Barnes Family HomeTransitional Kitchen, London
What Houzz contributors are saying:
Check whether you need to update existing wiringUnsure whether your whole house needs rewiring? “If your installations are more than 20 years old, or it looks as if there’s been a lot of DIY work over the years, it’s best to start again,” electrician Benjamin Pratt says. “There are potentially many disasters buried in the walls and under the floors.”Will the house look like a bombsite afterwards? “There are techniques electricians can use that will keep mess to a minimum,” Benjamin says, “but you might need to get in a decorator afterwards.”
In this space by Imperfect Interiors, the design is similar to the last one, but one of the seats has been swapped to the other side. There’s still a perch beneath the window at the back, but the second bench is opposite the window.With this layout, the owners still benefit from a window seat, but from the long pew they can enjoy a view of the garden.
“If you have rear and basement extensions, it might be possible to dig the garden down to basement level, so it becomes more of a light well,” Stephen Fletcher says. “We did this in a project in Chelsea. We painted the walls white to match the inside of the house and installed a cantilevered staircase to the rear, so the space became a continuation of the interior.” Alternatively, Chris suggests, you could have a children’s play area along the back of the house. “That way, the kids could play outdoors, but be seen and supervised [by the adults] in the kitchen.”
Put a roof on itDon’t forget the importance of bringing in light from above when you’re considering how to connect to the outside. A single rooflight would be enough to provide a view of the sky, or you could go for something more extensive, as in this space. A pitched roof of glazing runs from the kitchen out to the dining area, giving the room a fresh, open feel.
House at a GlanceWho lives here? A woman and her two small childrenLocation Barnes, west LondonProperty A three-storey Victorian townhouse Size Five bedrooms and three bathroomsDesigner Beth Dadswell of Imperfect InteriorsBuilder Surrey Hills ConstructionPhotos by Chris SnookThe owner of this beautiful period property had already hired a builder when she brought in Beth Dadswell to design the interior, and an architect had drawn up basic floor plans for the kitchen. “So we pretty much had a blank canvas,” Beth says. “The owner had a brilliant builder and was very open to ideas, so it was a really great job to work on.”The designer was keen to emphasise the elegant features of the property, while also making the home suitable for a young family. Period elements were all restored, radiators were replaced with cast-iron column versions, and the whole house was rewired and replumbed.
Tuck into a cornerA protruding area in this kitchen has been utilised to great effect with banquette seating. Benches run along two walls to create a cosy corner right next to the windows that overlook the garden.Bench seating is ideal in a corner like this, as it makes great use of all the space. It’s OK that the table is shorter than the banquette, as it provides more space for stretching out at the side.Find carpenters and joiners in your area.
Do your research“Start planning your kitchen several months before the builders arrive, so that you have plenty of time to do your research,” says Beth Dadswell. “Kitchens are one of the most expensive rooms in the house to renovate, and the choices of finishes, brands and electrical products are endless – so you will need some time to dedicate to this before work starts.”“To get the best design on a budget, it is necessary to do thorough research on every single item or component,” says Hayley Tarrington-Robson. “Compare prices and, if possible, visit showrooms that showcase the design you like.”Beth agrees, and adds, “Pick up samples, and research the costs, practicalities and lead times of each item.”