Work hard, play hard kitchen design

Blending modern personality around traditional features has created an elegant look and feel into this young couple’s stunning new kitchen…

For newlyweds Harry and Patricia Hanning, the real heart and soul of any home is the kitchen, which incidentally is where you will most likely find this young professional couple. Living in a four-bedroom house in Whitstable, Kent, the dynamic duo live by the motto ‘work hard, play harder’. When redesigning their kitchen, though, it was important for them both to create an open area that was equipped to set any mood depending on the occasion. “We cook for each other almost as much as we entertain for others,” confesses Patricia. “Therefore, a large trendy kitchen area with a number of worktops and plenty of floor space was absolutely essential.”

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Tasked to create the dynamic aesthetics were Ed and Scott of local architectural design firm Fred & Ginger. Transforming the couple’s dream into reality, the design team advised the pair to remain sensitive to the original shell of the building, while suggesting to add bold accents of colour (copper and gold) into the fittings to achieve their effortlessly sophisticated five-star kitchen ready for entertaining at all times.

What would you say is the Hanning’s style?

Harry and Patricia are a fun, quirky and a very welcoming couple. It was quickly apparent that we needed to reflect the energy in their lives. We did this through the design and working of their kitchen; it had to be multi-functional with a bit of flare throughout. For example, when learning about their taste for fine wine, we opted for a fridge that includes different cooling temperatures to keep the white chilled and the red ready to serve at a doorbell’s notice.

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How did you remain sensitive to the original features of the building?

Choosing hidden appliances allowed us to create more space for the couple and their guests, which also created a minimalist feel without sacrificing practicality.

How did you decide on the worktops?

Harry and Patricia wanted worktops they could show off with pride. It didn’t take them long to decide on the smooth texture of marble; there is no more durable element for the kitchen. When we installed the statement centrepiece in front of navy-blue units, the kitchen evolved into a timeless and homely space.

Tell us more about lighting…

It was essential from the beginning that we didn’t want to lose any of the natural light that filled the room, but at the same time we wanted the lighting to be striking. Patricia fell in love with the candle-like chandelier, while Harry was attracted to the gold influence. Both elements work perfectly with the rest of the room.

Did you face any challenges along the way?

To change or not change the existing layout of the room? That really was the question. At the beginning of the project the couple decided to go with a complete restructure of the room; knocking out walls and all sorts to create more space. Our suggestion to install hidden appliances and clever worktops allowed us to create the open area without demolishing any walls. The result was an incredible kitchen that works and plays just as hard as the owners.

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