Cooking up a stylish statement

PA Photo/Handout

PA Photo/Handout

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Kitchens are for eating, drinking and socialising, but the heart of the home also speaks volumes about our taste - as a glimpse into the kitchens of Prime Minister’s wife Samantha Cameron and celebrity chef Nigella Lawson recently revealed.

While there’s a homely, eclectic feel to the Downing Street space, with open shelves cluttered with pots and pans and a blackboard on the wall for family messages, Lawson’s made a full-on feminine statement with fuchsia-pink cabinets and drawers, in her new London home.

It just goes to show, the recipe for a perfect kitchen is highly personal. There’s no one right ‘look’ - what matters is that this space suits you and the way you want to live.

“There are several factors to take into account when choosing a kitchen,” advises Craig Burgess-Allen, UK manager for Rational kitchens. “Consider the style of the rest of your home, especially if you have an open-plan layout with spaces flowing into one another, as you want to avoid choosing a style which jars with the rest of your design scheme.

“Equally, don’t feel obliged in a period home to install a traditional kitchen. The priority is for a functional space, which is easy to work in and is visually appealing, and modern ranges can be hugely successful as a stunning, calm pared-back contrast, when the rest of the house is highly embellished with flourishes and detail.”

A kitchen can make or break a property deal, and it’s estimated that it can add up to 7% to the value of a home.

“Bear in mind that adventurous colour choices may look great in the showroom but can be hard to live with, and aren’t generally advisable if you’re considering selling a property,” Burgess-Allen points out. “If you feel colour-starved, play with colour in worktops and tiling.

“Always consider the natural light available, and opt for light reflecting surfaces if it’s limited. On a practical note, avoid glossy kitchen doors if you’re house proud and have small children, as they’ll show up every smudgy fingerprint!”