The Kitchen Collection HD Laurel Hex Multi Porcelain Tile by British Ceramic Tile

I think this might be my dream kitchen. It features The Kitchen Collection HD Laurel Hex Multi Porcelain Tiles from British ceramic Tile

So in my last post I told you guys all about my planned bathroom makeover which is due to start in just under two weeks…I’m so freakin’ excited I might just explode! But today I wanted to share another exciting project with you as we are also doing a kitchen makeover, YAY!! I can’t even begin to tell you how badly it needs a revamp, it makes me shudder every time I go into the kitchen. You see, as I’ve explained before here, the guy who owned our flat before us fancied himself as a bit of a property developer, but almost everything he did here sucks!! The kitchen itself was brand new but the workmanship is just appalling and so shoddy. The kitchen floor tiles are all uneven and when we first moved in we were constantly tripping up on them. The wall tiles have been applied using dabs of adhesive here and there so they are all uneven too and he didn’t use spacers either. He replaced the light fitting and did an awful job there, it looks really messy. It really is just shocking and I can’t wait to remove all trace of his not-so-handy-work with our kitchen makeover! 

In my last post, I explained how I had the opportunity to have a one-to-one consultation with DIY-expert Jo Bahari as part of MoneySuperMarket‘s #MSMHomeImprove campaign. The campaign aims to raise awareness of the fact that making improvements in and around your home can have an effect on your home insurance policy and sometimes even drive it down. We’ve mostly done a a bit of cosmetic work so far such as painting and wallpapering and we’ve had a few new carpets fitted, but the plans we have for our bathroom and kitchen makeover are a bit more extensive.

The Design Sheppard Kitchen Before

Our kitchen as it is now, cluttered and severely lacking storage space. (Please excuse the appalling pictures)

We currently have a beech kitchen that looks like every other budget kitchen fitted throughout the UK. Whilst there is nothing wrong with it, I would like it to be a bit more individual and unique. Our budget won’t stretch to a new kitchen sadly because if it would I’d be straight down to IKEA for a new Metod kitchen or I’d go with Magnet Kitchens as they have some great space saving designs. But we plan to make some small changes such as painting the cabinets, replacing work tops, sink, tap and hob (and eventually the oven) and we will be replacing all the wall and floor tiles.

Magnet Kitchens Plinth Drawer

Magnet Kitchen’s Plinth Drawer

Our kitchen is quite small and doesn’t really make the best use of the space. We are sorely lacking in storage space. We currently only have one double cupboard that we use to store food and all the others are used for kitchen equipment. My husband is a real foodie and loves to cook so we have excessive amounts of pots, pans and ingredients. As a temporary measure, when we moved in we put up some open shelves. This is quite trendy at the moment but only looks good when used to display pretty things. Half used bags of pasta and rice really don’t look good on open shelves and make the whole kitchen look even more cluttered. So they have to go and we need to come up with some alternative storage solutions that won’t break the bank.

One wall in the kitchen is pretty redundant . It features a 1970’s style hatch through to the living room which we actually find really useful having two small kids we need to keep an eye on. But this means we don’t have any wall cabinets on this wall. Again we have temporarily put up a shelf above the hatch which looks awful. We can’t really put kitchen cabinets on this wall as we wouldn’t be able to get into the kitchen if we did. We need to get creative so that we can use this wall to create additional storage.

Finally we have a real lack of work surface. I have considered adding a fold down solution under the hatch but as this is where the radiator is this would not really work.

So as well as getting advice about my bathroom, Jo also offered some helpful tips regarding my kitchen. I explained all the issues I just described and here are some of Jo’s suggestions:

Storage is clearly the key issue for you and I would suggest a couple of things. You could fit a wall unit between the fridge and the extractor and also another one where you currently have the cover shelves. Also over the hatch you could use a couple of the VALJE wall units from IKEA and maybe a wall unit over the kitchen window.

IKEA valje-wall-cabinet-with-door-white

You can install a small half shelf in the cupboards for things like spices and cooking ingredients. And for the corner cupboards things just get lost unless you use something like this solution below. You can buy these interior fittings from most hardware stores and they should fit easily to the units but check before you buy.

IKEA UTRUSTA corner base cabinet pull-out ftting
UTRUSTA Corner base cabinet pull-out fitting from IKEA

As for the lack of work surface I think once you start putting a few more wall units in you won’t notice it so much as the kitchen will feel less cluttered. You can put a section of work surface over the tumble dryer. And if you put a small shelf above this you could put the gadgets and appliances on the shelf to maximise work surface space.

So again, some great ideas from Jo and it’s given me plenty to think about. I’m still scared to get going with this project but at the end of the day things can’t get much worse so whatever we decide to do will be an improvement! I’ll keep you posted on our progress! And if you have any suggestions please feel free to share them as I’m always interested to hear from you guys!

Disclosure: This post has been written in collaboration with MoneySuperMarket who arranged my one-to-one consultation with Jo Behari. However, all the opinions in this post are my own and I stress that I only collaborate with brands and companies that I genuinely like and believe that my readers will like too. 

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