The Chelsea Kitchen by The Wood Works


The designer: Richard Delane, Creative Director at The Wood Works (

The story: The Chelsea Kitchen has been designed and fitted for a new-build developer (Searchfield Homes) as part of a development of seven houses. The Wood Works is a bespoke kitchen manufacturer based in Hertfordshire, with over 30 years’ experience under their belt and their own factory that produces all of their unique designs.

The Wood Works

Designer Q&A:

Q) What was your brief from the client?

The client wanted a kitchen that would fit into the style of property, a contemporary take on a period home. Also, we had to ensure it did not look out of place in a £1.3m+ house and it also had to have the wow factor for potential buyers, as it showed the developer had considered the aesthetics and wanted to assure buyers that this kitchen was bespoke to their home.

Q) How did you set about answering that brief?

The brief centred around creating a modern version of a traditional kitchen. After various conversations it was decided that a front-framed Shaker kitchen would offer the traditional elements, while modern appliances and an on-trend colour palette would appeal to potential buyers while making sure the final kitchen was in-keeping with the style of the property. The finished design very much had to feel bespoke, expensive and considered.

The Wood Works

Q) Which products did you use and why?

Front-framed cabinetry was chosen, as it delivered a higher-end finish that was painted in our factory using Little Greene and Farrow and Ball paints to deliver a quality product.

Cabinet carcass internals were constructed from oak veneer whilst the drawer boxes were solid oak. The frames were made using tulipwood with an MDF painted centre panel, all of which was to give a handmade, traditional feel.

Appliances were from Siemens and included a dishwasher, fridge freezer and oven and provided the developer with a reputable name of which to advertise in the particulars.

Caesarstone quartz was chosen for the worktop, with focus given to matching the Carrara vein to the colours in the rest of the kitchen.

Q) Was there any building/renovation work involved?

It was a new-build home. As is often the case, timescales overran but we were able to accommodate changes in timelines, while making sure that the kitchen was still delivered on time (in record time in fact!) and to the same standard expected from the company. In total, seven kitchens were fitted based on the Chelsea design.

The Wood Works

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

What works for this kitchen is the marriage between classic and modern styles, combining beautiful Shaker cabinetry with a dramatic colour palette.

We also looked to not take over the room with the kitchen. The room needed to function as a kitchen, living and dining room, with the kitchen standing out but also blending in to the rest of the room. Its subtle features, such as the open shelving and colours, help it to work in the larger scheme.

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

A pretty obvious one, but do your homework and not just on what you’d like your kitchen to look like. There is no harm in visiting a number of different showrooms and taking time to have a look and feel of their products. You’ll get an idea for quality and the kind of designs they are producing. You can also see in the flesh features that you like and what you hadn’t considered but that would work for you.

The details:

Appliances by Siemens,

Paint by Little Greene and Farrow & Ball, and

Worktops by Caesarstone,

Sink and taps by Franke,

Hayley loves: the use of light and dark colours to create contrast while giving the room an on-trend sophisticated feel.

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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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