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Kitchen Tour: A Grey Handleless Design Transforms a 1950s Home

Pale grey hues and industrial materials create a contemporary kitchen that fits seamlessly into an open-plan layout

Houzz UK contributor. Freelance interiors journalist with over 20 years’ experience… More

With architect plans in place for an extended ground floor and a rejigged layout, the next step for the owners of this 1950s property was the kitchen. “The original property was a small house that has since been completely remodelled and extended, more than doubling its size,” says Lindsay Anderson of Sustainable Kitchens, the company that took on the project. “We worked with the owners on the design of the kitchen, walk-in pantry, boot room and utility.”

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Kitchen at a Glance
Who lives here A professional couple with two children
Location Witney, Oxfordshire
Property A 1950s detached house with four bedrooms and four bathrooms
Kitchen dimensions 20 sq m
Designer Sustainable Kitchens
Architect Woodfield Brady Architects

Photos by Charlie O’Beirne of Lukonic

The new kitchen – part of the property’s extension – lies at the front of the house and forms part of an open-plan kitchen, dining and living space. “The owners wanted a clean aesthetic with an industrial element to the design that echoed the contemporary, minimalist look of the rest of the house,” Lindsay explains.

The walk-in pantry is concealed behind a sliding pocket door. “It features oak open-drawer cabinets and exposed shelving, plus wraparound wall shelves and LED lights,” she adds.

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Clean-lined, pale grey cabinetry with stainless-steel appliances and concrete-effect quartz worktops creates the slick look the owners were after.

“The flat-panel doors sit within a frame and the handles are routed into the doors and drawers,” Lindsay says. “The owners wanted a contemporary industrial look, so we painted the cabinets grey and built a stainless-steel-wrapped appliance housing.”

Birch plywood was used for the carcasses and the door and drawer fronts, with frames made from solid oak.

Cabinets painted in Purbeck Stone, Farrow & Ball.

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A bespoke stainless-steel cube houses the built-in fridge and oven tower. “The appliance cube is clad in stainless-steel, which always provides a few challenges,” Lindsay says. “It’s a look clients love, but it can be very complicated to achieve.”

SF6372X oven; SF4390MCX combi oven and microwave, both Smeg. IK 3510 Comfort integrated fridge-freezer, Liebherr.

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A central island unit was key to the flow and layout of the kitchen. It measures 1480 x 1334mm, with a breakfast bar along one side for casual dining with family and friends.

“A lye finish was used on the oak interior of the breakfast bar, echoing the grey of the cabinets,” Lindsay explains. “White wood lye has a whitening effect and stops the orange tint of the wood coming through. It’s often used to create a pale, Scandinavian look.”

The worktops are made from an engineered quartz that gives the look of concrete, but with a more hardwearing finish.

Grigio Concretto quartz worktops, Arena Stone.

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As well as drawer and cupboard storage, plus tray and chopping board slots, the multi-functional island is also home to an extra-wide induction hob with stainless-steel trim and flexible cooking zones.

A large, stainless-steel ceiling extractor is built in above the hob to efficiently remove all unwanted cooking smells and vapours.

EH975MV17E 90cm induction hob, Siemens. Stella 90cm extractor fan, Falmec.

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Apart from the tall appliance unit, all the cabinetry is kept at base level, creating a lighter, brighter feel to the kitchen.

The bank of perimeter wall cupboards includes storage, a sink unit, an integrated bin and a dishwasher. A built-in wine cabinet is tucked into one side of the island.

“The utility room contains the freezer, washer-dryer and boiler, while the walk-in pantry provides most of the food storage,” Lindsay says. “This enabled the kitchen area to be fairly minimalist and without wall cabinets, which can sometimes close a room in.”

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Matt white metro tiles with dark grout enhance the modern industrial vibe.

Phoenix 3-in-1 boiling-water tap in polished nickel, Perrin & Rowe.

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Bespoke cutlery drawers on the island unit create a space for every last utensil.

The pocket door to the walk-in pantry can be pulled shut to hide away the contents; when opened, it triggers spotlights to illuminate the space.

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Thanks to an extension and considerable remodelling work, the kitchen is part of a larger all-in-one cooking/eating/living space and the island unit overlaps into the dining zone.

Large, dark grey ceramic tiles, warmed by underfloor heating, are laid throughout this ground-floor space.

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A low-level integrated sideboard (designed by the architect and built by the building contractor) links this area into the family room.

Bold yellow and blue seating adds cheerful colour to the industrial scheme, while the central wood-burning stove creates a cosy ambience in the colder months.

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An entrance to the left of the integrated sideboard leads into a boot room and utility space, also designed by Sustainable Kitchens.

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The boot room provides further storage, with cupboards, open shelving, a shoe nook, coat hooks and a storage bench.

“The cabinets match the kitchen units, while the bench top and coat rack are treated in the same white lye finish as the breakfast bar interior,” Lindsay says.

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The original 1950s property has been transformed.

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A floorplan of the ground floor showing the kitchen and pantry at the front of the house, leading back to the dining area and sitting room with the boot room and utility to the side.

Tell us…
What do you think of this industrial-style kitchen with built-in pantry, boot room and utility? Share your thoughts in the Comments section.
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