Redesigning The Kitchen – Help!
We moved into our house a year and a half ago and always knew that it would be a ‘project’ to make it into the house that we wanted it to be. We love a project, and so this suited us down to the ground. Our previous house was a similar project and we adored changing it into our first family home. Fast forward to now and we’ve decorated a few rooms and are starting to turn our attention to what will, hopefully, be the biggest project of the house: the kitchen. Yikes!
Our house was built 160 years ago and has been extended, twice, by previous owners. We live in a tiny hamlet by the river Severn, looking out over Wales, and about 9 miles from Bristol, where my husband works. The previous owners had lived here for over thirty years and, although the house has lots of lovely space, the interior was/is (in some places) very tired. We have what I affectionately call ‘The Red Sea’ running through the house, which is a deep, dark red carpet that penetrates the stairs and landings. There’s no hiding from it; vacuuming it is a physical workout in itself and it makes the middle of the house so dark, it’s horrid!
In the office, where I am currently sat, we have a multi-coloured carpet that must’ve been fashionable at one point in time but certainly is a bit of an eye sore now! We’ve got plans for how we will use most of the rooms over the coming years and as our girls grow, but the kitchen is the current project that we are beginning to tackle.
Part of the kitchen is extended and has a flat roof that’s around 15 years old. I know that flat roofs are always a ‘no no’, because of pooling water, and my husband and I knew straight away that we’d want to replace it. We are hoping to replace the roof next year and use lots of glass in it, to let in more light. This is the easy bit (if replacing a roof is ever easy!) but the bit we’re struggling with is the internal layout and plan of the kitchen area itself.
Our sink is in a weird place, at the moment, miles away from the cooker and fridge. Many a time I’ve found myself precariously dashing to the sink with a pan full of boiling pasta and worrying that I’m going to trip over a toy / pet / child – it’s just not ideal – so we know that this has to move. The current worktop is green, the cupboards are orangey-brown and the beige tiles have an occasional pattern of woodland fruits that I *think* my grandparents had in their kitchen circa 1992; it’s quite something.
Dreams and plans
I love the idea of having an island that we can sit at, with a wine rack (obvs) and have always dreamed of a sofa somewhere in the kitchen, for lazy afternoon chats and evening socialising, whilst somebody cooks. These are pretty much my starting points. My husband, ever the practical engineer, is trying to come up with plans as to how we can maximise the space / move the plumbing to accommodate my ideas (dreams) / possibly open up the back wall with bi-fold doors into the garden, whilst still maintaining some practicality of having a downstairs loo and shower room next to his (beloved) garage. Argh – there’s so much to think about!
In our previous house…
…we reconfigured the existing kitchen / diner but now, faced with a big opportunity to create a lovely family kitchen, we are almost over run with ideas and need to start whittling them down.
I guess I’m blogging about this in the hope that someone will have some great tips or ideas about rearranging a kitchen and contact me to help! I find that we are discussing how long we think we’ll live here for and where we want our girls to go to secondary school (the oldest is only 2, ha!) so that we can kind of picture how long we think we’ll live in the kitchen and use the space. There’s a lot to think about!
Saturday evenings are now spent with me watching Strictly (my idea of utter heaven) and him sat next to me with graph paper and a pencil, sketching ideas. I think we’ve truly started the kitchen project and, although we have conversations where we feel we are going round in circles, I am secretly loving it.
I’d love to hear of any ideas that you may have, so please DM me: @mamatribe.natalia and I’ll be sure to update you as we go along.