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Loving all stylish and wonderful things in life, fashion and interiors. I am English but living my life in the fabulous city of Melbourne in Australia. Welcome and please read on.... (contact me at sjstubbs19@gmail.com)

Monday, April 23, 2012

Mini Makeover - my kitchen in England

My photographs have somehow come out back to front so to see what the kitchen cabinets looked like before you will have to scroll down to the last pic. Sorry!! It's not a huge kitchen - a thin long, galley kitchen but it has some charm and now the makeover has happened I LOVE it. 

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 And if you have done that you will see that they were a nasty sort of orange pine colour. We inherited them when we bought the cottage in England almost 5 years ago before we came to Australia.  Here in Melbourne, if you recall, we rent a property....  the cottage in UK is where my heart is still, I have to admit.
 Also if you remember, I went back to England for 6 weeks last September which was bliss and that was when I organised this mini makeover..... All it took was some paint (and a very talented kitchen man I have to admit -he works freelance for Smallbone and for Mark Wilkinson kitchens in England) and I was fortunate enough to find him. My lucky day.  He did such a great job and put up with me prevaricating over a 1,000 different shades of Farrow and Ball whites. 
 To make it easier for me he painted 5 boards with different shades so I could make up my mind!! It was difficult but in the end I went for a 'Shaded White' .

 The pic above shows the difference between the wall and the cabinets... very subtle but pleasing.

Pic below shows the butlers sink - porcelain - this was in the original kitchen and although a bit worn and scratched I would not change it - love it so much.  Oh and the wooden work surfaces too - they are great.

As you can see from the BEFORE pic above the cabinets were all wood (which seemed too much with the wooden work surfaces) and the other change we made were the handles from those small metal ones shown in the photograph to large ceramic round knobs....

So there we are - my kitchen in England in our little cottage.  Miss it very much... Oh and one more change were the stripey rugs I found at a bargain price on sale in our local carpet place.


  1. Wow, what a difference! Fantastic!! The white cabinets really make it look bigger and brighter.

  2. Your gorgeous kitchen looks almost palatial compared to the tiny one we had in England. It is just beautiful and I particularly like the wooden benches, the sink and the lovely rug on the floor. What a fabulous space to cook in.

  3. Oh lovely. My heart always lightens when anything made of pine in my house disappears under fresh bright paint. The place looks tranquil and beautiful. I hope you will get to spend a lot more time there.

  4. Oh what a difference a bit of paint makes!!!!
    It looks so elegant and user friendly now...clever girl!!!!

  5. Love it. X a million. It looks so clean and fresh but still in keeping with the style of the times. I love a gorgeous vintage kitchen!

    K xx

  6. It's a lovely kitchen. You have a gorgeous home, no wonder you miss it! I wish we had more space, we have a tiny galley kitchen and not enough room to swing a tea towel.

  7. I love white kitchens - i also love that you left the timber bench tops as they look fab.

  8. I love the transformation! - It looks so cosy and somehow very 'british', like you'd want to bake teacakes in there :)

    Great work on this kitchen design !

  9. LOVE it!!! Looks divine and love the butlers sink 11/10 x

  10. It's so English. The before shots are just like the kitchen I left behind in Yorkshire. There was pine everywhere in that house! I think you did a great job and kept the gorgeous character of the room.

  11. before i even read your post the first thing i thought of was smallbone. seriously, this is gorgeous sarah! it looks just like a kitchen in english homes magazine. i bet it kills you to not be there. i love the knobs. i wanted that size for my kitchen but couldn't find them here. beautiful, beautiful. xo janet

  12. Your kitchen looks very comfortable, I can see why you miss it. After all, as they say, the kitchen is the heart of the home.

    Thank you for your visit to my blog. And I checked out your post on Fontaine, it definitely looks like my kind of store! I will endeavour to visit when next overseas...

    Thank you, until next time, Tammy

  13. This is a gorgeous reno!
    Love the creamy tone you used too.
    Seriously you must love working in that space.

  14. Fine work. Looks like new: )!

  15. Lovely! Have missed reading your posts; too much work/no play... Hope all is well.

    1. Lovely to hear from you... Hope all is well with you x

  16. Wooden counters are the best,love it classic,my type of kitchen.

    Had to smile about the choice of white in F/B paints! Amazing what a coat of paint does for a kitchen.You look to have lots of storage...what a find your paint chap was! Ida

  17. Your kitchen makeover is fantastic, it looks great. I love the sink and the benchtops. xx

  18. This is probably the most common kitchen sink around and is available in all prices ranges. However, you don’t expect to buy the best quality sink for a cheap price. Usually a cheap stainless steel sink is made of thin metal which flexes and vibrates

  19. Oh most lovely, that's the shade I need so... 'shaded white" I am demented by too yellow, too crew, too pink shades of white.

  20. AMAZING!! The paint is such a transformation.

  21. Kitchen looks lovely after your makeover. But I'm not a fan of butler's sinks. Lived in England for five years and discovered they're too big for normal size wash-ups, and high risk for fragile items. Also the water gets cold very quickly (and you have to use so much of it as the sink is so big), usually before you've finished. Sinks are OK I guess for big items like saucepans or for handwashing clothing items. My next door neighbour showed me what most British women do and that's use a plastic bowl inside the butler's sink. She always kept a red plastic bowl in hers. It's a practical solution but doesn't look good. In small kitchens there's usually no room to store the bowl when not is use so it just sits in the sink which really looks squalid (eg "kitchen sink" plays and films of the 60s). I have to confess that I also used one of these bowls in the butler's sink in my little kitchen in Cambridge and always hated it. Give me a good old stainless steel double sink and drainers anyday, so practical and doesn't need a plastic bowl. Best wishes, Pamela


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