A clever optical illusion or two – and some beautifully crafted solid walnut – ensures that this simple, elegant Scandi-inspired kitchen fulfils all its owners’ expectations, both practically and aesthetically.
One glance at this open-plan kitchen and you’d be forgiven for thinking that it’s a freestanding design, featuring utilitarian-chic cabinetry topped by stone work surfaces. In fact, this understatedly elegant room boasts all the benefits of a fitted kitchen, because that’s actually what it is.
So what was the thinking behind this truly bespoke design? Its origins lay in the collection of magazine clippings that the homeowners took with them when they first visited the showroom.
Although the family were very specific about their requirements, Richard Mason of The Secret Drawer found that there weren’t many constraints caused by the space itself, since a blank canvas was provided during some major remodelling. To take advantage of the stunning valley and moorland views form the front of the property, the owners engaged an architect to redesign the house’s layout; switching the kitchen from the back of the house to the front, and creating an open-plan living space that would be just as perfect for entertaining as everyday family life. The new layout included a kitchen, snug, and dining area – with a central wood-burner and a step-through out onto a large balcony – as well as a utility accessed just off the kitchen.
The elegant simplicity of this design belies the effort which went into its creation – it was painstakingly crafted by hand (taking cabinetmaker Darren Lambert about eight weeks in total), and is all of thoughtful details. The cabinet frame features beading around dit, to allow the hinges to be inlaid for a sleeker finish; there are receded LED strip lights hidden in the wall-hung shelves (behind a mini pelmet to reduce glare), and of course a hidden drawer – the company’s signature feature, which is left for the client to later find. This unique addition emphasises the truly bespoke nature of this room, and of all the company’s designs.
The freestanding furniture-style aesthetic was chosen to co-ordinate seamlessly with the open-plan dining and living space, used for both family time and entertaining – though the design boasts all the practical benefits of a fitted kitchen. Additionally, the rich tones of the bespoke walnut cabinetry are offset by the use of cool, pale shades – white Metro tiles and ceramic sink, a stainless steel range cooker, and grey ceramic tiled flooring temper the warmth of the timber, keeping the look light.