Kitchen Dreaming (Part Three)

Home Heart Harmony Kitchen Dreaming (Part Three)We have made it to the Easter weekend! Yay! The children and I were crawling to the finish line on our knees I can tell you. Our whole upper level looks like a whirlwind has ripped through it as work has commenced in our daughter’s room. Every spare minute has been spent in there but we’ve also had a couple of family birthday celebrations, swimming galas, dance shows and the usual end of term frenzy as well as a nice throat infection (mine) so it’s been rather chaotic. We are really looking forward to spending some quiet family time together over the next few days before things kick into full-scale crazy as we attempt to get the bedroom finished and clear out the kitchen before work commences in a few weeks.

Since my last kitchen post, things have leapt forward with our kitchen update and we are so excited to have actually made some decisions! I cannot tell you how hard it was to decide in the end! It’s almost too much to tell you about in one single post so please bear with me if this becomes lengthy.  I have literally had sleepless nights over these decisions! (Pathetic, I know!) Anyway, here are the developments to date:

Cabinets/Units

The kitchen has been ordered!! SO. EXCITING. We had quotes from a few different suppliers and are really pleased that we were able to ‘shop local’ and go with a kitchen supplier just along the road. They are an independent local company and we expected their price to be significantly more than the other, national chains we had asked to quote. However, when everything came through, their price was really competitive and we definitely felt more comfortable that their representative knew what he was talking about, could adapt as required and provide us with ideas and suggestions that the other companies couldn’t. Also, and most importantly for us, they were able to be much more flexible with their design – offering a much wider variety of cabinet sizes, colours and designs which meant we were able to maximise every inch of the space available to us and not have to compromise because of a lack of options.

Home Heart Harmony Kitchen Dreaming (Part Three)So, the above picture is the actual kitchen we have ordered but, it is shown in grey rather than ‘porcelain’ which is the slightly off-white colour we have chosen. Deciding on the cabinet style was not too difficult once we had settled on a painted solid-wood shaker style kitchen. We had a pretty clear idea of what we wanted, however we went backwards and forwards DOZENS of times on the colour. We originally opted for white, then we saw an amazing white quartz worktop and we changed our minds and decided to have grey cabinets with white counter-tops. However, I wasn’t ever really 100% convinced. My main complaint about our current kitchen is that it’s quite dark and a bit drab (despite being a very bright, south-facing room.) I really wanted to get away from that with our new kitchen and when I looked online, the grey kitchens looked like this:

Home Heart Harmony Kitchen Dreaming (Part Three)whilst the white kitchens looked like this:

Home Heart Harmony Kitchen Dreaming (Part Three)See what I mean? Whilst I adore grey, the drabness of it concerned me while the light, brightness of the white kitchens won me over. Having made the decision to go white, I feel so much happier.

Work surface

This was again, a painful decision. We were spoilt for choice and I actually love so many of the options available, it’s been almost impossible to settle on one. (In fact, that was part of the reason I originally dreamed of an island – so that we could combine two types of work surface!)

I do really love the look of black granite with white units and our first thought was to go dark but it’s a very stark contrast and I’m so inspired to keep the area light and bright, when it came to the crunch, I wasn’t sure that the black fit with my vision for the space.

We have also discussed having wooden counter-tops. I think the look would fit really well with what we like and in fact, we chose these for the kitchen we fitted in our last home. However, whilst I’m sure things have moved on since then, the maintenance and upkeep of the wood was rather tiresome. We had to oil them regularly and I was constantly worried about them getting wet (which would warp the wood).

With all this in mind, we ultimately decided on silestone for our counter-tops which is quartz with an added anti-bacterial protection. It’s scratch and impact resistance is better than any other counter-top material and it has a 25 year guarantee. It also comes in a very large range of colours which gave us options! (Possibly too many!)

We were leaning towards either a pale grey or a white with marbled grey. We had narrowed it down to these three before visiting the supplier last week but when we saw them up close and personal, we discounted the last one as it was too dark.

Silestone 'Alumino Nube'

Silestone ‘Alumino Nube’ [Image Source unknown but please tell me if you know where this is from!]

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Silestone ‘Lagoon’ [Image Source]

Silestone 'Kensho'

Silestone ‘Kensho’ [Image Source]

The first one came out the favourite but I decided to get hold of one of the cabinet doors from our kitchen supplier (another benefit of shopping local!) and take it to the stone supplier to see it alongside the last two options we were considering. I’m so glad I did this as it really reinforced our decision. We were able to see the two options on a larger scale (the tile samples really do look very different to the real thing and I would definitely recommend visiting your stone supplier and seeing everything on a larger scale).

The actual cabinet door with a slab of Silestone in 'Alumino Nube'

The actual cabinet door with a slab of Silestone in ‘Alumino Nube’

Having chatted with the owners of the business and taken the whole family along to pitch in with their thoughts, we have decided on the ‘Alumino Nube’ silestone which is a pale grey counter top with a ‘glassy,’ slightly sparkly finish and we are hoping and praying it will give us the look we’re after!

Range

Home Heart Harmony Kitchen Dreaming (Part Three)After much research and consideration, we have decided to go with the Rangemaster Nexus 110 dual fuel range. Hubby has been the driver of this decision as he is the ‘head chef’ around here. I can’t wait to see what he manages to rustle up in it when we are finally finished!!

Flooring

We have also been busy researching flooring options. I was initially planning on laminate floors but hubby is not keen after our dishwasher flooded our breakfast room a few years ago and destroyed all our laminate floors (leading to weeks and weeks of noisy fans and de-humidifiers drying out the floor before we could replace it). We had also decided to avoid real wood for the same reason. He suggested tile but we currently have tiles and I find them so cold underfoot, I really wanted to go with something different. When we spoke to our kitchen supplier, he recommended Karndean which is a new type of vinyl flooring designed to look exactly like wood, stone or tile but without any of the drawbacks of those materials. (ie. it’s water resistant, warm underfoot and requires minimal maintenance.)

Home Heart Harmony Kitchen Dreaming (Part Three)I think we will go with the original plan of a darker wood effect so that the dirt and (most importantly,) dog hair, don’t show up too much! Watch this space for the decision on that one!

Hardware

With regard to the gold handles I mentioned in my previous post, I think I am going to have to concede defeat. My husband objected to the idea of gold hardware from day one but I was hoping to sell him on the idea. His main objection was that the gold would scratch over time and expose the silver metal underneath, which would show up more than they would on a silver handle. I wasn’t so bothered about scratched handles and felt that I could touch up any imperfections with a bit of gold rub ‘n’ buff. So, we agreed that I would order the one of the gold handles I had sourced and discuss further when we could see what they really looked like. Well, fate was not on my side. The handle I ordered arrived with a seriously bad scratch on it!

This was a blow beyond recovery to my hopes for the gold! I had to concede that it would not look great for all the handles in our kitchen to be damaged to this extent and, since the silver handles we had been shown by our kitchen supplier were so gorgeous, I decided it wasn’t too much of a hardship to go with those! The picture below shows similar:

Home Heart Harmony Kitchen Dreaming (Part Three)

Lighting

We are still discussing lighting options. I have covered our preferences previously in this post. I am really hoping to get a couple of pendant lights to hang over the breakfast bar but we already have recessed lights in that area which would have to be removed to make way for the pendants. Hubby is a little concerned that filling in the holes where the current lights are may look scruffy but we are going to give it further thought.

Tiles

We still have to make some decisions in this area. Now that we have finally decided on worktops, I think we are a step closer but we need to find some time to do a bit of browsing (and time appears to be in very short supply at the moment with everything else we have going on!) It’s next on the list though! I love the tiles in this picture but I’d ideally like something a little bit bluer and softer:

Home Heart Harmony Kitchen Dreaming (Part Three)

[Image source]

Paint

Again, now that we have a decision on cabinets and work surfaces, I think we can start to think about paint colours. I think I know what would look good, but finding that exact right shade is always a challenge in my experience (especially when you don’t want to pay the hefty price tag of some of the more expensive paint brands!)

I think that’s where we’re at with the kitchen as of today. Fitting commences on 14th April. We still need to decide on tiles and paint colour as well as make a final decision on the flooring and lighting along with sourcing a dresser for the end of the breakfast room. So, plenty of decisions to keep me awake at night! Is anyone else planning a kitchen re-model? Have you recently completed one? I’d love to hear about it and all tips and advice are gratefully received!

Have a fantastic Easter weekend lovelies. Blessings from our family to yours xx

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