Kitchen's Kitchen

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  • So I'm having my kitchen done and am in early stages of planning.

    Why do I need it done? Because whomever installed it really screwed it up, it looks good but there are major issues:

    • Boiler filter is inaccessible and was set at the same height as the worktop with the worktop cut closely around it. Meaning it cannot be serviced (and hasn't been for at least 7 years) and the hot taps now output cloudy water and occasional sludge and particles... meaning the boiler itself is going to need replacing soon and is already costing £1k per year in ad-hoc servicing.
    • Electrics have been wired badly with sockets branching off of other sockets, the circuit overloaded, the consumer unit incorrectly wired (unsafe, fire risk, lights and sockets on mixed circuits!?)
    • Access to sockets is bad, they exist behind units and some cannot be accessed at all and others are in dangerous places (there is a socket unit the sink trap). If a fuse in the fridge went, I'd have to rip out some cabinets to replace it.

    On top of that, the white goods were all the cheapest available and the fridge leaks so regularly that it's just part of living there to clean it frequently (fortnightly is minimum). The washing machine is not performing well and stinks... likely the waste pipe isn't actually a straight descending line, it probably sags and it full of gunk.

    Oh, and the wooden worktop was not maintained by prior owners and has areas of mould and wear that I'm not sure would be considered hygienic.

    So... to fix the boiler the worktop must go and the cabinets in that area must be ripped out (cheap Ikea ones, which appear to have been heavily glued into place)... to fix the electric all cabinets must be removed and new electrics installed which means a path back to the consumer unit being cleared... and to fix the white good issues most of them need replacing.

    This is a new kitchen then, and my current plan is this:

    • Traditional shaker wooden cabinets
    • A dark granite worktop
    • An off-white wall
    • Some earthy or dark coloured tiled floor
    • Some high quality white goods
    • A nice kitchen table and chairs

    This kitchen is 3m by 6m, it's a decent space.

    The budget? Unsure... if I can safely spread the cost I can go higher but I'll be attempting to balance quality with value as I can't go crazy as I'm single income even though I am paid well.

    I have a kind of idea for the kitchen, the theme being British Northern forests in the Spring... hence earthy flooring, light green cabinets, some dark woods (table, some cabinet details), and the dark worktop (stone and dark areas that you find in the forests in Wales, or the dark stones of the Peak District or Yorkshire dales - slightly volcanic in look).

    I'm opting for a modern Shaker style as I think that these are the most honest about their function, and additionally choosing that all appliances will be freestanding and not integrated as I think it should be obvious that a dishwasher is a dishwasher and isn't pretending to be a cabinet.

    Of course I have a Pinterest board to help shape ideas:­817/kitchen/

    And the schedule for all of this? Before Winter sets in as I'd like the boiler replaced before then.

  • Oh, and the space today is all white... it has 3 large windows and a skylight... it is blindingly bright in there and feels inhospitable due to how bright it is.

    The darker worktop and tones are intended to make the room less bright so that it feels more comfortable, welcome and liveable.

  • Oh I love a good kitchen design and build.

    You haven't talked about cooking, what are you thinking? Free standing or built in? Are you gas or electric? We have just switched from a dual fuel range to electric only with induction hob, and much prefer it.

  • I'm thinking a high quality electric oven, and a high quality induction hob.

    I've done a Miele visit, but frankly if I cannot get the price down I'll have to look at something else - comfortable spending the money but I need to feel the value is there. I was very impressed by the demonstration of the induction hob, and I understand that these really shine if good pans are used so things like pans are part of my overall plan for the kitchen.

  • Why wouldn’t you have built in white goods if you’re having a super nice kitchen? That just doesn’t compute.

  • We are really impressed with the neff stuff. Slide and hide oven with steam and sous vide capability, their induction hobs are great too, powermove where the front is hot, middle is lower and the rear is cool is really great (and you can set the heats for each section)

    We used these people for cabinets in our bootroom, their kitchen stuff looks great too, though we had Leicht cabinets in our kitchen.

    Dekton is a pretty awesome work surface - stain proof, heat proof (up to 250C) and very scratch resistant.

    When we designed our kitchen we knew exactly what each cupboard or drawer would contain, it was planned out and mentally walked through to a ridiculous extent but it’s meant we have so far experienced no regrets or desire to change any of it

  • We Used These (I think will double check)­k/html/howto.html

    Very Good Quality very cheap, 4 years later one slightly sticking door under the sink.

  • If I were a single man, I'd be doing that 100%

  • high quality induction hob

    I don't have much to add on the rest but induction has changed my life. I HATE cooking on electric and I HATE cleaning a gas oven and induction has just fixed both things. Clean the cooker every day! Wipe it clean! Goddamn it is BRILLIANT

  • Yeah induction 4 life

  • We're planning on a stainless countertop. We've been without a kitchen for a year now and have just used an ex restaurant steel counter/table thing it's been brilliant.

  • Why wouldn’t you have built in white goods if you’re having a super nice kitchen? That just doesn’t compute

    I am a function over form person.

    Besides... built-in appliances come with minor compromises I don't see the point in accepting. Like smaller capacity washing machines and fridges as they need to accommodate reduced depth.

    I also think there is a lot of beauty in something being seen to be what it is. i.e. exposed infrastructure within architecture showing the skeleton of the building, or exposed ceilings in cafe's etc showing how the ducting and air works. I think that when you show things for what they are that they also have to be higher quality to withstand being visible like that.

    This will be expressed as: visible boiler, white goods being visible, all cupboards being fairly basic cupboards, etc.

    But this also means stepping up the quality of those things as the magic of it all goes away and the quality has to stand alone.

  • I don't have much to add on the rest but induction has changed my life. I HATE cooking on electric and I HATE cleaning a gas oven and induction has just fixed both things. Clean the cooker every day! Wipe it clean! Goddamn it is BRILLIANT

    The demo for induction blew me away.

    On a Miele induction hob, cold water to boiling in about a minute with the simplest cleaning because the surface was still cool.

    Even the immediate grades of power change was impressive to behold.

    And my concern about induction was that it was noisy... but apparently this is more a property of the pans than the hob, and the secret is very high quality pans. The Miele with some Fissler pans was totally silent.

  • Can you cook a stir-fry though?

    Induction & a fuck off wok burner is my dream hob.

    edit, looks like AEG do these, quite reasonable actually

  • I get the non-built-in appliances reasoning, but boilers are never designed to be be on show, choosing one with that in mind seems like the wrong criterium to be considering.

    As you've found, access for servicing must be easy and practical, but a bare boiler on a kitchen wall will always look shit. Just have neat matching cabinetry for it.

  • $$$

    Cheap flat-bottom thin steel wok works well on our induction hob. Cast iron would probably be even better but I'm used to thin steel. Incidentally, how does one flick the contents of a heavy cast iron wok?

  • The vision/mood board I'm working to...

    Earthy floor, sage green cabinets, cream walls, dark worktop.

    Appliances will be in stainless steel front where possible and so they'll still blend in well as the contrast to the cabinets will not be huge.

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  • These are the before photos... they represent what the kitchen looked like about 7 years ago, long before we moved in. Note that the dresser is not there, and we have a shit old B&Q fold-away table.

    Also since then, the wood has been neglected, and white goods slowly failing. This kitchen is an Ikea one with some relatively cheap encaustic tiles. It is far too white, reflective, well-lit... it hurts the eyes to be in the room for too long.

    3 Attachments

    • 2018-10-13 - Kitchen.jpg
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  • Plan is to keep similar layout... but place an oven below the hob, and have no double height units so that the worktop continues all the way around. Only the fridge will be double-height.

  • Those photos look nice... but I assure you they hide the flaws of a self-fitted Ikea kitchen... mostly the boiler issues and electrics.

    And like most... once white goods are hidden, lower quality tends to be installed. In our case, the absolute lowest quality was selected for anything hidden in a cabinet.

    The only potentially salvageable parts are the Neff hob and hood, and the floor tiles. But even the floors tiles have issues as they installed the tiles after installing the cabinets! So they are cut around these cabinets and it is likely that I am doing the floor too.

  • Got to agree with this. One of the main reasons for getting an expensive kitchen is it's all cohesive. Having random appliances makes them look like afterthoughts, whatever you do with a washing machine or a fridge freezer it isn't going to look pretty.

    Even more so in a traditional shaker style kitchen that you seem to be going for. Appliances will stick out like a sore thumb.

  • Semi-agree.

    I can make nearly all of it look good immediately... just buy everything from a single vendor and make it high priced.

    But the washing machine is the hard one. They're just not attractive and tend to come in white and not stainless steel.

    The kitchen isn't huge, and visible appliances may mean it looks smaller and cluttered. I've not seen a great example of a shaker kitchen with visible appliances, but that doesn't mean that they're a bad idea.

    I'm mostly sure that future me would prefer to be able to trivially replace things, and to keep cabinetry really simple and timeless.

    It's only the washing machine that I hesitate on.

  • Washing machine has no place in a kitchen.

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Kitchen's Kitchen

Posted by Avatar for Velocio @Velocio