Archive for kitchen

Of collapses and corners.

Posted in Derelict house, Georgian houses, Inspiration, kitchen, Renovation with tags , , , on November 3, 2011 by pimpmybricks

We’ve been in a floundering pool here, plunging up and down between hope and despair –  Mr Pimp’s salt mine having gone suddenly, shockingly and spectacularly belly up last week.  No warning, no forecast, no prognostications of doom. One minute the company was fine, the next it was gone. One minute we were trotting along, the next we were two cartoon people, the ground gone beneath our feet, frantically pedaling thin air. A thing of perception and rumour, the corporate world.  No more, really, than a house of cards.

The phones between here and there have been ringing red hot. First there was no hope, then there was some, then none again, then a tad, a sliver, a wraith.  Then none whatsoever, for ever, without hindrance or let up.  In the end the receivers were called in and that seemed so final we expected him back any minute, home again, home again, jiggedy jig.  Now he’s staying there a month.  Then, who knows – there are rumours this morning (more rumours!) that someone might buy this dead company, wind it up and set it skittering across the table top again.

So where does (what’s left of) my mind go for solace in the middle of all this lunacy?  Why, to sculleries of course!  Not sculleries as they have become in modern parlance – pantries, or laundries, or even just kitchens by another name – but those shadowed shivery hidey holes where you stuff your scullery maid or channel your own, buried under mountains of greasy pans and potato peelings and plucked feathers.  Me,  I am an inconvenient mix of the house-proud and the slattern, and love the idea of a sequestered ante-chamber where grungy goings-on can poked away.

In my trawlings I found these, and felt that funny house-love/longing/lust/acquisitiveness.  It’s those half-glassed walls that do it for me.  Secret and not secret at the same time.  Revealed and enclosed…this begins to sound a bit kinkay.

This is Plain English’s Osea Kitchen (though theirs looks to be more of a laundry.  Socks – stylists own):

And this is a house on the market in London: I am trying to decide how it would actually, practically work, to have to go into another room to wash pots etc.  Whether it would be practical, really, when it came down to it.  And whether I could do it without losing my beloved stone arch as entrance into the kitchen, complete with steel and glass pivoting door.  Picture of which I would post but for the fact that my new Mac had a fit of conniptions last night and is now withholding pictures.  It never raineth but it poureth.  Time for a stiff gin and a lie down.


Posted in Inspiration, kitchen, Renovation, Uncategorized with tags , , on April 16, 2011 by pimpmybricks

We’re in a rather dreary phase at the moment, with nothing much happening on the house.  Or rather, that which is happening is happening in the architect’s office and it seems to be crawling along somewhat slowly to me.  Because the house is heritage listed, the government has very kindly drawn up a 40-odd page Conservation Management Plan which has to be gone through with many fine-toothed combs.  Some of it makes sense – we are asked to repair subsidence, and floors with holes in them,  for instance.  Other stipulations stretch the credulity a little – we’re asked to place sheets of perspex in front of the fireplaces in case, silly us, we’re tempted to use them.  And to replace non-existent ceilings with lathe and plaster, no less.  Well yes, of course.

So rather stay on the points and sub-points of the CMP, my mind has wandered off to kitchens, as minds will.  Unruly thingses, mindses.

fromLes Ailments

At the moment the kitchen (as it is in my mind) is two rooms separated by a termite-ridden wooden partition which, when the concrete slab is removed, will stop about six inches short of the floor.  My hope is that Mssrs the Government will not insist on the wall being replaced or repaired, grandfather’s axeishly.  I mentioned this idea to one architect, who did a great deal of tooth sucking and then said “yes, well, of course the historical significance of the wall will have to be established”.  Evidently, nothing can be taken for granted.  Whether we’ll be allowed indoor bathrooms is marginally debatable – there is a vein of zealotry which runs through certain of the heritage individuals which would have us all pee in a bucket in the un-garden.

But anyway.

In a somewhat lumpy, dis-jointed panorama, the present kitchen goes something like this:

then panning seamlessly to the left, there is this:

kitchen east wall

and this is the offending partition which, in theory, will be summarily removed without right of petition:

On the other side of said partition there is this smaller, cellarish room.  Not so big but positively heaving with sandstone all waiting for the tap of my trusty scraper:

 The architect has proposed this as a pantry.  I’m all in favour of pantries, but frankly we don’t have that many jars of jam, so I counter-propose the bit beyond the arch at the end as pantry and wine cellar and the rest as kitchen.  That way,  this other arch will be the entry into the kitchen.  Otherwise it will be lost, compromised by the small shanty town of partitions and flush doors.  And I do like the idea of lining up the arches:

Quite what the kitchen will look like is still unclear.  In our present house the kitchen is part of a large, open-plan room and is therefore white and to some extent deliberately invisible. The new kitchen will be a discrete room, more or less, and can therefore be more kitcheny, more visible.

Victor Gabriel Gilbert

 The architect is keen on sleek and modern, and it could look good with the sandstone, but I’m finding myself attracted to the unfitted at the moment.

Langton Hall 1830s

This is a house in Brighton, and I have no idea whose it is or where I got it from, but I like it:


 What currently flutters my flag is Plain English’s Osea. The fact that they only sell within the EU and their prices start at the cost of a small sports car (of which I am devilish fond) – all that is a mere bagatelle. 

Plain English Osea