Taking kitchens to grand new heights
THIS kitchen sits at the top of a tall Victorian town house – on the fourth floor. We made use of the attic space to provide a mezzanine and the dramatic double drop you can see in the photograph.
The clients like living in an "upside down" house; for one thing the higher you climb the more the views improve, while the piece de resistance is a tiny roof garden peeping through the slot window.
A feasibility study and appraisal confirmed that it was best for the kitchen to remain on the fourth floor, since we could introduce light and space here, with a high ceiling and an incredibly large roof light.
The glass for the roof light had to be craned in – no mean feat in the middle of the city among a tight terraced row.
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Being leading chocolatiers, our clients are incredibly passionate about food and cooking at home, so the kitchen has to be family-friendly and open-plan. They entertain regularly and, although they have a professional manufacturing kitchen elsewhere, they still like to experiment with chocolate at home, so this room is the central hub of the house.
Like in an industrial kitchen, the family wants items displayed on shelves instead of in wall-hung cupboards. Everything needs to be visually accessible as well as within easy reach.
The vibrant colours of fruit, vegetables and exotic food labels draw the eye; the emphasis is on the experience of delighting in food and the plain background keeps this in focus. Although eclectic, the mix of dishes and stacked plates alongside food and packages with interesting labels creates the perfect environment for "foodies". Yet it's not a formal show kitchen, but a comfortable place that is at ease with itself and the process of making delicious things to eat.
Eschewing top-brand units and with an eye on the budget, we used Ikea's plain white base units and sourced reclaimed marble pieces from the exterior of an old bank to create a beautiful worktop.
This is also an essential cold surface for baking, working dough and chocolate-making as well as a lustrous material.
Industrial brackets are attached to the mullions as proper supports above the work surface, while a piece of tempered glass provides a floating shelf for crockery without spoiling the window line.
The blue and white theme keeps the kitchen simple yet striking. We used Farrow & Ball's Hague Blue to pick-out the architectural details, and a soft white for the walls. This combination allows the multi-coloured foodstuff and hues within packaging to create drama that's almost good enough to eat.
Goodchild Interiors offers two-hour design consultancies in your home for a fixed fee. Expect exhausting deluges of design information for the discerning. Contact Gill on 0117 927 9475 or email firstname.lastname@example.org