This bespoke island in American black walnut by Chamber Furniture blends in naturally with the trunks of the palms outside, from £40,000. chamberfurniture.co.uk
Maybe the title ‘Inside out’ does sound a tad funny, but it’s intentional –we don’t just mean ‘bringing the outside in’, but also want to draw your attention to the lovely idea of standing ‘inside looking out’ on to a stunning view
If you have a lovely garden or a view to die for… then you’ve just got to position your kitchen to takeadvantage of it. Maybe this calls for an extension, or a rethinkabout which room is used for what purpose, but one thingis certain, you won’t regret it. Then layout your kitchen soyou can see the view at all times – even when cooking.
‘Looking out’ generally means you’ll need an island – andyou’ll see why in a minute. Ask yourself: ‘When am I mostlikely to be in the kitchen?’ this way you can maximise theposition of the key zones, according to where you spend mosttime. If you’re a keen cook maybe incorporate a sink or twoand prep/chopping board area in the island, then you’ll beable to position yourself behind it, and prep away to your heart’s content while looking at the garden. If you’re not a keen cook but always eat breakfast, why not incorporate an island with a breakfast bar that faces the garden?
As we spend more time in the kitchen than anywhere else in the home, it’s really worth going all out when planning a new kitchen, so don’t forget floor-to-ceiling windows to give an uninterrupted view, or bi-fold/sliding doors leading to an outside dining room so you can spill outside the minute the sun comes out.
Must-haves: accessibility, think about what you store where, so that you’re not walking around the island all the time; kitchen cabinets with pull-out storage (not shelves) for easy access; in-ceiling Bluetooth-enabled speakers; double the number of power points you’ll think you need; and LED lighting on different circuits and dimmers to take you from ‘bright’ for breakfast to ‘soft’ for a romantic night in.
Think: great views, kitchen islands, throwing open the (bi-fold) doors, seamless indoor/outdoor living, full-on summer entertaining, open-plan family living…