Colin Jackson’s Shaun Davies Home Solutions Kitchen

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Shaun Davies, owner of family run business Shaun Davies Home Solutions was given the task of designing a kitchen for Welsh national treasure, Colin Jackson CBE. After changing the location of the kitchen, Colin now has a stunning kitchen area with patio doors that open to show off the views of Cardiff bay.

Q. What was the brief from Colin?

Shaun: The first question from Colin was “Can you build my kitchen before Christmas?” obviously the answer was yes! When this question is asked in October understandably we needed to move quickly. Colin admitted “tongue in cheek” he was having a mid-life crisis and instead of throwing himself off a mountain he chose to have a new kitchen (thankfully!). Colin’s brief was relatively simple, in terms of aesthetics, he didn’t want any vibrant or “on trend” colours but equally didn’t want it to look sterile.

It’s also key to understand how my clients will use their kitchen, Colin loves to entertain when he’s home and equally loves to cook. In his current kitchen Colin felt hidden away so he required an open area that had considered functional storage, defined areas, adequate worktop space & informal seating.

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Q. How did you set about answering the brief?

Shaun: Well, firstly Colin was very open & honest about his likes, dislikes & budget to some degree. He even had a few magazine snap shots that he was keen to incorporate if feasible. This feedback/information makes life so much easier for a designer as we can concentrate our efforts on finding solutions as opposed to second guessing the brief.

Designer names were not important to Colin, products that had real purpose & good build quality & features were more the order of the day. However, a plush finish with a few “bells & whistles” were welcome (providing they were subtle/tasteful) and what could be more subtle than lavish detail on the often-ignored cabinet/drawer interiors. Walnut, glass, & anti-fingerprint stainless steel were used almost exclusively throughout and I think it’s fair to say Colin was quite overwhelmed with the beauty and functionality of these products.

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In general, the decision to go for such a neutral colour palette was exactly right. When I first walked into what was then the front reception room, I was immediately taken aback by the stunning views across the channel. What I didn’t want was for the kitchen to detract from those views or fight for attention.

The galley style kitchen layout created really does drawer your eyes towards the wonderful perspective ahead now while the central island provides all the necessary functionality required in an open plan design, i.e. storage, prep space, a cooking zone & seating. We even managed to tie in a bespoke tiered sink area that can be used either front or side on. This was situated at a perspective that could not be seen until you effectively walked around the island, a hidden treasure to be found only after admiring the views.

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Q. What makes it a success?

Colin: I love the space; its practical, attractive, social, inspiring and it ticks all the boxes! It also suits my life, when I get back home it is a nice place to be and that is priceless. There is something special about creating a communal area that is loved and adored and that feeling doesn’t just stop at what you can see. When my friends see my new kitchen they are wowed by it and then when I open my kitchen drawers the reaction I get is great, I upgraded to stainless steel and glass drawers with wooden inserts and that was the best choice on reflection. They are practical and look good and fit in better with my kitchen. I asked Shaun to show me what is available and decided if I needed it, I didn’t want fancy kit that you can’t use. My friends now have drawer envy, which must mean I am on to a winning thing for someone to comment on the inside. I love the internal spice racks and SPACE TOWER’s and having a boiling hot water tap makes a huge difference. I am proud this is my kitchen!

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Shaun: It’s the small details that make all the difference, we had a table made from the same glass as the splashback and added a feature tap base (sat on a beautiful walnut sink stand) that matched the main quartz works surfaces The seating area by the window was ‘on and off’ throughout the process, Colin admitted he had no vision for this area (other than the trusted potted plant), luckily he trusted me and now this area feels a part of the kitchen and even encompasses some extra storage.

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Q. What is your best advice for someone who may be planning a new kitchen?

Colin: My architect told me once that a good designer costs as much as a bad designer so you might as well go for the good one. Find a kitchen designer you can trust, and who trusts you, and they will provide good ideas and the knowledge and experience that can change your life forever.

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Products used:

  • Furniture designed and supplied by Shaun Davies Home Solutions including Kitchen Stori doors (Strada Gloss White)
  • Appliances by Neff, CDA, Faber, Caple
  • Tap by Franke
  • Storage solutions by Blum including SPACE TOWER and AMBIA-LINE

 

Watch Welsh Bites at 8pm tonight (10/04) on ITV Wales to see Colin’s new kitchen in action. Click here to find out more.

 

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