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Creating a Transitional Kitchen with Solid Oak Cabinets

Posted by admin on April 30, 2018 at 11:00 am. Filed under: General

You may have never heard of this term before, but it is likely that you – or someone you know – have a kitchen in this style. A transitional kitchen does not stick rigidly to one inspiration or theme; instead, it calls upon a range of influences. A blend of older features and contemporary pieces will ensure this kitchen style is timeless and stays fresh and crisp.

Mixing Materials

If you wish to create a transitional kitchen, one of the first elements to consider is whether you are going to mix materials. Often, wood, steel, glass and stone/marble can be featured together without the overall effect appearing cluttered or overwhelming. You probably have a range of materials in your kitchen already and, if not, you can easily have one by shopping with Solid Wood Kitchen Cabinets. For example, you could mix our solid oak cabinets with stainless-steel appliances, glass cabinet frontals and our striking White Quartz laminate worktop. That is exactly what one customer did, and now has the beautiful kitchen shown here.

Add Texture

Another hallmark of a kitchen like this is texture, which you can add in a number of ways. A common focus is flooring, with materials such as antique stone being able to complement new work surfaces and influences. Alternatively, tiling will add texture if you cannot stretch to a stone flag floor. In this kitchen, the rustic splashback tiles mirror the exposed, rough brick of the rear wall. Both these elements work well with the solid oak worktop, overmounted ceramic sink and pale blue cabinetry.

Neutral Palette

Due to the mix of materials and textures, a transitional kitchen may benefit from being kept to muted tones. This will prevent the different aspects clashing or looking overly busy. A neutral scheme will let you appreciate the kitchen or, in the case of the cook space here, the stunning views of the Shropshire countryside. The large windows and impressive skylight maximise the light and airiness of the space, creating a homely welcome and an inviting area to spend time. Read our blog about the best colour shades for a neutral kitchen here.

Low Profile Cabinetry

Keeping your cabinets neutral can allow the other aspects of your kitchen to take centre stage. This particular cooking zone is full of transitional details, including the sleek double fridge-freezer and ornate splashback and cabinet surrounds. The island uses a completely different worktop to the rest of the space to differentiate it and allow it to stand out, while the blue paint immediately catches your attention.

Old and New

A main feature of a transitional kitchen is to mix contemporary and modern features. On first glance, this cooking space looks very traditional, with a ceramic Belfast sink, the glorious range oven and the classic combination of white cabinetry and oak worktops. But this kitchen contains a wall-mounted flat screen television and a gloss black dishwasher. Out of shot, it also includes a massive American-style fridge-freezer and the island features a dedicated wine fridge. This kitchen will look equally stylish now as in two decades, which is an indication that it is transitional and well executed.

This kitchen style is not overly concerned with period correctness or matching items – if you like an item and it fits your lifestyle, include it. Do you have a transitional kitchen? We would love to see it on our Facebook or Twitter pages.


The Best Sinks for Modern Kitchens

Posted by admin on April 27, 2018 at 11:01 am. Filed under: General

They are often only used for menial tasks like washing up, but sinks are a very important aspect of your kitchen landscape. Different sinks suit different kitchen styles, so in this blog we have picked out the best sinks for a modern setting.

Rangemaster Glendale Sink – Single Bowl (Reversible)

If you only have a shoestring budget to create your dream modern kitchen, this stainless steel Rangemaster sink is perfect. Costing just £90, its pared-back design offers a crisp style without compromising on functionality. This sink is reversible, meaning it can be placed so the drainer is either on the left-hand or right-hand-side. Choose a tap similar to our WEX Delta tap to complement the sink with a modern aesthetic.

WEX Zero Large Single Bowl

The industrial look of this WEX Zero large single bowl makes it one of the best sinks for an up-to-date kitchen theme. This item’s straight edges make it incredibly practical for washing large pans and many other uses. Create a flush appearance with this undermounted sink, which sits under the top of the work surface. The price is very reasonable at £200, especially as this sink is just £5 more than a similar model with a smaller bowl.

Rangemaster Arlington Sink – 1.5 Bowl

Pick a more opulent sink with this Rangemaster Arlington 1.5 Bowl model, which will provide a great finishing touch to a luxurious kitchen. The brushed stainless-steel drainer has a minimalist appearance, but the space and the two bowls mean it is incredibly practical. Available with the drainer on the right-hand side (shown in this picture) or on the left-hand side, this eye-catching and elegant sink is one of our most expensive, at £325.

Although we have highlighted three of the best sinks for a modern kitchen, our range encompasses a wide range of styles. See our complete selection of sinks here, or read our guide to choosing sinks for oak kitchens. You can keep up to date with our latest news, products, offers and blogs by following us on Facebook and Twitter.


Three Shades for a Neutral Kitchen Colour Scheme

Posted by admin on April 23, 2018 at 2:59 pm. Filed under: General

If you are upgrading your kitchen, you will have toyed with whether you should choose a minimalist style or opt for bolder shades. A neutral kitchen may be considered slightly conservative, but it will look incredibly smart if done correctly. Picking a muted palette offers another benefit – a timeless appeal that will not need to be changed frequently.

Personality can be injected into a restrained design style by picking a suitable colour scheme. Many grey and off-white shades are on trend at the moment, as they offer more warmth and contrast than choosing a clinical-looking pure white colour. We have selected a handful of our favourite colour pairings for a neutral kitchen.


Wimborne White – An ageless white colour that is an excellent base to showcase your personality


Elephant’s Breath – Timeless, crisp and versatile; this colour is a Farrow & Ball classic

Farrow and Ball

Downpipe – A lead colour that looks striking on kitchen cabinets or walls

Neutral colours such as Wimborne White, Elephant’s Breath and Downpipe can permit brighter touches in your kitchen. They can allow you to personalise your space with coloured accessories or appliances, while still retaining a sophisticated base. And, whilst often thought of as classic colours, neutral shades can be used to create both modern and traditional schemes.

These three colours can combine to make an excellent neutral kitchen colour scheme. They work well together if you want to vary the colours of the room in a beautiful yet largely subtle way. Applying these shades to your walls, cabinets or flooring sets the tone for the rest of the space, meaning you can furnish with complementary accessories or inject a dash of bright colour.

Would you choose one of these shades for your neutral kitchen upgrade? Let us know in the comments below. If you have chosen one of these colours for your kitchen, we would love to see it on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.


What is Maximalism and Will It Work in your Kitchen?

Posted by admin on April 20, 2018 at 11:24 am. Filed under: General

Minimalist style has dominated the last few years, in everything from timeless white-on-white kitchens to the sleek aesthetic of Apple’s phones and tablets. The response to this pared back school of thought is maximalism, where bright colours and striking patterns are chosen to make a room as eye-catching as possible.

If you like sets of matching furniture, maximalism may not be for you. The concept is often characterised by items that are deliberately chosen for their individuality. Avoid a messy and uncoordinated look by ensuring there is a connection between some of the pieces. This connection could be a colour scheme, pattern, texture or fabric.

A vibrant kitchen with bright coloured chairs and accessories
A solid wood kitchen with mis-matched worktops and a blue island

Maximalism also centres around items you love. Displaying curios and decorative pieces is a fantastic way to show your personality, making the kitchen unique to your own tastes. Build your collection of items over time, as this style works excellently if you are constantly adding items to it. Shelving or other storage can be used to curate your items without them being obstructive.

Start with a large area of the room, such as a wall or the floor. Kicking off your maximalist design like this will coordinate the look you want to achieve and prevent the room seeming muddled and chaotic. Different objects can then be introduced, such as mis-matched kitchen chairs or influences from across the globe.

A mostly white kitchen with many neutral coloured accessories
An oak bookshelf with books laid out haphazardly. There is a chalkboard and wooden stool in the background

It is very easy to incorporate this style to your kitchen. Consider mixing and matching your work surfaces using our solid wood and laminate worktops, especially if you have a kitchen island. Alternatively, you could paint a feature wall or use one of our many splashbacks to provide extra patterns or colour to your cook space. A kitchen is a superb place to apply this decor, as the vibrancy of varying shades and textures complements rich, flavourful food.

How would you apply maximalism to your kitchen? Let us know below, or on our Facebook or Twitter pages.


Choosing Kitchen Lighting: How to Find the Right Light for Your Cook Space

Posted by admin on April 17, 2018 at 4:33 pm. Filed under: General

Lighting is an incredibly important aspect to consider when you are upgrading your kitchen. It is surprising how choosing kitchen lighting can affect the feel of your kitchen, as different levels can change the atmosphere and usability. Correctly illuminating your kitchen is imperative for practical reasons, such as having a space bright enough to safely prepare food. We have picked out a few options to help you find the right one for your cooking area.

Pendant Lamps

Classic pendant lamps add personality and a homely welcome to kitchens. These fixtures will bathe the room in a warm glow making them perfect for smaller spaces. In a larger kitchen, combine with spotlights or task lights to create individual ‘zones’ for food preparation, eating or entertaining.

Spotlights and Task Lights

Spotlights present a minimalistic and sleek look, and are equally at home in both modern and traditional settings. On top of aesthetic appeal, they are also incredibly useful for lighting up specific areas of your kitchen, making them great for high-use areas. Spotlights and task lights do not have to be mounted in the ceiling – consider utilising the underside of your cabinets or your extractor hood. Placing the lights in these locations can improve the brightness and usability of your spaces.

Multi Direction

When choosing kitchen lighting, multi-directional fittings are a halfway house between pendants and spotlights. These lamps offer the ability to illuminate different areas of your kitchen while only having one fixing point in the ceiling. They are more affordable than spotlights but will still substantially brighten your kitchen. In the kitchen shown here, the stainless-steel lamps match the appliances, which reflect the light back into the room.


For a more opulent method of lighting up your room, nothing competes with a chandelier. Whilst it may not be the most energy-efficient way to brighten your kitchen, a candelabra is incredibly elegant and will evenly cast light across the room. To prevent your kitchen feeling small and cramped, it needs to be large enough to comfortably accommodate this feature.

This particular kitchen has a traditional feel, and the combination of cream cabinetry and green paint offers a country theme. If you love hosting special occasions or have an abundant source of natural light, a chandelier is the perfect choice.

A traditional oak kitchen with plinth lighting

Credit : Love Lights

Plinth Lighting

Have you considered installing bulbs underneath your base cabinets? Plinth lighting is a unique way to add gleaming shine to your kitchen, instilling an elegant yet relaxed feel. This type of illumination can make your kitchen appear larger and more welcoming, with the light reflecting off the floor. This photo features a kit that can be retrofitted onto your existing plinths or our range of solid wood plinths.

Choosing kitchen lighting right can completely transform your cook space, and there is a perfect fitting for you whether you are looking to create ‘zones’ or more atmosphere. Which would you pick? Let us know below, or on our Facebook or Twitter pages.


Our Top Five Wooden Kitchen Gadgets

Posted by admin on April 9, 2018 at 10:36 am. Filed under: General

Wooden utensils and kitchen accessories are timeless, and are at home in contemporary and traditional settings. But their ongoing popularity is not just down to aesthetic appeal – wood is a durable, practical and heat-resistant material that is incredibly useful. We have compiled a shortlist of our top five wooden kitchen gadgets that no kitchen is complete without!

Chop Chop

In most cases, worktops are incredibly durable. Our solid wood and laminate worktops are designed for years, but you can minimise the risk of scratches and damage occurring by using a chopping board. Our solid wood chopping boards are stylish, low-maintenance and the perfect complement to your kitchen. We offer a huge range of different timber types, which have all been cut from our worktop stock. Choose to match your chopping board to your worktop for a cohesive look, or order a contrasting board to add a lively touch.

Spice It Up

If you love cooking, you will want your most-used herbs and spices readily available – whether you keep them on display, or hide them inside a cabinet door. Using one of our stunning three-tier solid oak spice racks will place your seasonings within easy and convenient reach. With these spice racks being created from the same wood as our worktops and chopping boards, you may want to display them – however – if you are looking to de-clutter your countertop, these spice racks can easily be fixed to cabinet walls.

A solid wood tablet holder with an iPad on

Credit : Worktop Express

Hold It Steady

It can be frustrating trying to keep recipe books flat when you are following the instructions in them. Download the recipe onto your phone or tablet and use one of these holders instead. Supplied by our sister company Worktop Express, these tablet holders will keep your device securely in place to allow you to concentrate on weighing out ingredients. If you are entertaining guests, these holders are perfect for controlling music via Bluetooth.

Two Peugeot salt and pepper grinders

Credit : Peugeot

Daily Grind

If you cook regularly, you will likely use salt and pepper grinders often. Shakers and grinders are available at any budget, and wooden ones will be a fantastic accessory for wooden worktops or cabinets. In a recent consumer test, these Peugeot salt and pepper grinders scored highly. Peugeot may be most famous for producing cars, but in fact it has been producing grinders since 1842! These particular grinders are not the most budget-friendly on sale, but look smart and are said to grind very well.

Wooden kitchen utensils

Credit : Pixabuy

Useful Utensils

You may not consider utensils to be wooden kitchen gadgets, but they are an important addition to any cooking area. Whether you use it for baking, cooking or to prevent damage to non-stick pans, most will be used on a very regular basis, as they are heat-resistant and versatile. Utensils tend to be inexpensive and will last a long time.

All of these items are recyclable and reusable, meaning they are great options for an eco-friendly kitchen – and you can read more about eco kitchen ideas for your home on our blog.

Would you like these wooden kitchen gadgets in your home? Tell us below or start a conversation on Facebook and Twitter.


Top Tips for Keeping Your Children Safe in the Kitchen

Posted by admin on April 6, 2018 at 11:20 am. Filed under: General

Kitchens have many appliances that are potentially dangerous, especially to inquisitive young children. They may see you using the hob, dishwasher or fridge and want to copy you without understanding the consequences of touching a hot oven or grabbing for something that might fall off. If the appliance is on, they are much more likely to be interested in it. We have compiled a few ideas to keep your kids safe in the kitchen, but there are many other steps you can take to prevent accidents.

Keeping Children Safe Around the Hob

Your hob may be just low enough for your kids to explore. Whilst they may not be able to see over the hob, the dials and gas rings or hot plates might be within reach. Prevent injury by using the rings closest to the back wall and turning your pan handles away from the front of the stove. These steps will help to ensure that children cannot reach the hot pans and rings, and prevent them from being tempted to try and reach the pan handles.

Keeping Children Safe Around the Oven

If you use the oven as frequently as your hob, it can be just as dangerous – if not more. Once again, the knobs may be positioned where your children can reach them. A handle on the door of an oven could be a temptation for young minds – which could cause injury as they may open it and get burned or scalded by the heat. Burns caused by ovens are amongst the most common causes of injury in the kitchen.

This advice is also pertinent for dishwashers, as young children could be scalded by the hot air and hot plates when the dishwasher is opened.

Keeping Children Safe Around the Fridge Freezer

Fridges are a popular target for curious kids to explore because they are usually tall and, of course, are where food is stored. If a child manages to pull the door open, it may cause heavy items to fall out and hurt them. Avoid placing products in the fridge doors if you think they are likely to fall out. To child-proof your kitchen, we recommend using a lock or latch to ensure they cannot get in.

Keeping Children Safe Around Kitchen Cabinets

The cabinets themselves are unlikely to be the cause of harm (especially our sturdy solid oak cabinets) but the products inside could be dangerous. Keep items such as knives, scissors, alcohol, medicine and cleaning products out of sight and reach. If you are using base cabinets to store some of these things – cleaning products under the sink, for example – then it is advisable to use childproof latches and locks.

All of these steps may seem like common sense, but children can be unpredictable and it is easy to forget that they do not know the dangers. As children get older, hopefully all these measures will not be necessary. Children will begin to understand the dangerous aspects and potential causes of injury, and will have learned how to safely use these appliances.

For an easy-to-cook recipe that you can create with your children, read our pancake recipe here. How do you keep your children safe in the kitchen? Tell us in the comments section below or start a conversation on our Facebook and Twitter pages.


Top Colour Combinations for Mix and Match Cabinets

Posted by admin on April 3, 2018 at 2:06 pm. Filed under: General

Kitchen cabinets are no longer limited to one colour. One of the biggest trends for 2018 is creating a two-tone scheme with sets of cupboards painted different colours. This technique can be used to make the kitchen more eye-catching and modern, or to mark out different areas. There are a few different ways to mix and match cabinets, but which is the best for your home?

A modern kitchen with black base cabinets and white wall cabinets

Credit : Designs by Katy

Tuxedo Style

Named after the stark black-and-white contrast of a tuxedo, this look has base cabinets painted in a different colour to the wall cabinets. Generally, base cabinets will be painted in a darker colour than wall units, which are often painted the same colour as the wall to blend in. This effect is used to give the kitchen a sleek, breezy look while retaining the practicality and space. Whilst ‘tuxedo’ suggests a monochromatic appearance, like in the kitchen shown here, any dark grey or blue will also work equally well. The beauty of working with white is that it can pair with almost any colour.

Colour Mix

A kitchen island is the perfect place to use a brighter colour. Choosing a different shade for the island will make it an accent piece and the centre of the room. Not using the same colour will also make it a much more interesting space to entertain guests. Here, the difference is subtle yet noticeable. The grey cabinetry and white walls create a neutral backdrop, allowing the blue island and warm wood worktops to stand out with a welcoming feel.

Keep It Neutral

Opting to paint one set of cabinets does not necessarily mean you have to choose a contrasting or brighter colour. You could pick two very similar neutral colours which, at first glance, look the same. That is the case for this kitchen shown here, as the colour difference is so subtle that you may not see it immediately. But this spacious cook space delicately balances contemporary and traditional.

The bright white base cabinets and full stave worktop imbue a clean, crisp feel, while the cream wall cabinets blend in with the wall colour. Keeping the colour scheme neutral has allowed the owners to opt for a statement purple range oven and extractor hood.

Mixing Materials

Another way to achieve mix and match cabinets is to mix materials. Popular combinations include wooden and gloss cabinets or – as shown in this kitchen – having varnished wooden cabinets alongside painted ones. The mint green colour of the island makes it pop out against the traditional style of the wooden cabinets, enticing people to spend time at it. This combination certainly is bolder than the blue-grey mix above.

There are a few different ways to mix and match your kitchen cabinets. Which is your favourite? Let us know below or share your thoughts on Facebook and Twitter.