Some time ago, the Barr Build team renovated a stunning Victorian property, tucked park-side in between Putney and Richmond. Of course, in true Barr Group style, no stone was left unturned… apart from the kitchen, which was untouched with the view to a full extension and remodelling project at a later date.
We were delighted when our clients Rachel and Stuart, by then with a strong connection to the organisation, came back to us for their next build phase. The existing kitchen was stripped and partly demolished, before the entire area was excavated by one metre, creating a level entry from kitchen to garden. Previously, there had been five steep steps down to the garden, making it feel rather inaccessible. Inside, small apertures and a clunky layout meant the old kitchen had a ‘basement-ish’ feel; the renovated space is positively cathedral-esque in comparison. The floor-to-ceiling end-face glazing is over three and a half metres high, and a roof light bar gives even more natural light. With a statement floating oak staircase and contemporary metal handrail, rising from a polished concrete floor, the overall effect is a breathtaking play on conventional proportions.
From first receiving the kitchen brief, it was clear that the cabinetry would need to reflect the dramatic proportions of the space. In addition, our clients are both wonderfully tall, so it seemed only right to adjust the conventional worktop height to something more ergonomically suited. It was decided that a metre in height (100mm higher than the average) would be a strong starting point for the new kitchen design.
The old kitchen lacked extra cupboard space but did have a basement cellar (already in situ but lacking in functionality), providing the Barr Kitchens design team with the perfect storage solution. Cabinet-style double doors were designed, leading to an open larder and laundry room (looking up you find a ceiling-mounted pulley drying rack). Tucked away behind that, in true Narnia-style, is the cellar - now on the same level as the kitchen and equipped to store all the overflow items a family could possible need (or, of course, the wine!).
Our clients’ aesthetic leaning was for a contemporary take on a country kitchen, using light-coloured timber and a neutral palette. Offering timber options, from white oiled to natural oak - and everything in between - allowed our clients to find their perfect wood tone which was used to manufacture the bespoke slim-framed ‘modern-Shaker’ cabinetry.
Likewise, worktop samples were carefully scrutinised, with all parties agreeing that Dekton’s marble-effect ‘Entzo’ would give the perfect balance of drama and simplicity. Clean lines were achieved by incorporating an integrated draining board and using a matched upstand, and matched narrow display shelf. A special design touch is the 1810 sink, which is clad in Dekton Entzo, to provide a seamless look.
Further design details include Arbar handles by Armac Martin in their Chocolate Bronze plate finish, which pick up the warm tones in the Timber and Dekton. The hand-painted larder cupboards exhibit black bar handles, reflecting the look of the contemporary metal stair-rail. Finally a Miele down-draft hob and integrated ovens bring ultimate functionality.
Our clients, Rachel and Stuart, are delighted with the end result and even more thrilled that they can now cook without having to stoop over! We thank them for allowing us to share their story and be part of the continued journey of their fabulous family home.