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Kitchen transformations

Kitchen ideas from Food magazine

Resene paint colours highlight the dramatic new looks of these kitchen makeovers.

Elegance and whimsy

What was a dark and dated kitchen with a constrictive layout has been spun around, opened up and given a light whimsical look by kitchen designer Mal Corboy. The change is so radical, it’s hard to believe these before and after photos are of the same house.

The old kitchen was badly designed with the fridge in an odd position and a layout that meant only one person could easily work in it. The new layout is configured into two zones so that two cooks can function easily and the new island bench provides extra plating-up space, as well as extending into a casual dining table. Space for big appliances was included for the owners, who entertain a lot.

Tropical and realaxed kitchen.
A once dark and badly laid out kitchen is now fresh and whimsical.

But the biggest transformation is the look of the kitchen. A light, elegant and beautifully cohesive scheme includes tall cabinetry in Resene Kumutoto (the colour of which was inspired by cushions in the adjacent living room) that sit alongside under bench Resene White Thunder cabinets. The splashback and toe-kick are in Resene Whizz Bang, the walls are Resene Half White Pointer and the ceilings are Resene Quarter White Pointer.

One group of low cabinets is designed to look more like a contemporary sideboard and sits below deeply profiled oak shelves. A delicate palm motif printed onto the back of the glass above the splashback and behind the shelves adds character to the kitchen. A bench in Corian Rain Cloud waterfalls off one end, while the cluster of pendant lights are Marset Pleatbox from ECC.

Magical... moody

This kitchen (bottom middle image) was definitely past its fashion use-by date. The intense pink-plum colour on the front of the curved island bench and dark benchtops made the kitchen feel heavy and dark. Not only did it look dated, but there was also a lack of bench space and the storage and bench areas were broken up into small spaces.

Bright and airy kitchen

Designer Hayley Dryland of Bespoke on Khyber was asked to open up the kitchen so that when you walked into the living space, your eye would be drawn out to the stunning sea view. The owners also wanted the kitchen to cater for two cooks at one time and have good, organised storage solutions. A wine and beer fridge was also needed for entertaining.

The clients had seen Resene Bokara Grey in a Habitat magazine and loved the colour, so this was used on most of the cabinetry. This was contrasted with light benchtops, in Silestone Lagoon, and a splashback in Resene Rain Forest.

Using rimu on the overhead cabinets added another layer of interest to the kitchen and tied in with the joinery elsewhere in the house. The walls in the area are painted in Resene Tea.

Centering the hob on a single, large benchtop and moving the oven to one end gave a more spacious feel to the kitchen. The island bench was stretched out to measure 3200mm, the maximum for a single slab of engineered stone.

Large versatile drawers now store small appliances, pots and baking equipment. A whole drawer is dedicated to herbs and spices. A sliding-door pantry was installed in the corner of the kitchen, with a benchtop for the kettle and toaster; the microwave is discreetly hidden on a shelf. This is a great solution for corners in kitchens and offers a space to tuck things out of sight.

A “bar” is cleverly built into the island while a cupboard beside the wine and beer fridges houses glasses.

The pendant lights were found on a recent holiday to Melbourne and finish off the design perfectly.

Character kitchen
Left: A sympathetic kitchen renovation has retained the character of the 1920s cottage.  Right middle: Pink gives way for a much more sophisticated colour scheme.

Character reinvented

This 1920s cottage was mostly in its original condition with its whimsical brass porthole, original teacher’s blackboard and shellacked, match-lined walls. Keen to retain the existing character, the owners of 30 years wanted a lighter, more visitor-friendly kitchen with efficient storage and more bench space. Kitchen architect Toni Roberts did this by converting the laundry into a scullery, adding a kitchen island, relocating doorways for better flow and selectively painting some of the match-lining in Resene Moon Glow.

There are now three generous bench spaces. The stove “block” is rendered in dark tiles to heighten the low ceiling and imitates the vertical shapes of the retained fireplace and blackboard. A stainless steel bench extends from the stove, incorporating the sink and reaching into some existing shelving.

For the island bench and crockery cupboard tops, laminated bamboo was chosen for its warmth and unique grain, and to make these pieces of cabinetry appear more like furniture. Its characteristic layered construction is revealed at each edge with a double barcode-like texture to the long lengths and lineal grain to the other.

An unusually deep double-rebated door style was developed for the cupboards to reflect the French country feel the clients envisaged. They were then finished in Resene Half Parchment.

Keeping it clean

The Resene Kitchen & Bathroom range of paints is perfect for the kitchen. Resene SpaceCote Low Sheen Kitchen & Bathroom combines anti-bacterial silver protection and MoulDefender mould inhibitor, perfect for minimising unwanted nasties in kitchens, bathrooms and laundries. There is also Resene Lustacryl Kitchen & Bathroom for your trims and Resene SpaceCote Flat Kitchen & Bathroom for your ceiling. These paints are available in a wide range of popular Resene colours.

Beat the bugs

Control crawling and flying insects with Bug Juice, new in store at Resene (New Zealand only). Bug Juice is a contact pesticide, which is simply mixed into your Resene paint. Bug Juice will not affect the paint and is odourless. The effect lasts for up to four years depending on where it is applied. Bug Juice won’t harm pets or birds. Try Bug Juice on decks, window surrounds and sills, doorways and joinery, skirting boards, exterior doors, floors, walls and anywhere bugs might enter your home.


Photographs Kallan McLeod

Kitchen Decorating Ideas
View more kitchen decorating ideas from Food magazine in the Resene kitchen inspiration gallery.

More ideas

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