Rear kitchen extension: how we achieved our dream design

Whether you’re planning an ambitious project or thinking about maximising your home’s footprint, we love bringing you real renovations to get you inspired and show you just what’s possible whatever your budget.

For this month’s Been there done that feature, Sayu and Sharon Sinha, of @that_ealing_feeling on Instagram, shared the journey to creating their dream kitchen extension.

Picture a small box room with dated kitchen units and linoleum on the floor. When taking a look at the completed images, it is sometimes impossible to imagine what came before the newly created open-plan and incredibly bright kitchen-living-diner.

Curious to find out how it all came together? Then read on…

Grand kitchen extension with glazing
Sayu and Sharon’s grand kitchen extension in Ealing, west London

What was the space like before the renovation?

“Initially, we had a small box kitchen. It had limited views into the garden through the 1970s steel-framed windows, plus dated units and décor, which hadn’t been changed in the last 30 years. And we had peach-coloured lino on the floor.

“The windows and door were rusting. And there was a lower ceiling in this part of the house. We felt the property held tremendous potential. Plus, the garden was screaming to be seen through some glass doors at the rear.”

After carrying out a full back-to-brick renovation, we were conscious of what would work and yet still be practical enough for family living.

Tell us more about your brief for the rear kitchen extension…

“We love eating out and travelling and took inspiration from hotels, restaurants, and our surroundings. We created moodboards, went to design exhibitions, looked at lots of social media posts, and visited suppliers to get their advice and guidance on what would suit this age and type of property.”

Grand kitchen extension with dark cabinetry and large island
The new space measures 10m-wide x 7m-deep.
Blue cabinetry with brass handles and open shelving
The couple, who love to travel, took inspiration from hotels, restaurants and design exhibitions.

What does the rear kitchen extension look like?

“The new space measures 10m-wide x 7m-deep and includes a large open-plan kitchen-living-diner to the rear. The cabinetry is from Tom Howley. Now, this space allows one of us to cook, the other to watch TV, and another to do homework or chat with friends.”

The nature of the room lends itself to a relaxing environment, which gives everyone their own space while all being together at the same time.

“This is the most expensive part of the house, but it’s also the one where we spend all our time. In the summer, the space spills out onto the garden patio – our new Gozney pizza oven allows for some great summer parties and helped to add a couple of inches to the waistband!

“We have three large steel-framed doors, which bring the outside in and give the kitchen a greater sense of depth.”

Grand kitchen extension which hosts the kitchen-living-dining areas
“We designed the kitchen-living-diner so we could spend family time together during the evening.”
Grand kitchen extension with large steel-framed windows
The large steel-framed windows help connect the kitchen to the outdoor space.
Bright kitchen with tall windows and doors
The doors and windows are from Fabco Sanctuary.

How have you found the process?

“One thing we learnt from this experience is that there are always unforeseen problems, so planning for contingency time and some extra budget is always wise. Overall, we loved the process and would happily do it again.”

Sayu and Sharon’s words of advice

  • Start looking for suppliers long before you actually need them.
  • Make a note of how many cupboards and drawers you had previously to ensure that you include the same number or more in your new scheme.
  • Ask yourself what type of cooking you do and how often you prepare meals to help plan the layout.
  • Think of functionality. For example, we wanted to conceal our dishrack behind our fridge so you could not see the loaded-up rack on a day-to-day use of the kitchen. We also kept our bins to the side of the units so we wouldn’t have to empty out food in front of guests when entertaining.
  • If you are not particularly organised, stay away from glass cabinetry fronts.
  • Think carefully about the positioning and grouping of your lighting.
  • Know what you want. This will help avoid any unnecessary stress and last-minute decisions.

Enjoyed this feature? Make sure to grab your KBB magazine June issue in newsagents nationwide – on sale 4 May 2023.

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