July 04, 2017

INTERIORS | Our Renovation - The Kitchen

We moved into our Edwardian house almost four years ago and have slowly worked our way through renovating each room in turn.

The kitchen was pretty much the last room we renovated and it has made such a huge difference. Nearly every surface in this room was a shade of brown, it was so dark and depressing! I don't think it had been decorated for at least 20 years, maybe more.




The kitchen took quite a while to come together. We started at the back of the room, with the utility space and downstairs loo. We extended the loo slightly by moving a wall and changing the position of the door. We inherited the tiled terracotta flooring from the previous owner, but replaced the cracked ones, scrubbed the old varnish off and re-grouted them.

The biggest job was probably renovating the two original sash windows. Although they look fantastic now, I don't think I'd ever want to attempt this again. When we moved in the windows didn't even open, they had been painted over and nailed shut. We spent ages stripping the old paint, sanding the frames, replacing the cracked glass panes, original weights and beading and then repainting them. We spent several weekends over winter working on them, with the freezing wind howling through the kitchen... ugh, never again!

We also sanded the original floorboards in this room. These had been varnished and over the years had darkened down to a orange-brown colour. Sanding them really brightened the room. We also replaced the radiators. We removed the weird fake bricks from around the fireplace and hearth, re-plastered and painted everything white to tie in with the rest of the room. The oak beam is from Celtic Timber and the wall light is BTC.

We painted the walls with Dulux Trade white and the wood panelled wall with Laura Ashley Cotton White eggshell.

We really loved the look of in-frame kitchens from DeVOL and Plain English but our budget didn't stretch that far so we started looking for an alternative. The kitchen is the Harewood Painted by DIY Kitchens, in Mussel. We found them to be more affordable than the mid ranges available in the DIY sheds and they also deliver everything ready assembled instead of flat-pack. The lead-time for delivery was also pretty short. We'd definitely recommend them.

The under stairs cupboard is accessed from the kitchen, so although we wanted to keep this storage space accessible we also needed more worktop space. To combat this, we built our own rolling island. The worktop now extends to an L shape but we can just wheel the whole thing out of the way to get to the cupboard behind. Chris built the frame and slatted shelves, I painted it with a custom Dulux colour to match the cabinets and we added a standard cabinet unit on top before attaching the worktop.

The worktops are solid oak from Worktop Express, the ceramic butler's sink is the classic belfast from Rangemaster and the tap is Bristan. The tiles are Laura Ashley Artisan in white and because they're slightly textured, they reflect the light.

In the alcove next to the window we built a larder cupboard to house all the dry goods. The lower part was already there and we think it is original to the house. We constructed a new frame up to the ceiling and sourced some period doors on eBay (which we stripped, sanded and primed). We painted the frame and doors in a custom Dulux eggshell colour similar to Farrow and Ball Railings. The brass hardware throughout the kitchen was sourced from the company who supply DeVOL.



  1. Just lovely! I'm dreaming of white cupboards and butcher block counters...it all takes time. Congratulations on your great work.

  2. The Harewood is a very good choice :-)


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