Mrs Tiger – Kitchen Project

Small kitchens often prove to be an interesting challenge for our designers, squeezing everything a modern kitchen needs into such a small space is not an easy job! We feel this kitchen shows what is possible when you think carefully about the design. Here is what our customer had to say about their kitchen project:

“My house is a one-bedroom semi built in 1989 – when small “starter homes” were quite the thing. They don’t seem to build them anymore and most of them are now rented out.  I am quite unusual in owning mine and as I don’t expect to move for a few years I wanted to replace the original kitchen with something that I would really like, rather than something that would ok and make it easier to sell the house in future.

Not being particularly affluent I started shopping around for kitchens and found that most of the designers who came in were rather stumped by how to upgrade the kitchen. My primary goal was to increase both the cupboard space and work surfaces. Most could offer me more or less the same layout with full depth work surfaces and would emphasise how cheaply they could do it but didn’t seem to be able to understand that I was actually willing to spend a little more to get what I really wanted.  I reconsidered my budget and decided to try Cambridge Kitchens and Bathrooms who I knew had a good reputation but I knew that they were a tier up the market from the other contractors that I had tried.

When Erika visited me to look at the kitchen I carefully warned her about the small size. I had the impression from some designers that the tiny area meant that they viewed the job as more trouble than it was worth – the effort required to achieve a workable design would not result in a substantial order and I felt that some of their efforts were rather half-hearted. Erika was different – she was immediately enthusiastic, taking it as a personal challenge and a few weeks later she had no less than three potential designs for me to look at! One of the key aspects to the design was to have composite granite work surfaces with an inset sink so that rather than having a dedicated drainer (which I seldom use) I would have additional work surface, albeit with grooves so that it would double as a drainer when required. This option, while increasing the cost transformed the way that the kitchen would look and function.  I also replaced my cooker with a built in oven and hob, the microwave will be built in and I also replaced the dishwasher.

I think that overall I had to add an extra 25% onto my original budget but to get the functionality that I wanted – plus of course the composite granite surfaces look fantastic – it was all money well spent. I was never put under any pressure to make a quick decision and there was all the time I needed to make sure that the design was absolutely right.

When it came to the fitting everything went amazingly smoothly. Graham, the fitter was brilliant – cheerful, highly competent and very hard working. I couldn’t have wished for anyone better to be working in my house. Everyone I dealt with at every stage has been wonderfully helpful throughout.  The microwave has been delayed and is on a back order but everything else was completed perfectly on schedule and I am thrilled with the results.”