This may sound easy, however the choice can be quite overwhelming! We knew what we were trying to achieve and approached a number of kitchen suppliers (high street and independent). The quotes we received varied considerably and we couldn't achieve the bespoke design we wanted, at our price point. We decided to consider alternatives and approached a company called Handmade Kitchens of Christchurch, who offered bespoke carpentry at affordable prices.
Family run business outside London (in Dorset) - lower overhead costs
Units can be made to bespoke sizes, enabling you to achieve your dream design
Carcasses are made using real oak veneer, which can be varnished, oiled or painted
Cabinets can be cut out (for example to fit around a pillar/accommodate pipes)
Doors are made in the traditional way with 5 separate pieces (2 x stiles, 2 x rails, 1 x panel), which are put together with morticed and tenoned joints
Wide range of door, cornice and plinth styles
Hinges are solid brass butt hinges in a choice of 3 finishes (chrome, brass, antique brass), which are rebated into the door - will not drop over time
Drawers are made in the traditional way, in solid oak with dove tail joints
Drawer runners are soft close and hidden underneath the drawer, with a quick release mechanism making them easy to remove for cleaning
You can buy cabinet hardware (knobs, cups) from the company or source your own (holes are not pre-drilled)
Cabinets are not painted - need to add in paint and labour costs
The company will not install the kitchen - need to add in labour costs
The company will not design the kitchen for you, however they do have planning kit and an excellent designer, who can be engaged for a fee (highly recommended)
We visited the showroom and were incredibly impressed by the quality of the product and the ability to bespoke the units. To make the most of your visit, think through the points below, together with those in STEP 2: DESIGNING THE KITCHEN - PART 2.
Designing the Kitchen
1). What do you need to store and how often will you need to access it?
Dry ingredients, canned food, cereal, herbs and spices, crisps, fruit and vegetables, bread | A pantry / cupboards either side of fridge/freezer can be great storage for these items
American style fridge/freezer and built in housing - Single door and double door examples. Side cupboards are great for storing food (i.e. pasta), tins, cereal etc. The cupboards above can be allocated to items you use less frequently. We put our Sonos control box in here!