Now you see it, now you don’t…
We’re always seeing new trends creeping into the kitchen. One month it’s barely-there neutral shades for cabinetry; the next it’s primed and painted doors in bold plum and petrol blue. Whatever colour is currently ‘in’ though, there’s one theme that remains constant and that’s a sleek, clutter-free look, where savvy storage solutions keep everyday essentials such as spices, utensils, larder items and even small appliances under wraps.
I find it much easier to work in a kitchen where everything has its place and that’s certainly something Blum knows a lot about. Their Dynamic Space concept is the ultimate guide to making your kitchen run smoothly – from creating the simplest workflow to maximising space and incorporating quality fixtures and fittings, it’s an ergonomic idea that every kitchen should follow. Check it out for yourself at www.blum.com.
With this in mind, I was really excited at the prospect of a new wave of designs doing the rounds – concealed kitchens. Some incorporate sliding or pocket doors to hide appliances from view; others feature doors that open to reveal a drinks station or breakfast cupboard, while for those who prefer to keep their entire kitchen under wraps, there are some designs that close off the cook zone completely – ideal for a small yet open-plan space.
Here are my favourite ‘hidden’ gems…
1) This kitchen by Holloways of Ludlow lies behind a beautiful set of classic-style concertina doors, which neatly fold away to reveal a contemporary kitchen tucked into a small alcove. You can view this for yourself at the new bespoke kitchen showroom at 113 Shepherds Bush Road, London W6 7LP (www.hollowayskitchens.com).
2) Also from Holloways is this spectacular kitchen, where sliding doors and panels in dark stained solid walnut and mirrored glass house a Gaggenau oven, steam oven and warming drawer as well as concealing a wide pull-out larder, large integrated Gaggenau fridge and a breakfast cupboard with solid walnut worktop, stainless steel splashback and built-in microwave.
3) I love the idea of completely closing off crockery, pots and pans from view so Neil Lerner’s new coplanar larder cupboard is just the thing. With smoothly running sliding doors, it can be used for all sorts of kitchen kit and there are no hinges or outward opening doors, so it really does offer a seamless finish without intruding onto valuable floor space. The Tobacco Oak finish would also provide a lovely contrast against high-gloss white cabinets. (www.neillerner.com).
4) If parties are your thing then who could resist having their very own drinks station neatly slotted at the end of the kitchen and instantly concealed with ‘slide and hide’ doors? Designed by Roundhouse as part of a bespoke Metro kitchen, it incorporates Metallic Hammered Silver base cabinets, a Carrara marble worktop and splashback and cherrywood wine rack. (www.roundhousedesign.com).
5) Appliances can also be completely concealed from view. When you want to be able to cook at your island but you don’t want the hob and extractor to detract from the design or obscure your view over the rest of the room (especially when chatting to guests while you cook), consider a flush-fit, frameless induction hob and downdraft extractor, which pops up at the touch of a button when needed then slides effortlessly back into the worktop after use. These two are by De Dietrich (www.dedietrich.co.uk) and are shown as part of a Wilson Fink kitchen. Check out the pop-up plug socket, too (www.wilsonfink.co.uk).
Hayley Gilbert, interiors writer