Summerville Painted Kitchen – By Tom Howley


The story: This kitchen was part of a bigger restoration project, Little Naish. Empty for almost a quarter of a century, the gothic tower cottage needed more than a little repair work.

The designer: Tom Howley (


Designer Q&A:

Q) What was the brief from the client?

The client wanted a traditional kitchen that would marry sympathetically with the history of the original building and would also become a feature of their modern extension. They wanted to create a space that would work all year round and that would really make the most of the six-acre walled gardens that the property sits within.




Q) How did you set about answering that brief?

The client was very specific about what they wanted from their new kitchen, predominantly a feeling of ‘bringing the outdoors in’. We worked very closely with the client on the design of their new-build extension to ensure that the kitchen exceeded their every expectation. It was clear from the start that an island was required to create a focus in the room and space for the family to join together. We knew that the family were going to use the room as a kitchen, living and dining area, so the key to its success was to marry all those spaces together as one.


Q) Which products did you use and why?

Our Summerville range met the client’s brief perfectly – a traditional shaker style but with beautiful curved detailing that softens the overall look. The kitchen is painted in our own bespoke paint colour called Meadowsweet, a light and neutral shade that emphasises the natural light via the floor-to-ceiling windows. For the appliances, the client was keen to attain a streamlined look. We designed the kitchen to feel very clean and symmetrical so the Miele built-in models helped us achieve this without compromising on the overall design.


Q) What elements do you think make the scheme so successful?

After carefully considering the client’s brief, there are a few key elements of this kitchen that make it so successful. Having the island positioned centrally in the room creates the focal point the client requested. It’s also worth noting the position of the sink on the island, meaning that washing the dishes or making a hot drink has become a total pleasure for the clients who can now overlook their beautiful gardens.


Q) Any advice for someone who may be planning a new kitchen?

To create a truly sociable cooking environment, add seating to an island or peninsular unit – even if it’s just two or three seats to create an area that children and friends will gravitate towards when entering the room.


The details:

Cabinetry and worktops by Tom Howley,

All appliances by Miele,

Hayley loves: the way this kitchen blends the old with the new, perfectly in keeping with its surroundings

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About Hayley Gilbert

Hayley Gilbert is a freelance interiors journalist with 20 years’ experience in the industry. Specialising in all things kitchens, Hayley has contributed to a wide range of consumer titles such as Beautiful Kitchens, EKBB, KBB, Grand Designs, House Beautiful and Ideal Home, as well as national newspapers including The Sunday Times.... @HaylGilbert /

  Email:  Hayley Gilbert


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