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Kitchen Tour: A Victorian Semi Gets a Dream Kitchen

Rich indigo units, marble worktops and a touch of industrial chic make this kitchen seriously stylish

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

Achieving this dream space wasn’t all plain sailing. The original kitchen was over 20 years old and situated in an extension that had to be demolished and rebuilt. The owner of the property, who lives here with his wife and three children, has experience in property developing, so he took on the project of building the new extension. The family wanted their kitchen to be unique, so they called in Jamie Blake of bespoke cabinetry makers Blakes London. “They had a firm idea of what they wanted from the space – a ‘family working kitchen’. They also knew the style they liked, but needed assistance in pulling together ideas and making the space work the way they wanted it to,” says Blake.

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Kitchen at a Glance
Who lives here A family of five
Location Wandsworth, London
Property A Victorian semi-detached house
Designer Jamie Blake of Blakes London

One feature of the new extension – the Crittall-style doors leading out to the garden – played a big part in the overall look of the kitchen. It was these doors that helped the owners decide on a ‘classic-industrial’ vibe, which is a completely different style to the original kitchen. “The original kitchen was a very old, oak-veneered design,” says Blake. The new indigo units are now the stars of the open-plan space, which includes a dining and living area to one side of the huge island.

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The super-sized island is a hard-working feature of the kitchen. It’s fully equipped with two sinks (one prep, one main) and two dishwashers. It also has two integrated bins, a wine cooler and pan drawers. A row of factory-style metal pendants suspended above adds to the industrial feel of the kitchen and provides plenty of task lighting.

Pendant lights, Holloways of Ludlow.

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A line of timber-topped bar stools creates a relaxed place for the family to sit, chat and socialise. The mix of mango wood and steel enhances the soft, utilitarian vibe of the décor.

Welles bar stools, Swoon Editions.

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The kitchen is a bespoke, handmade design by Blakes London. “The owners wanted a dark blue colour, which we searched for. In the end, we mixed up our own bespoke colour,” says Blake. “They loved it.” The rich indigo units are teamed with metallic cup and bar handles for a look that is industrial yet welcoming.

The tall units at this end of the kitchen neatly conceal the fridge and freezer.

Check out more contemporary dark-hued kitchens

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Natural light pours in through the wall of Crittall-style doors, ensuring the room stays bright amid the backdrop of dark-blue units.

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Situated against one wall is the kitchen’s cooking zone. It is flanked by tall, tailor-made storage units, which create an easy-on-the-eye symmetry.

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A distressed glass splashback behind the range cooker adds a hint of glamour. “The reflective surface enhances the feeling of space in this room,” says Blake.

Range cooker, Britannia.

Discover how reflective surfaces can enhance your cookspace

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On close inspection, you can see that the distressed glass splashback is actually made up of individual tiles, which were supplied by Blakes London.

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Well-organised storage ensures there is a place for every last plate and utensil – a necessity in any open-plan living space.

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To the left of the range cooker, a double-door pantry opens up to reveal space for dried foods, spices, condiments and a kettle. It is made from solid oak.

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Next to the pantry, a half-height breakfast dresser with bifold doors is neat and space-saving. It houses all of the items needed for breakfast, including a coffee machine, toaster, mugs, bowls and cereal.

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Traditional oak parquet flooring was installed to be true to the age and character of the property.

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The Carrara marble worktops offer a striking contrast to the rich blue units. “The clients wanted a lighter worktop with some natural movement in it, which the veining provides,” says Blake.

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The kitchen leads to a small ‘library’. Using similar Crittall-style doors here creates a unified look.

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Blakes London was also involved in the redesign of the library, just a few steps up from the kitchen. “We made the bespoke shelving and even the TV cabinetry, which are all painted in Railings by Farrow & Ball,” says Blake.

Joinery painted in Railings, Farrow & Ball.

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In the library, even the skirting boards were painted a soft black to create a cocooning effect. While this dark hue is not the same colour used on kitchen units, the two shades complement each other.

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The library leads through to the formal lounge at the front of the house, which simply needed a fresh coat of paint.

What do you think of this impressive kitchen/living space? Share your thoughts in the Comments section.
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