Soft lines and practical materials characterise this family kitchen by design company .
'The kitchen is housed in an extension built just off the dining room of this Arts and Crafts house,' says designer Martin Postle. 'It needed to be sympathetic to the existing architecture, but the owners are a stylish young family with two small children, so it also had to have a design that took into consideration practicality and their taste.'
Designer: 'As the hob isn't against the wall, and the ceilings are so high, there was no space to fix an extractor or filter fan, an essential part of a kitchen. The solution was to use a downdraught extractor, which raises and lowers in to the island at the flick of a switch. The one we have used is the "Parsifal" by .'
Designer: 'Because the room is rectangular we felt that a traditional island with a breakfast bar along the back might form an undesirable barrier to the dining area beyond. To keep a sense of flow we added this perpendicular, T-shape table. With this arrangement, four people can sit facing each other, rather than side by side at a bar, which is more conducive to conversation. Beneath are inbuilt speakers and shelves for cook books.'
Owner: 'These slats of wood are actually a "functional wall", where, if we wished, we could hang utensil hooks, shelves or even another cupboard. However, we liked how they looked so much that we couldn't bear to hang anything on them, and treat them more as if they were a section of decorative panelling.'
Owner: 'We were trying to find a balance between bright, airy modernity and the warmth of a traditional kitchen, which we achieved by using natural wood. We chose bleached oak, and finished the cupboards in a soft grey paint.
For the surface of the island we wanted something with the look of marble, but as it isn't the most durable of surfaces we instead chose a compressed quartz composite from , which is much more hard-wearing but lightly veined to look like Carrara.'
Designer: 'The dresser to the right of the sink is what we call an "appliance garage", created solely to conceal electrical equipment, such as the toaster, blender and kettle, which are much better out of sight. Because the space between the island and the back wall is narrow, it has pocket doors, which open and then slide inside the sides of the cupboard, so that they don't obstruct the space when the appliances are in use.'
Owner: 'We chose these 'Octo' downlights from to create a dramatic impact without overpowering the space.'