When our clients viewed a rambling Grade II listed former Vicarage positioned in a bucolic English village, their gut instinct was a resounding “yes”. Although major alterations would be required to bring this beautiful Georgian house up to speed with the twenty-first century, our clients’ focus was to restore and renovate in a sympathetic and understated way.
Renovating houses takes energy, diligence and patience in equal measure and the result is a classic English family home with simplicity at its core – comfortable, welcoming and perfect for entertaining family and friends. We worked with the clients to design the open plan kitchen and dining area, a walk in pantry and the utility/ boot room which offers the main access route into the kitchen via the back door.
The Nickleby cabinetry was chosen for its classic English style, and is painted in H|M’s own colour palette designed exclusively in collaboration with Mylands. The perimeter cabinetry in the kitchen and utility / boot room is painted in Windward, while the island and walk in pantry are painted in Top Hat. All hardware is finished in aged brass as a nod to the Georgian heritage of the property.
As always, the zoning of the kitchen was the critical starting point: as keen cooks, the clients opted immediately to include a Classic Lacanche Chalonnais range cooker that would be positioned within the existing chimney and allows the Westin extraction to be hidden from view. Finishing this original chimney with a contemporary overmantel allowed this area to become the main focal point of the kitchen. The finishing design detail to this cooking area is the antique mirror splashback positioned behind the range cooker. Easy to clean and maintain, this robust and specially toughened splashback bounces the light back across the room.
Directly across from the Lacanche range cooker is the bespoke kitchen island which not only serves as the main preparation area but also provides additional storage concealing a pull-out compartmentalised bin, Gaggenau undercounter refrigerator, a set of four drawers and on the opposite side seating for three. This island has been left deliberately clear to allow a large area for food prep as well as a serving area for large parties so that guests can help themselves.
On the other side of the island is a run of tall cabinetry including the Gaggenau French door fridge freezer which is positioned centrally. To the left of the Gaggenau is a large crockery cupboard and to the right is a day pantry to ensure everyday store cupboard ingredients are nearby for those speedy mid-week suppers and within easy reach of the island. The sink run sits underneath two large Georgian sash windows that look out across the beautifully landscaped gardens. A set of three drawers provides masses of storage for cookware and bakeware. The top drawer is perfect for storing utensils, the two beneath are larger and designed to store pots and pans.
Situated in the alcove to the left hand side of the chimney, is the countertop cupboard with bi-fold door which our clients use as a breakfast and appliance cupboard. The bi-fold door conceals the toaster and free-standing microwave and the large shelves above provide plenty of space for cups, glasses and drinks. The drawer below provides easy access to cutlery, and the Gaggenau under-counter refrigerator on the island behind provides immediate access to milk and butter making breakfast a quick and seamless affair.