When Roz and Neil returned to the Bristol area after some years away, they chose a home with an attractive, open-plan kitchen-dining area. At first glance, the oak kitchen seemed dated, but in reasonable condition. However, the furniture and appliances soon proved more worn than they appeared, and the couple realised they needed complete replacement as a priority. Alongside a total re-fit , which would take in the adjacent utility and boiler rooms, they decided to add a glazed door where the range cooker had originally stood. This would give access to the sitting room next door, improving flow around the living spaces, boosting natural light and highlighting the beautiful, far-reaching views.
Roz and Neil remembered visiting Gardiner Haskins when they lived in the area previously, so armed with style and colour ideas gleaned from magazines and online images, the couple came into our showroom. They had in mind modern, handleless kitchen furniture and solid, high-quality work tops. They soon got chatting with designer Alec Yull,
“We felt comfortable straightaway,” recalls Neil, “Alec quickly understood exactly what we wanted and he guided us really well. We liked the fact that Gardiner Haskins could take care of every aspect from supply to fitting, too. That single point of contact made the whole process much simpler and less stressful for us.”
Roz was looking for flat, wipeable doors, with no dust-traps, and browsing the displays, she picked out Stoneham’s Latitude furniture, which ticked the boxes for smart looks, flexibility and fuss-free maintenance. The tall larder unit, with its easy-to-use, glass-sided drawer storage particularly caught her eye. A bold blue island and seamless glass splashback were brought together with subtle pale grey wall-units, and white-and-grey, marble-look quartz work surfaces, all of which struck the right note too.
After their initial conversation, Alec visited the couple’s home to measure up and understand the space in detail. Discussing the utility room and boiler room, Roz requested a place to wash their dog Lola after muddy walks. Alec came up with the idea of a large, low-level sink and flexible handspray in the boiler room, a practical solution that works perfectly. He proposed refitting both rooms with more affordable cabinetry but the same high-spec work tops as in the kitchen,
“That was a sensible and cost-effective recommendation,” says Roz, “The lovely quartz tops enhance the cupboards, and link nicely to the kitchen.”
Neil’s ‘must-have’ was a wine-fridge, as they had found the small one in their previous home extremely useful. Alec designed a glass-fronted drinks cabinet combining tableware storage with a built-in fridge that holds dozens of bottles in separate temperature zones for reds and whites. Finished in the same deep blue as the island, it acts as a connecting piece between the cooking and dining spaces.
The kitchen’s existing layout had functioned well. The couple’s fridge-freezer was to be incorporated, and the new stacked electric ovens and sink are in similar positions to the original ones. The main oven features a nifty, space-maximising, slide-away door, and sits between a microwave-combi oven above and a warming drawer below. The old kitchen tap was replaced by a handy boiling water tap that is a favourite gadget,
“It’s great, and not just for hot drinks,” says Neil, “It’s so convenient and saves on cooking time, too.”
With the tired range cooker gone, Roz was keen to have an induction hob, and Alec suggested locating it on the island,
“We didn’t want a bulky overhead extractor blocking the view in the middle of the room, though,” says Roz, “Alec solved the problem by showing us the down-draught model which is unintrusive and really effective,”
Neil and Roz’s project involved some disruption, as the new doorway was created, plumbing updated and underfloor heating installed before the kitchen was fitted. It took around six months from initial meetings to completion and the couple have nothing but praise for the professionalism and high-quality work of the Gardiner Haskins fitting team. Now they have had time to enjoy their new kitchen, they are delighted with the difference it has made to everyday life,
“We love being in here now, as it’s such a sociable space, and everything just works,” says Roz,
“We hadn’t had a new kitchen for a long time, and there are so many new products around now, but Alec was so well informed,” adds Neil, “He could see what we were trying to achieve and knew exactly how to get us there.”
Designer: Alec Yull
Kitchen type: Modern
Kitchen Cabinetry: Stoneham Kitchens Latitude Handleless Inscribe
Utility room Cabinetry: Crown Imperial Handleless
Work tops: Carrara Misterio Quartz
All imagery contained in this case study was taken by Colin, PhotoWord.
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Gardiner and Sons Co Ltd registered address Gardiner Haskins, 1 Straight Street, Broad Plain, Bristol, BS2 0FQ, registered in England.
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