Kitchen transformation


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I don’t know if you’ve bought a new build and had to make your choices! (I use this word lightly as the choices are limited) but this is really difficult and challenging. From what I’ve seen on Instagram there are other home builders that do offer more choice than David Wilson. Maybe I’m not their typical customer but I just couldn’t find anything I liked as I wanted a more traditional feel kitchen. I really wanted the shaker style but this was part of the £7500 upgrade and I felt the handles didn’t match the look of the kitchen that I wanted. We weren’t prepared to spend the extra money for pretty much just doors, a wine fridge and some kick board lights, I still wouldn’t have had the kitchen I wanted and would have had to spend more money putting it right.


These were the handles on the shaker style doors  and I wanted cup handles and small knobs, all the doors were pre-drilled so I wouldn’t have been able to change them (Image from Pinterest)

We were lucky enough to benefit from Stamp duty being abolished for first time buyers after we had exchanged. This had been our incentive, we managed to get it moved to our kitchen upgrade which gave us a fully built in kitchen and additional units in the utility room. As this was something we already had in our budget we now had some extra money to spend elsewhere.

After lots of deliberation we decided to go for the Plaza porcelain kitchen doors from Symphony, these are a matt effect with a slight wood grain. I knew I wanted to change the handles from the off and tile (we asked for the splash back to be left off to do this). The worktop was my hardest decision, all I wanted was a natural looking light oak worktop but this didn’t exist! We went for Colmar oak, I was so worried it would look orange. This was the kitchen on completion day, it’s nice but pretty basic and not very me!

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My first job was the handles, I’d seen a kitchen in Ikea with black handles and accents and really liked the way it looked. I’d also seen a handle I liked in the Symphony gallery brochure, after lots of trawling the internet trying to find the name of the handle I tracked it down. It’s called Osaka and I was able to see it in John Lewis and Jewsons kitchens, however this is what I was quoted; The HPK729 – Osaka handles are priced at £11.16 per handle including VAT. These are available in the 160mm. I needed 17 this would have been £189.72! So my next task was to find them cheaper.

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I also had to find a handle that measured the same distance between the holes previously drilled which in the case was 160mm, my thought process was that I would definitely find something from the Symphony range (who David Wilson use). I managed to find them on a website called locks online for £5.12 each so I ordered 16 (I already had one) at a total of £112.88 including vat and delivery. Changing them over was easy and took about 30 minutes and instantly transformed the way the kitchen looked.

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The next task was the tiling, I wanted to create a more rustic feel with the tiles and texture on the wall. I’d found the perfect tile and the perfect colour but again it was too expensive! (okay so I do have the ability of picking the most expensive thing on the shelf) so off I went to find something more within our price range. I’d decided on a crackle glaze tile and wanted it laid in a brick pattern, I had to find an off white tile as our kitchen cabinets were an off white too. I plumped for a mid grey grout for a more subtle effect and found someone on Facebook who had great reviews and feedback to do it. The tile we chose was this one from Tiles Direct .

F74349A7-BAF9-4AD5-9076-48D29C856A95It took about a day to do and I had already decided that I wanted to go to the ceiling on the back wall. I was so pleased with the end result and couldn’t believe what a difference it made to the kitchen. It cost us around £350 all in and was worth every penny.

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Our flooring which I’ve talked about previously, Polyflor Camaro 2251 Cambridge Parquet worked well with all our choices. My worktop didn’t look orange and matched with our flooring perfectly.

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I wanted to add a table and a sofa in this room to make it more of a family room rather than a kitchen/diner. I struggled deciding on a table in here as I wasn’t keen immediately on a farmhouse style but my husband was. I found a company called Made In The Cellar who make bespoke furniture and I was sold, we ordered a 5ft table and matching bench from them. I also really wanted Windsor style chairs and found them from a company called Countrylife Furniture .  Both companies used Farrow and Ball paint so I had them painted in strong white, a close colour to the tiles and cabinet doors. Again so pleased with the results and they make the room, I love having a table that I don’t need to be precious with; a real kitchen table that’s the hub of our home.

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Our sofa was one of the last things we added, mainly because we couldn’t find anything small enough to fit the space without dominating the room. We chose this one Next Carter petite sofa for its size, colour and durability. So far it’s been brilliant and extremely resilient to our three year old boy. I added a jute rug from IKEA and purchased another cushion the same as the ones in the lounge to pull the theme through the ground floor, this area is becoming a firm favourite in our home.

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I found some shelves I liked from Garden Trading and on the off chance decided to pop to kilver Court where there is a Garden Trading outlet store, to my amazement they had the exact shelves I wanted heavily discounted. We bought two small ones and one large one. I wanted somewhere to display my Le Creuset as well as being practical open shelving.

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I love this mirror my husband bought me for Mother’s Day from Garden Trading. It’s a real focal point in the kitchen.

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I already had some blue/grey linen curtains from John Lewis that I put up on the French doors and managed to find a Roman blind the exact same colour from their Croft Collection for the window over the sink. We had already ordered our shutters and had decided not to do the window above the sink as it would block out too much light. I wanted to pull the blue/grey through the ground floor and did this through matching the sofa in the lounge to the curtains and blind in the kitchen.

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living room

The lights, we payed extra to have six down lighters in the kitchen area and then purchased a black industrial feel pendant from IKEA.I then later purchased the small clip on lamp from the same range to go on the shelf above the sofa. We also put the off white version in the hall and landing to create some continuity.


So this is pretty much how I transformed our new build kitchen, we love it and are so pleased with the results. We are beginning to start to think about painting soon which will  make it feel more cosy, I definitely can’t wait for the recommended four seasons before we start to add some colour. We are slowly adding character to our new home and making it feel more homely.

Thank you for reading and I hope you can take away some ideas or inspiration. Links to products throughout.

All text and images are copyright Maison des Lesage unless stated and opinions are my own.

2 thoughts on “Kitchen transformation

  1. Melissa says:

    I love the pictures of your house and kitchen, and you’re taste is exactly the same as mine! we have just reserved our new build and we were really worried our style wouldnt work as we are also probably alot older than most first time buyers the show houses are very glitzy and modern which is so not me! After seeing your beautiful home I am excited to get in and put our stamp on it now. Regards Mel xx
    P.s Might have to copy your parquet always been my dream to have a house with it!


    • Melissa Lesage says:

      So nice to hear and thank you for you lovely comments. I felt exactly the same way as you do, we bought our house based on location and schools and had the same concerns about a new build. I didn’t want a shiny, glossy show home either. We didn’t go for any of the floor choices and did all our flooring ourselves, we love our floor and I can’t recommend it enough. I always wanted parquet flooring and shutters and I’ve managed both. Good luck in your venture and how funny we share the same name! If you don’t already follow me on Instagram please do so and I’ll be happy to answer any questions you have,
      Kindest regards


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