December kitchens are ALWAYS a joy to do – clients are excited to see their project finished and get ready for Christmas celebrations. This was no exception as Bernard and Teresa were eager to arrange everything in order to receive family from Ireland.

At the reveal Teresa had a few tears she was so pleased, I got a few hugs and Bernard was thrilled that Teresa was thrilled! Job done.

Their beech kitchen was around 15 years old and they were just fed up with it – it doesn’t get a lot of light and they were both a little down about what to do. It’s also the first thing you see in front of the stairs so not the most joyful thing to see in the morning on the way to make tea! Their words not mine :0)

Tired and a little worn, the clients were fed up with looking at it

There is a possibility that they might sell the villa in a couple of years so a classic neutral colour was what they wanted – something other than white which would have appeared cold and a little sterile here I think. A match to ‘School House White’ was chosen and signed off by them when they had seen a full size colour sample. It’s an off-white which has no hint of yellow and not a grey, very easy on the eye and the perfect shade not to offend potential buyers.

All the doors and drawer fronts were taken to the workshop which left the end panels, cornice and light pelmet to do onsite.

Handles, hinges and hardware are always removed prior to painting for a professional finish.

These items are always cleaned and polished prior to refitting. The aim is always the same, to hand the kitchen back as NEW.

The drill in the workshop never changes! A thorough clean and degrease before a sand down to prepare the surface for the primer.

I prefer to leave a period of 12 hours after priming before top coating to ensure proper curing time – the chemical bond between surface and primer is essential for the success of the paint system. Paint too soon and you risk trapping moisture between paint layers that will cause paint failure over time.

As a traditional painter the same number of paint coats are applied to fronts and backs, it’s more beautiful to open your doors and be just as proud and also serves the practical purpose of preventing warping. As paint cures it tightens and can cause wood or MDF to bend.

The oven housing and microwave surround are brought forward so the unit edges can be professionally coated

So the control and paint process is easy in the workshop! Generally the doors are professionally sprayed unless you want a bespoke hand painted finish. Onsite the whole process is essentially the same and we try to make sure there is a minimum of upheaval in your home while it’s being done.

Your home painted ‘bit’ normally takes 3 visits to complete (depending on the size of the project of course), the first being the longest with all the cleaning and prepping. Subsequent visits are of shorter duration.

Existing handles are polished up before being refitted
Unit edges are painted so that your new doors sit on the same colour and there is no shadow line from before
Granite worktops are masked
Crisp lines are essential to the overall look of the finished kitchen so a great deal of care is taken when caulking and filling to get it just right.

When I’m not onsite I can be found doing the doors! Once everything is ready these are carefully wrapped in bubble-wrap or corrugated cardboard and transferred `home’. A professional kitchen painter wants them to get back safely.

Refit days are always exciting, there’s the anticipation of seeing it all go back together, pride in our work and joy in seeing our clients approval. We do also get to have a fair amount of tea which is always very welcome!

A professional carpenter does my refits, I want the very best fitting – no good if the doors and kitchen aren’t correctly adjusted and often we repair or tweak something. It really does look fresh out of the showroom when we’ve finished.

Teresa and Bernard also had 3 stair rails completely stripped, re-stained in a more modern oak and varnished.

These had to be super smooth for health and safety not just for looks.

To brighten up your kitchen there are so many colour choices, you don’t have to feel limited to choosing white. Little nuances of colour, a shade here and there differentiate your kitchen from everyone else’s!!

What could be better than that.

Written by Samantha Bayley