Designing a kitchen can be challenging. Where to put the main players on your culinary stage? Having a starting point is always helpful, something that can’t be moved, that is set (in stone).

Here is what we had to work with:

This looks like a useful place to stack a dismantled kitchen....

This looks like a useful place to stack a dismantled kitchen….

Hang on a minute, what’s that lurking behind all that chipboard and rubble?

Now that's a useful space to put something

Well that’s a useful space to put something

How fantastic! A lovely feature, a brick chimney place, sporting original soot from the old fires. Now, if I could just find a suitable appliance….

I went searching, and found a gorgeous ex-display Stoves ‘Richmond’ oven at a metre wide in a local independent appliance store, aptly named Affordable and Stylish, for a satisfying discount. I also managed to find a cool chrome and glass curved extractor fan which fitted the space perfectly (although the measuring of an arch proved too complex for my mathematical skills, so we’ll definitely chalk that one up to luck rather than judgement).

The end result?

Ind-rustic-rial (?) pairing... New nestles into old very comfortably.

Ind-rustic-rial (?) pairing… New nestles into old very comfortably

I do love this. The rest of our kitchen is quite simple and minimal so this brings an earthy touch of character – rustic meets the pared down lines of modern. My electrician drilled carefully through the brickwork at unobtrusive points to feed power through to the oven and the extractor. Of course you can’t channel wires in and plaster over exposed brick, so you have to plan things a bit more strategically. One day I might get around to stripping the bricks with some industrial cleaner, and varnishing them. But for the moment the patina of the house’s history is on display and somehow it doesn’t look out of place.

Kitchen character

Kitchen character

You might notice a little teaser in this photo of some other interesting ideas I’ve had whilst designing this kitchen. I’ll be back with more on this subject very soon!