Shaun Pentecost from Holmewood Interiors explains the process of maximising your space and creating the perfect kitchen that stays within budget.
When you think about it, a large proportion of us inherit our kitchen. We do not design it ourselves. Your kitchen may be part of a new build package, or you will have moved house and had to make the best use of the previous owner’s style. Perhaps the family has expanded or grown up, or your age and ease of mobility have changed and so have some of your requirements too. So, when the opportunity arises to create and build your new kitchen with your own personal ‘must haves’ all included, the many options available can be a little daunting. And this can be especially so when you need to stay within the budget you have set too. So where do you start?
Can we make more space?
The most common question we are asked is can we make more space? Without knocking down walls, or building extensions – both of which we can arrange – our answer has to be no. But we can help you to maximise the space you have to the full and this can make a huge difference.
Managing your budget
Cost always comes first. Most customers will have an amount in mind that they are able to spend. Understanding this gives us a starting point. At Holmewood Interiors we cost each element of your kitchen under five headings; Furniture, Accessories, Work Surfaces, Lighting, and Fittings. Under each heading we then list each individual item you choose, so that you can easily see and understand where your spend is going.
And this works well in so many ways. It enables you to compare different options or companies like for like, should you wish. And you can quickly see the cost impact of each item before deciding the areas to reduce or increase spend. In addition, our team is also able to suggest suitable ‘swaps,’ and potential savings for you, to make the process less stressful.
Regardless of your choice, we pride ourselves on only working with suppliers and products we trust; so those who provide good quality, good service, and fair price options.
Site visits and lots of questions!
Before we start any project, we will visit your home, take pictures of your existing kitchen and ask questions. Lots of questions. We start with simple ones such as: what do you like, or hate, about your existing kitchen? What do you want incorporated into the new kitchen? What do you use your kitchen for – just cooking, or entertaining and working in too, and what aspect of your new kitchen will be most important for you?
This is the discovery part for both parties. Our clients are prompted to think about some aspects that they may not have considered, and we at Holmewood Interiors can start to build a picture of how your kitchen is used and what part it plays in your home.
Making it work for you
Our next step is to make it work for you! We can create just about anything, with our skilled craftsmen able to make bespoke, tailor-made furniture when required too. As one of the busiest rooms in the home, the design and style element is key. We guide our customers through the practicality of a design and the materials used, depending on the level of use your kitchen will get. And we can suggest the best products to match styles and durability. This can include scratch-resistant timber painted doors that often work better for busy families with four-legged friends, rather than the high gloss finishes that can show every smudge.
Or perhaps for the avid cook, a Dekton worktop that is heatproof up to 800 degrees so that hot pans can be placed directly on it; or an oven that is more practical for the connoisseur cook, rather than a statement oven with style gizmos and sleeker looks for an ultra-modern positioning. Other things to consider could be not placing an oven at floor level for infirm or mobility-impaired users and installing pull-out storage drawers, rather than base cupboards, for ease and better accessibility.
What to look out for…
Our most frequent query comes with the fitting of new taps. Remember, the fitting of a new kitchen does not immediately improve water pressure when running a tap, although there is often an assumption that a new tap will resolve this. If the water pressure to your current kitchen tap is poor, without resolving the underlying issue it will not improve. But a careful choice of tap type can sometimes help.
The second biggest surprise is the amount of detailed planning that goes into designing your kitchen. Yes, the worktops and cupboard fronts are obvious, but choices also need to be made on the colour of cabinet carcasses, which handle will complete your look, which worktop design, material and styling to go for, and do you want to personalise a splashback? Do you need a drinks station area? What about the energy efficiency of any white goods and how can you light the area to suit the kitchen’s different uses? The list goes on and creating your best kitchen will take time and planning.
Managing expectations and good communications
At Holmewood Interiors we are proud to be a small, ‘can do’ team of office staff and on-site fitters. And we always try to deliver on time. We are honest, will not overpromise, and the reliability and loyalty given by our staff sets us apart from many others. However, we are dependent on our valued suppliers being able to fulfill their end of the bargain, and on occasions delays can occur. When they do we immediately advise you. Our clients are always kept in the loop, up to date and informed every step of the way.
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