Monday, 30 May 2011

Kitchen Makeover - Part 5 - It's finished - well almost!!!

Right before I tell you the story behind our "new" kitchen I'll show you the photo's first...

My electric oven and gas hob, we only have electric here so we have a gas bottle for the hob, which is great as we will still be able to have a cup of tea even when we have a power cut.
My other electric oven, microwave, my cupboard to hide the ironing board and hoover (no excuse for leaving them out now!) and a new door to hide the ginormous electric boiler.

Ginormous boiler hiding inside it's new home - the door still needs painting I'm not sure whether to paint it off white or a pale green.

My new shiny red kettle

My second sink (yes I have two sinks!!!)

The plate rack and wine rack
The view from the other end of the kitchen
This empty space now houses a large ikea desk for the computer and a magistrates chair from the local courts that I got off ebay for Paul

The finished(ish) orangery with its new dresser unit. The table and chairs which we bought off ebay a couple of years ago match the units fabulously and the green chesterfield and armchair (another ebay purchase - can you see a theme here!!)

Just need some nice plates and a few bottles of wine to display
A very shiny floor

The back door with its large coir mat for all our muddy shoes and boots, the tongue and groove still needs painting (story of my life) and we need some big hooks for our coats.

The cupboard to hide the fuse board and all the electrics

The main sink, dishwasher, washing machine and fridge freezer

I can tell you that the sides are never this clean and tidy now!!!
So what do you think? we're really pleased with how it's turned out, now shall I let you into a little secret...
Our new kitchen isn't really new at all we bought it off ebay, it's a Mark Wilkinson solid Maple kitchen with black granite work surfaces and Gaggenau appliances. When we started looking at new kitchens the prices started running away with themselves especially as the room is quite large and we would never have been able to buy a Mark Wilkinson kitchen new (i believe they average about £60,000  - ours cost a fraction of that) so we looked on ebay and found this kitchen. I spent many nights working out if it would fit and we spent one afternoon travelling up to London (the kitchen was in a fabulous house in a private mews next to Lord's Cricket ground) to have a look at the kitchen take measurements and photos we then agreed a price and that was it - sold!!!
Luckily their carpenter was taking the kitchen apart and labelled everything for us and the only hair raising problem during its removal was that the granite might not come off but a quick phone call from the seller to a granite company and they came out and took the granite off in a flash.
Next we organised a removal company to collect the kitchen for us, an easy job the two boys at the removal company were told you'll be finished by 3pm!!! They arrived at the house in London at 10am and started packing up the van everything went well until they needed remove the fridge freezer, now the kitchen was in a basement and the only staircase out to the van was the metal external one luckily the builders helped our guys get the fridge freezer up the stairs along with the heavy pieces of granite. They finally arrived at our house in Essex at 10pm unloaded everything into the orangery and left at midnight. My plans for arranging everything in groups depending on where they were going in our kitchen went out of the window!!!
So everything was now nicely! stored in our orangery and that's where it stayed from November to January you couldn't even get into the room from either door as it was completely jam packed with units!!!
How did you know it was all going to fit I hear you ask!!!
Well there was a lot of planning and drawing and with the help of our builder Ben we worked out where everything could go and we managed to use everything other then three units. We used a local company to come and measure the granite and it worked out that we only needed a few cuts and a little polishing and it all fitted perfectly.
My only nightmare during the whole process was a dream that I had that the second sink unit (this was an island unit originally with the chopping board at the back of it) would stick out too far into the room and there wouldn't be enough room to pass if someone was standing at the sink. I woke up in cold sweat especially as all the plumbing work was already in and couldn't be moved!!! But everything was fine and there was plenty of room.
We were even able to use two wall cupboards with the backs taken off to hide all the fuse boards and electric metres.
The dresser units in the orangery is also part of the same kitchen and fits perfectly on our back wall and houses all the kids games etc. 

Now this way of buying a kitchen isn't for everyone and definitely isn't for the faint hearted but would we do it again - YES! without a shadow of a doubt we have even found a company called The Used Kitchen Company even we can't find one on ebay!!!
We still have lots of little things to finish off, like painting, curtains and the best bit buying bits and bobs for our new kitchen but we love having a lovely space to cook, eat and enjoy time as a family which is definitely what we can do now...
Here are just a few bits that we have bought so far...
So come on what's been your best buy on ebay!!!

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  1. wow, tracy, thats wonderful. and you may even find that the original kitchen was designed by mo (of mornieg jewellery), who was/is a designer for mark wilkinson. (the company has now been taken over, its still made in devizes, but by a different outfit, but mo still works and designs for mark wilkinson himself).
    you certainly put in a great deal of hard work and I'm sure you are now so proud of your beautiful kitchen. well done,
    joy x x

  2. Wow, that looks amazing, will look into used kitchens I think. We are thinking of moving, but don't fancy selling our place with the kitchen as it is, it needs something doing to it! Thanks for sharing :)

  3. It looks fantastic and well worth all the work. Not sure what my best ebay buy was - there have been so many!

  4. That's amazing to get a full kitchen off Ebay, it looks great!

  5. WOW, that's absolutely gorgeous bet you're proud as punch. I can't believe somebody would sell a kitchen as wonderful as that, I'd keep it forever. The big question is what were they reoplacing it with??? Lucey x ( I tried to leave you comments on your previous kitchen posts but blogger was playing up!!!)

  6. It looks really beautiful! You guys did a great job!


I would love to hear your thoughts and comments on my blog and I will try to answer as many as I can. thanks Tracy

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