Family Kitchen Extension in Herne Hill
Updated: May 9
Planning the Design for a Family Kitchen Extension
Situated in Herne Hill in Southeast London, this classic Victorian Terrace with side return
needed remodelling and enlarging. A new design for this family kitchen extension was required to cater to the needs of this busy family of five.
The children were becoming teenagers, so a reworking of the ground and first floor of the
property was proposed to give the family the space they needed. The owners of this home, an Anglo-French family, enlisted our help with the refurbishment, design and installation of their new kitchen-dining space.
The brief for this kitchen renovation was to create one large space in which to cook, eat, and entertain.
Defining the space and kitchen layout
This client needed help with the planning and design of this kitchen renovation so that not only would it would be optimised for all the activities of a busy family, but that she would
also get the dream kitchen that she wanted.
The existing kitchen looked out onto the side return and was not large enough for a table or even an island. It opened on to the living area and the client wanted this to be separated, and the kitchen relocated to beside the existing dining room.
The dining room was accessed from the kitchen by going out into the hallway and down a corridor to enter the separate, self-contained dining room. By filling in the side return and removing the existing external wall of the dining room we created a new, large, communal family kitchen-dining space.
The brief required:
an island with breakfast bar seating
standalone larder / breakfast prep cupboard
double larder cupboard with pastry shelf
large range cooker
integrated fridge freezer
boiling water tap
to comfortably accommodate a large 6 seater dining table
the design to incorporate their existing furniture
The key words for the style of this kitchen renovation was ‘French Chateau Kitchen’ so this was borne in mind when considering the look and feel. Advising on the space planning and layout of the kitchen was paramount to maximise the natural light, and I also advised on colour scheme, kitchen style, lighting, materials and finishes.
Having had a successful career as an art dealer before having her family, my client has an
appreciation of beautiful objêts. She has collected beautiful things over the years and wanted
them to have a place in her new kitchen.
Lots of minute, detailed planning took place to ensure we could create a decent-sized island
that not only worked ergonomically with the kitchen prep area, but also comfortably fit their 6-seater dining table and majestic dining chairs.
I worked closely with my kitchen supplier on this kitchen renovation to ensure we incorporated all the elements the client desired to create her ultimate dream kitchen.
Bespoke Kitchen Design
The bespoke nature of the service I offer included ensuring specific details the client requested were all incorporated.
One such detail was wide drawers on the dining side of the island to store crockery and cutlery, so the client’s children can set and clear the table without getting in the way of the cook preparing the meal.
To enhance the look and feel of the ‘French Chateau Kitchen’ I had my kitchen suppliers
make a bespoke canopy with decorative supports, to hide the extractor.
To introduce some colour into the kitchen and create a focal point we installed these beautiful tiles from the Fired Earth ‘Acapulco’ range as the splashback behind the range cooker.
These glazed and decorated tiles are inspired by the vivid shades of Mexican interiors and
ceramics. They work beautifully with the client’s own French crockery hanging above the extractor, further enhancing the French Chateau Kitchen feel.
Designing the Kitchen Island
The long island which separates the cooking area from the dining area, houses the integrated dishwasher and bin storage below on the kitchen side, with undermounted sink and Qooker tap above.
On the dining side, we have incorporated pan storage below as well as a wide cutlery
drawer above. We also included some open shelving for cookery books at the end of this run. The open shelving is in oak, which matches all the internal carcasses.
At the kitchen end of the island we created an overhang large enough for two counter stools. With a hidden socket underneath, it’s the perfect place for teenagers to chat to Mum while their phone is charging or they’re on their laptop!
The Details : Elevating a Kitchen from Good to Great
The island, countertop and upstands are in San Vincente Classic Quartz stone.
Fun Fact: Quartz countertops are an environmentally sound choice. 90% of the stone-like
materials that form the base of quartz countertops are all waste by-products of other
quarrying or manufacturing processes. No natural stone is quarried solely for use in quartz
Details are so important in a kitchen, and I believe they make or break the look and style you
want to achieve in your kitchen. So many kitchens are let down by the wrong choice of handles! Equally, you can elevate a not-so-expensive kitchen cabinet with quality handles.
To reinforce the French traditional style of this kitchen we chose a mix of cup handles and
knobs for the cabinets, all in burnished old gold.
Glass-fronted Wall Cabinets
We included a glass-fronted double wall cabinet at the end of the kitchen run to lighten the
view of that wall and lead the eye out to the garden just beyond. It helped that the client had
a lovely collection of antique glass, crockery and silver!
In the dining area we were able to install the client’s beautiful ornate French wall mirrors.
Not only do mirrors reflect light and create the illusion of a larger space, in this kitchen renovation the ornate gold detailing of the client's antique mirrors picked up the old gold finish of the cabinetry handles, as did the gold-framed artwork on the same wall.
The Final Result
Our design resulted in a kitchen renovation that exceeded the client’s desires – beautiful and practical, with plenty of storage within the ergonomic design.
What the client said:
“We have the kitchen of our dreams.
Family life is transformed and it is a place I feel happy to come home to, happy to entertain in, and happy to wake up to, especially at weekends!
Nicola delivered excellent attention to detail, articulate preparation and was proficient in identifying specific client tastes. She worked every angle with a subtle combination of consideration and efficiency.
She knew exactly how to provide quality and every detail was attended to. Her team were on time and her spec was on budget, even managing the challenges of on-site builders with good grace.
I was very impressed and am so proud to live with the results. Thank you Nicola!”
Are You Thinking of Extending or Renovating Your Kitchen and Don’t Know Where to Start?
If you would like my expert help, get in touch and I can work with you to create your
ultimate dream kitchen.