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Getting started with kitchen planning - any help appreciated!

(16 Posts)
maggiso Mon 28-Sep-15 16:28:42

We have bought a listed house that needs renovation, and have permission (at long last!) to knock the small kitchen and tiny dining room into one, to make a square room with windows on 3 sides .It is not really big enough for a proper island unit, (and we cannot cut the floor for services) but we might get away with a narrow sideboard style return to partially separate the 2 halves of the room, and store plates etc.. We have to keep the existing red/brown quarry tiles in the kitchen side, and there are exposed beams, and several limitations due to beam positions and low heights.
Basically I don't know where to start, despite searching for inspiration, in magazines. We have a builder who will be fitting the kitchen, (he has suggested Howdens) but the design is up to us - and I don't know where to start. The position of the sink is pretty much fixed, but getting a work triangle is just not possible - due to the limited wall surface.
Do you know of anywhere to look for inspiration? I think we will have to go for either a cream/ivory painted or light oak because the quarry tiles are so - well brick red! Are their kitchen designers who are not tied to a company (since we have our builder?)

suzyrut Tue 29-Sep-15 17:14:29

Houzz stood me in good stead when looking at kitchens just for the sheer volume of ideas and articles. I think sometimes it helps to have a clear idea of the kind of thing you love so that you have an end result in mind.

Howdens do a design and planning service which is free so you could take your floor plan to them and see what they come up with?

It is also worth looking up the really good kitchen lessons learnt threads here as they are a gold mine.

PingPongBat Tue 29-Sep-15 17:44:57

I'm kitchen planning too maggiso - so many things to consider, and we've got a small amount of building work too & utility room going in... already losing sleep over it!

Thanks suzyrut for suggesting the lessons learnt threads - I've found this one and this one so far. Going to get a cup of tea glass of wine and sit down for a long read

KP86 Tue 29-Sep-15 17:47:07

No matter how many power points you think you want, add 50% more.

PingPongBat Tue 29-Sep-15 18:41:10

We tried howdens - they came up with a design with no place for a fridge freezer hmm Benchmarx promised us a design over a week ago and haven't sent us anything.

On the other hand, local companies have been responsive, helpful, have good ideas & will fit the kitchen too.

So we're going to have our builder reshape the kitchen & create the utility room, then a local kitchen company to supply & fit both rooms.

maggiso Wed 30-Sep-15 08:58:03

Thank you suzyrat and Pingpong for the lessons learnt threads which I had not seen. Lots of lovely ideas there (still reading it). And thank you KP86 (adds lots of power points top list). I will go back to Howdens and get them to plan and quote - they wanted to wait till the dining room wall was down (which should happen today). I want a classic simple shaker kitchen -perhaps a mix of light wood and pale paint. The red tiled floor is pushing me away from the colours I usually prefer.
You are right Suzyrat - I do feel very intimidated by the blank canvas of not having lived in this kitchen before I have to choose, and then the restrictions of the building (windows positions) which was not built to accommodate a modern fitted style kitchen! The day light in the room will be quite different once the wall is gone, I think I need to see it once the wall is down before I can plan properly.

Butterbean123 Wed 30-Sep-15 16:23:46

I think it will be easier to visualise once the wall is down. Have you considered what appliances you would like in the kitchen and whether these are built in or not? This may well dictate where things need to go...

SliceOfLime Wed 30-Sep-15 20:09:19

My parebts have a lovely pale grey painted shaker style kitchen from Neptune kitchens, they do a quite narrow island / table freestanding thing that isn't fixed to the floor that could work for you to get more work space. My kitchen is Ikea grin I also noticed some nice freestanding kitchen units in M&S and Habitat recently too. I love red quarry tiles and thinking of putting them in our kitchen.

maggiso Thu 01-Oct-15 14:59:53

You are right Butterbean, about appliances. Originally we were planning to keep the elderly Aga (which also heated hot water and the bathroom and cloak radiators)- but it proved to be beyond repair (and dangerous) so my first thought was to replace it with a range cooker- but now (after reading the lessons learnt thread) I wonder if a wall mounted oven (though we have very little full depth full height wall space, due to the windows being so close to corners) with an electric induction hob would be better. (We have an autistic teenager, and I have a bad back). We are thinking of putting in a small wood burner ( to use the Aga chimney, and to have an alternative heat source). We need a dishwasher and a large fridge, oven and hob. We have a separate utility zone- which is another story.
Slice of lime thank you. I have sent for a brochure from Neptune kitchens and John Lewis is our local retailer for their range. Their shaker style kitchen range looks lovely, and grey may work well. In fact now I have started looking I really do know what I want!
I have made the mistake of looking in a very nice kitchen shop with just what I want in the window -so nothing will compare! I want bespoke real wood with marble tops and gorgeous lighting--but I suspect our budget is far less ambitious! I think I have left the kitchen planning till last because it is the harder task. Today I even saw a picture of a air filter that looks like a chandelier!

Butterbean123 Thu 01-Oct-15 16:06:06

At least you have a good starting point now and it definitely seems as if you have a much clearer idea of what you would like within the kitchen and the sort of style. I don't know if you've heard of a company called Naked Kitchens but a friend used them. She said they use real wood & that it's all made to order. Maybe this will help with some of the building restrictions? Oooo, can any of the appliances you mentioned go in the Utility? that could save some room too! How did the wall removal go?!?

maggiso Thu 01-Oct-15 19:09:17

The kitchen wall is still up! But the bathroom wall(above the kitchen) has been moved. I think I misunderstood (too eager) when they said they were starting work on the wall! The buildings inspector (who visited earlier this week) thinks we might need to put in a support beam (upright -it can be reclaimed oak) so the builders are waiting to hear back.
The utility is a small barn off the kitchen, and houses the boiler, back door and both washing and drying machines. There is not room for a 3rd machine (dishwasher) but we are hoping to reuse a couple of old units for wall storage.
Thank you for the Naked kitchens suggestions. I will look into them. I think our budget may need some adjustments! I have a local kitchen planner coming out next week, but having seen the posher kitchens I suspect we may be better to um save up for longer.

Butterbean123 Fri 02-Oct-15 11:20:48

It definitely sounds as if you have a big project at your hands! I would always keep a dishwasher in the kitchen - being a little clumsy I don't think I could get the dishes across that distance!! Best of luck with it all. When you get a floor plan you could always post it on here and see if the MN family can help more on the layout smile

PingPongBat Fri 02-Oct-15 22:56:30

Yes definitely post a plan - I've had some really helpful comments from lovely MNers on this board this week!

RaisingSteam Sat 03-Oct-15 21:11:13

Do put up a plan!

House to Home website is mostly kitchens featured in interiors magazines so they are real homes not showrooms IYSWIM

maggiso Wed 14-Oct-15 18:29:04

Thank you butterbean, ping pong and raisingsteam. I have had a kitchen designer visit from a local firm, and have an appointment with just the plans for another firm. The kitchen designer suggested putting a freezer (or our existing fridge freezer) in the utility and just having a fitted larder fridge in the kitchen under the window. We could do this as old low beams mean everything in there has to be free standing. She also suggested having both a small inbuilt oven and microwave at eye height for every day use (bad back) as well as a separate small range style cooker and hood for a visual focus when cooking for guests ,which is an interesting idea. She felt that bare wood would not work with the tiled floor and the dark oak beams, and mid oak table, so suggested a pale painted wood finish. I love wood but have to agree!
Home to home looks useful. Thank you raising steam. I do still feel very worried I will mess this up and not get the stunning useful kitchen the house deserves. I have also had a shock at the extra cost of all the fitted appliances, (fridge/dishwasher/oven/ microwave etc - I am used to getting things in sales!) so may have to do it in stages!
What colour range cooker would look best? Our dining chairs are a pale oyster colour ( off white but not yellowy cream) and most cream range cookers are proper yellow cream. Would black look best or stainless steel?

Ramona75 Tue 27-Oct-15 12:08:01

This section here is great for kitchen advice and there is a cool PDF planner in the downloads section. Could not have planned my kitchen without it. I know understand what service voids are as well! :-)

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