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If you're about to renovate or build a kitchen, there's nothing like the guidance of a renowned kitchen designer
Renovating or building a kitchen is as stressful as it is exciting. That’s why it’s a good idea to get in touch with expert kitchen designers like Annika Rowson from Rowson Kitchen & Joinery. In part one, Annika talked about her background and where she goes for inspiration.
Are there any common things people fail to consider when planning a new kitchen or renovation project?
People usually underestimate the time it takes for the process to come together. They can also fail to consider how much it’s actually going to cost. Generally, we’re pretty thorough in terms of briefing our clients – another reason to go for a designer!
A good designer will also help to clear up any confusion and eliminate failures in terms of design and function. We often work with our clients on flooring & lighting specifications too, which help to ensure a seamless finish.
Is there a golden rule for how much people should spend on a renovation?
We like to say it’s around 8%, but it can be quite difficult to get clients up to that price point. That percentage is definitely what you should be spending, but people will often spend less. In many ways it’s important to find the right balance. While budgets are important, kitchens and bathrooms sell homes, and we encourage our clients to consider this when undertaking a renovation.
How common are major renovations? The projects where people need to pull out walls and open things up?
They’re actually surprisingly common. Usually when I’m brought in early I’ll have input into whether clients should remove walls or extend the kitchen. There are also architects I work with on occasion who will take my kitchen suggestions into account at the very early stages of a project which I appreciate as it allows me more flexibility with design.
We hear a lot about the importance of the work triangle. Just how important is it?
It’s incredibly important. The sink is the highest used area of the kitchen and it’s obviously utilised all the time. This means we need to create seamless flow between the hob, fridge and sink. Getting this right makes working in a kitchen so much more fluid & natural.
This triangle influences the design of the kitchen from the earliest stages of a project.
For those people planning a kitchen renovation or new build, what would be your one piece of advice?
My one piece of advice would be to research your designer. There are so many tools online that can make finding good designers so much easier. It’s also really important to choose a designer who has an aesthetic that appeals to you and matches up with your own sensibilities.
Once you’ve found a designer you like, it’s also a good idea to ask if you can view some of their past projects on site to get an idea of the materials they use and the fit and finish of their kitchens. Enlisting the help of a designer can help you to eliminate costly mistakes and will also help you to cohesively bring your renovation together cohesively.
Crazy splashbacks: Yes or no?
(Laughs) Absolutely not! It’s all about elegance, style and function. They’re the key ingredients in a good splashback and a good kitchen.
However, if people are feeling a little wild the splashback is a great place to experiment. It’s an area that’s easy to adjust and relatively inexpensive to change.
So no LED splashbacks?
No, I like structure and elegance. It’s all about keeping things classy! For that reason I definitely like to stick to tiles or benching materials. We very rarely specify glass splashbacks as people are trending towards texture.
Any last comments?
It all starts with the kitchen, it really is the hub of the home and all other areas branch off from there. It’s so important to get this part of your home right, and a big part of that comes down to the designer.
Kitchen renovations can be tough, so take a look at some of our other articles if you’re still feeling a little lost.
If you want to get started with a new kitchen, read the ‘Getting started’ guide.If you’d like to learn more about Annika and her company, check out their website.
See more by Annika:
- Minimalist family kitchen with black wall cabinetry and wood-framed island
- Large kitchen with two islands
First published date: 18 July 2017
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