My Kitchen Renovations Part One – The Design

We’re in full on building work mode at the flat now but I’d like to think we’re a third of the way through. So here’s a quick update on where we’re at now.

We’ve spent the last week taking tiles of the wall (something this YouTube video would have you believing is easy and takes just a couple of taps of a hammer – this is a lie) and pulling out the old kitchen.

We’re not the best DIY’ers, we haven’t got very long until we need to move in and we just don’t have the time  after work to get everything sorted, so we’ve accepted that we’re going to have to get people in to do the really big project for us – the Bathroom, which I’ll update on later.

kitchen now

Sorry for the blurry iPhone photo! I suddenly realised we should take ‘Before’ photos just as we were about to start taking it apart

The kitchen [above] and other decorating bits we’re going to tackle ourselves. We hadn’t originally planned to do much in the kitchen, maybe paint the cabinet doors, put in a new sink (the plastic one currently there is ingrained in dirt probably original to the house) and not much more.

But the more we looked at it, the more we saw the problems — the hob is original to the house from 1988(?!!), the cupboard doors have already been replaced once and left huge holes in the carcasses, there’s no room for a double height fridge freezer and the vinyl floor tiles are all peeling up.

This all led to us going to IKEA and buying a kitchen on a whim. I say on a whim, we made the decision without the normal level of research I require into best brands/ prices and a spreadsheet of budgets yes, but once the decision was made it took a full week for me to work out what we wanted.


Above: Sarah Brown’s gorgeous grey and white kitchen, from

After taking one look at my Pinterest board of ideological kitchens I realised I clearly have a thing for white, black and grey… Our flat is too small, the ceilings too low and the windows too narrow for a black kitchen to look anything other than a cave, so I decided to stick with grey and white.

I’d already decided I wanted gloss cabinets, to help bounce some light around the small room so, taking inspiration from Sarah Brown (a blogger who’s house I lust after), and using my new favourite toy – the IKEA 3D Kitchen planner, I designed my new kitchen:

The 3D planner made my life easy – although it’s quite buggy, and annoying when you can clearly see the measurements show room for a cupboard, but it won’t allow you to put one in there!

As you can see, we’ve kept it as a galley style, as we think that’s the most efficient way, and moved the wall cabinets to the opposite wall. Although after a week of removing tiles and taking half the plasterboard with them, we’ve realised that wall is only made of two sheets of plasterboard with very little else holding it up, fingers crossed we can find a way to put them up there!

The most exciting part of this is the half size dishwasher. Hosting dinner parties is one of our favourite things to do (there’s not much else to do in Didcot) but the washing up is such a pain. This dishwasher, along with our new supersized Domsjo sink is going to change everything.

The kitchen arrives tomorrow, so fingers crossed it’s as easy to put in as we’ve been told!


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