yet. Maybe for the other post too? 

We had about a week of waiting for the worktops to be fitted. In this time we couldn't use the sink at all or have the taps fitted or use the over worktop cupboard so we were still cooking at my parent's house!

In this time we tried to finish off some of the other jobs like fitting the pendant lights above the island {online here}

I wrote a post on these lights on the Laura Ashley blog online here.

Gradually, the space was really coming together.

Then it was worktop fitting day! Ben fitted the oak himself, just sanding the edges and finishing with this oil. The worktop fitters fitted the quartz for us and a small upstand at the back.

The worktops transformed the kitchen again. We had to wait a couple of days for the glue/silicone to set so we couldn't put anything on the units yet but I was itching to unpack!

Next was the tiling. 

We used these tiles to make a splash back behind the cooker. We debated using the worktop to make a splashback going up behind but felt it might look a bit too cold/modern for our house? The tiles seem to add a bit more detail.

Finally, it was time to unpack! And fill this cupboard after months of dreaming about having kitchen cupboards again!

We use the housekeeper's cupboard to hide the toaster, microwave, nutribullet and kettle in. With the worktop running all the way to the back it's a worksurface that we can close the door on. It works really well for us and keeps the rest of the kitchen clutter free.

The fun part was opening boxes that we'd packed up six months earlier! I was reunited with all my pots/pans/tupperware/kitchenalia again. And tried to decide what cupboards/drawers I'd use for what. We managed to fit all of our dried kitchen food/tins/baking etc into the drawers below the housekeeper's cupboard and in the shelves above. Leaving the other cupboards and drawers free for pans, cups, glasses, cutlery, crockery etc.

With the kitchen pretty much finished, just adding extra little touches like this shelf above the sink {DIY blog post online here} and unpacking some of the vintage kitchen ware I've collected over the years, we focused on finishing off the rest of the room.

Like making a table and fitting radiators. Full blog posts can be found here on making our table and on heating the extension with cast iron radiators.

Table, DIY here. Chairs online here.

Having the doors wide open and a table to sit at felt SO good. We were almost finished!

I mean, we were still living with tools, but getting there.

Next was finishing off this sofa area. We'd kept our beloved comfy sofa from our last kitchen {online here} which worked perfectly in the space and would look out to the garden through the french doors but still be part of the kitchen.

We fell more and more in love with the space as it became more finished and usable. You can plan things out on a computer or with sketches for hours, you can imagine living there and all of your furniture in place but until you actually put it altogether it's hard to know how it will actually feel. 

Seeing this all come together though was a dream!

We put some artwork up on the walls {full blog post online here}

and fitted a pendant light above the dining table.

and then found the perfect vintage armchairs for the middle of the room. We needed something to fill the space and these antique chairs from Hove fitted the bill. They add a bit more colour/texture whilst being comfy to sit in to look out onto the garden/chat etc without being too big.

Above them we put up a mirror wall - similar to the one we have in our lounge {blog post on that here}. We got most of these from eBay. It was a large, very plain wall to fill but I felt that artwork would have been too messy on it? I was tempted by a big blackboard but it could have been overpowering. The mirrors though reflect the light back in and reflect views of the garden. 

Then we put up a gallery wall above the sofa.

A gallery wall blog post is on my list to write with some tips for the layout etc. Most of these frames and hooks are from Cox & Cox, online here.

Finally, we put up curtains {from Ikea} and the room is pretty much complete! There's a little hallway part which I'm waiting for the photos back from Rock my Style to post on here too.

In fact, I'm waiting for all of Rock my Style's photos to share with you as they'll be a million times better than these quick snaps above from my iPhone!

I hope this was of some use to you? Do let me know your thoughts. And if you've got any specific questions for future blog posts. On my list is the garden/patio area/worktops/designing a kitchen/creating gallery walls. But anything else let me know!

R <3 xx 

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  1. Wonderful post! We've recently got married so a house is very much the next big step. You've given me plenty of inspo, your style is very similar to mine - thank you! Check out my lifestyle blog if you get a chance! - quite new but getting there!

  2. Rebecca! Your kitchen looks so wonderful. I've been following your progress on your blog and instagram for months so it's so amazing to see the final result. I love your colour palette and especially love the floor Ben fitted. I am going to try and fit ours when we come to do it.
    You've given me so much inspiration for my own extension. We have a house similar to your old one and planned a side return extension which the planners just rejected for the second time. So we are going to appeal it! I am itching to get started on the build so it's so frustrating. Oh well! I will jsut have to keep swooning over yours for a little longer. Enjoy your finished home!

  3. Love all the details in your house - this time the mirrors ♥ Alexandra

  4. Which Ikea curtains are they? Love the colour and floatiness.


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