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  Quote Toots Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: New Kitchen
    Posted: 04 Feb 2014 at 16:33
We knew when we moved in, that we would need a new kitchen. We will have been here a year on the last day of February and, as we are no longer financially responsible for my mum, we can go ahead and get the kitchen.
We went to B&Q, sat down with some girl and she said 'Bring the measurements in and we will cost it out for you. Now, I don't know about you, but to us, buying a kitchen and having it fitted by the firm you bought it from includes them measuring up. If you do it yourself, and are only 1/8 of an inch out, the kitchen won't fit and it will be your fault and you have no 'come back'  i asked if they did a home visit  to measure up and she said 'I expect someone could come'. For all we knew, it could have been someone off the tills. So we said 'No thanks' and went to Wicks.
Much better service. We are having a home visit next Tuesday, it will take 2 hours. Then we go the following Saturday. To see the computer generated thingie of our kitchen with the designs we have chosen and from that, we can decide which one we want. So far we have chosen 2. But a few more days browsing left.
They gave us  phone numbers of  several folk who have had fitted kitchens from Wicks we saw one this afternoon and it was lovely. The people next door to us had a B&Q bathroom and are still trying to get it fixed after the mess the installer made. Lucky escape I think
No firm can be 100% successful every time because you can't please everyone and no doubt Wicks have had dissatisfied customers but we feel safer with Wicks than B&Q

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  Quote deborah31 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Feb 2014 at 20:13
We had Wicks fitted our ensuite out!!! charged us a fortune!!!! Great job, but about 10k in total!!!!!fitting it cost 3X's as much as the contents!!!!!!
Finally succeeded in getting some money back off them.
It took about 3 months wait to get the shower base (left handed walk in organic) everything was out of stock.
Then the work top was lost/didn't turn up!!
Went out and bought quite an expensive one in the end (got a cut-off so cheaper)- that stuff like granite
Fitters left the skip on my drive for 3 weeks overflowing (which I had to pay for!! as the man wouldn't leave without payment)
so I would buy from them again, but wouldn't use these fitters!! 3 weeks to finish the en-suite, and was in summer so clocked off every day at 3pm to go surfing!!!!!!
 
edit
computer drawing looked good, but not done by a professional really, we can't open our door fully!!!! hits the shower base.
Also fitted ceiling lights above cupboards!!! big joke, luckily i ended up managing them and got the electrician back to move the ceiling spotlights, where they weren't highligthing a cupboard top!!!!!
recomendation, do your own measuring!!!!!! buy extra fittings elsewhere, ie better standard worktops etc....makes a huge difference,
wish I'd bought a smaller sink too than the one recommended sticks out far too much. 
use your own plumber/tiler will save you a fortune in the end!
I've fitted out several bathrooms/kitchens in the past, these were by far the worst, and most expensive!! - but previously I've always used tradesmen locally i knew, and had confidence with. 3 men over 3 weeks- far too slow, for small ensuite, they milked it!
 


Edited by deborah31 - 04 Feb 2014 at 21:12
Loose Lips, Sink Ships !!   or as they say in Jamaice, 'Mouth open, Story fly out!'
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  Quote Toots Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Feb 2014 at 01:49
Nice to here something encouraging Debs. Thanks for posting
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  Quote deborah31 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Feb 2014 at 10:26
I've just had all my kitchen tiles taken off too, and glass splashbacks fitted, that firm were really good.
Had another company re-spray my laundry doors (were washed oak), that was great as well , saved changing the doors, changed all the handles too to modern.
Just had all my wooden work tops laquered, wooden tops look great, but wouldn't have them by choice (in with the house we bought)
Just had a tiler, re-tile my cloak room, very good too.
Always having work done here, and renovated a property gutted, from top to bottom when imoved here in 2009, so pretty much jobs always on the go here!!!!
Have now experienced a range of workmen in most things.
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  Quote MargiABC Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Feb 2014 at 15:32
Good luck with the new kitchen Toots. I love looking at kitchen designs for the latest for cupboards etc.

Our kitchen is not new anymore, as we had it installed 17 years ago. Quite expensive at the time as we had a wall removed to make it a large kitchen (5.5 x 2.7 metres). We had a reputable company do the measuring and installation but it was a franchise and we did have some problems at the end. We have granite benchtops and a half wall servery with a granite top. The granite people came and took their own measurements, even though they were supplied with the measurements from the kitchen company, as they said it was too expensive to make a mistake. Well they still made a mistake. The benchtops were all correct, but the granite top of the half wall servery was 1 cm too short. The fellow rang his boss on his mobile to tell him and we could hear the not so happy boss and it wasn't on speaker phone. We had a double wall oven with side opening doors installed and the kitchen installer was quite good, as the cabinet it was going into was great, but our wall had a slight curve in it, so there was a gap at the back which could be seen. He trimmed the back of the cabinet to fit the wall perfectly. As we do a lot of cooking, we bought the largest pigeon pair fridge and freezer (I don't know if that's what they are called in the UK, but they are 2 separate matching free standing units) so the space was allowed for that.

Now 17 years on, we are up to our second dishwasher and pigeon pair fridge and freezer. The hinges on a couple of cupboards need replacing, but the cupboard doors (white polyurethane) and the granite tops still look good . We had an indoor BBQ grill (cast iron grill bars over electic elements over volcanic rocks) installed as well, but if we ever do another kitchen, we wouldn't install it again. We've had the wall oven repaired once, and all the dials replaced (they were plastic and I accidently melted them out of shape when I used the fan grill in the top oven. I'm more careful now.

When I was still working we had both school kitchens done. Luckily the school only had to pay for part of the domestic classroom kitchen renovation. The Dept of Ed paid for the rest. The larger kitchen went from a domestic classroom kitchen to a commercial kitchen for Hospitality commercial cookery classes - all stainless steel benches, commercial ovens etc. We had to have new non-slip flooring and new ceilings as all the buildings had vermiculite on the ceilings (crumbly looking sprayed on cement) which could fall or crumble off and if a student threw a ballpoint pen at it, it could get stuck in it like a dart. Being head teacher I did have some input in its design with the architect so I could ensure that some of the equipment we already had would fit such as a commercial fridge, and adequate powerpoints for some of the commercial electrical appliances that required 15amp powerpoints as opposed to the standard 10 amps. The 2 rooms were conmpletely gutted as they also reconfigured the gas and water, so they had to dig up the floor to lay new pipes. We couldn't use the space for 6 months. Keeping practical classes happy when they couldn't cook for 2 terms was a creative challenge. We did a few outdoor BBQ lessons. In the end it was all worth it. We had problems too with the kitchens which the contractors had to come back to fix.



Edited by MargiABC - 05 Feb 2014 at 15:42
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  Quote Jo Bird Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Feb 2014 at 18:20
Good Luck Toots.

My mum and dad have lived in their present house since 1976.
They still have the original kitchen. Unbelievable I know
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  Quote deborah31 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Feb 2014 at 22:16
let's face it, it's crazy when you think of everything you can have done to your house here.
My in-laws kitchen is early 80's, and still working fine (even if it looks outdated, very practical, and installed by my father-in-law)
When i was living in Asia was grateful for an oven/stove that worked, (we did have one gas oven explosion, as only gas ovens where we were!!) hot water, a working fridge,and a clean kitchen(tokeep the ants/lizard/cockroach population down), everything came in one colour-white, was a big shock for a while the amount of consumerism again in the western world, (soon got over it!!!)
When my Asian Washing machine broke down a few mnths ago, and i couldn't get the part (as not European model, LG wouldn't send out anyone)so sadly had to scrap it, only 5 years old. I had about 40+ machines to choose fromErmm-Never had a new machine before that one, having rented for last 20 years, came with houses, so went a bit mad, and got all singing/dancing model!!!LOL


Edited by deborah31 - 05 Feb 2014 at 22:20
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  Quote MargiABC Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Feb 2014 at 02:20
When I first went to HK to visit relatives, one aunt had an old traditional HK kitchen with a small fridge and two old style gas rings to use with a wok. 10 years later she had a new modern kitchen with a western gas stove.

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  Quote MargiABC Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Feb 2014 at 04:11
I love watching the home shows from the UK such as Escape to the Country and Homes Under the Hammer.The episodes airing now are from 2010 and 2011. I like to see the types of homes and particularly the homes renovated from almost derelict to very modern.
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  Quote Jo Bird Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Feb 2014 at 07:54
I love Homes Under the Hammer Margi.
It's amazing what people do with old houses isn't it...
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  Quote Toots Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Feb 2014 at 08:01
Hi Jo Hi Margi WaveHow are you?

Yes I can imagine it Jo. The only reason we had a new kitchen in our old house, was that we wanted  to sell the house quickly. 'If it aint broke don't fix it' In a way, I'm so glad we did, because we learned a few wrinkles I can tell you after having a new kitchen and bathroom installed.

We are so happy in this house, that we are not planning to move again and now we are in our 60's we are choosing a kitchen which will see us out.


We have spoken to several folk who have had Wicks and the whole process was effortless for them  The firm who put the kitchen in our old house was dreadful. I won't tell you who it was, or what happened, because someone reading this might be dealing with them and I don't want to be a prophet of doom.  There's good and bad in every firm but I must say we are  impressed with what we've seen and heard of about Wicks

I've always wanted one of those American fridges (yes I know Deborah, you've got one or had one goes without saying) and we're having one of those. Also we are having granite work surfaces. Another thing I've 'lusted' after because I love cooking and rolling out pastry on granite keeps it lovely and cool.




Edited by Toots - 06 Feb 2014 at 08:03
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  Quote deborah31 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Feb 2014 at 13:02

Hi Toots!

You're rightBig%20smile, I've had 3 American fridges!! (in Canada!!) in two houses, had a spare one in my basement, i like the ones with the Ice makers included. In US they even have TV's in them nowadays!- crazy.
my kids used to swing on the door handles, so had to tie them together!!!
electricity was cheap there, so not a problem having huge appiances!! and plenty of them.
I still love them, would have one here, but kitchen came with fitted built in fridge.
I miss my compactor too - in the sink, for waste, my neigbour has one here, and one of those 'boiling' water taps too.
The kitchen i inherited is a John Lewis Kitchen, now 8 years old,  they guaranteee their kitchens for only 5 years (normal probably??) so when cupboard doors have 'gone' at edges near my stove, had them re-sprayed (to colour match)as cheaper than buying new ones from them , at £160.00 a door far too expensive!! re-spray only £60 and you can't tell the difference.
I would never have wooden tops, this has driven me nuts, trying to keep them dry, and keep on top oiling them.  I have recently had them varnished/laquered, as the painter (who renovates a lot) tells me he  did it a few times, and especially in pubs, wish I'd done it sooner. Also with a sunken(under bench) sink, was not a good idea- no idea what John Lewis was thinking.  I do like my tap tho, altho just replaced the filter at £45, didn't realise it had to be changed until plumber came out recently, only been in 4 years!! I also couldn't be without my water softener. Water very hard here in Norfolk, saves me on buying Calgon, and cleaning materials for limescale etc.. Have salt blocks delivered every 6 - 9 months.
I've got a built in dish-washer but rarely use it, as make the kids wash up!!!!! and I'm a bit of a short order chef, with kids/husband coming and going at all times. (i'm not a big fan of cooking anyway)
I do like my induction though, altho I know Gas best for cooking on, wok not the same really
 
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  Quote MargiABC Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Feb 2014 at 16:22
Originally posted by Toots


Hi Jo Hi Margi WaveHow are you?I' vealways wanted one of those American fridges (yes I know Deborah, you've got one or had one goes without saying) and we're having one of those. Also we are having granite work surfaces. Another thing I've 'lusted' after because I love cooking and rolling out pastry on granite keeps it lovely and cool.



Hi Toots,

I'm very well, just a bit tired as I have been busy with Chinese New Year events that the group I belong to have put on. We had 4 guest speakers for 6 talks - 3 on Feng Shui, 1 on the history of the Willow Pattern story, 1 on CNY customs and traditions and 1 on the Yin and Yang of the Year of the Horse. I had to be at all of them, plus other events that other groups had invited us to in the last 10 days. The were all in the city, so an hour on the train each way during the week. I only drive in on weekends as its cheaper to park then.

You will love the granite bench tops. They are low maintenance, always look good and as you say, good for pastry and making pasta (I'm still making pasta). The colour of my granite bench top is called 'blue black pearl'.

When you inherit a kitchen you are limited to the space allowed for the fridge, so when you have the chance to have a new kitchen you can plan for that dream fridge to fit. Our pigeon pair fridge and freezer required a big space - 1.5 metres across.
Drawer and cupboard configuration is important too. We have 3 sets of drawer units - 1 your regular set for cutlery and utensils, two deep drawers under the wall oven for baking pans (I am guilty of having a lot of baking pans and cake tins and some live in the cupboards above the oven too) and another set of 2 deep drawers at the end of one bench. Above this set is a fake drawer, that when pulled out provides just under 1 metre of extra bench space in laminate. You'd think we wouldn't run out of bench space, but we do when we entertain, so its good to have. In one of the double under bench cupboards, we have a 3 drawer frames which we use for saucepans and stock pots, microwave ware, pyrex etc. It makes it easier to slide out and reach a saucepan at the back without having to pull out a few items to reach it. We also have a corner walk in pantry cupboard. We had some lights installed under some of the over bench cupboards as well.

We looked at several kitchen places for kitchen ideas and told the company we went with what we wanted. We looked inside every cupboard and drawer space in the every kitchen showroom we went to. It took us several months of looking and planning before we made our minds up, and then they helped us fine tune it. The company was great, but the problem we had was right at the end, we needed something fixed (nothing major), and that franchisee went into receivership. The oven and cooktop we got from a specialist kitchen appliance place as we had specific requirements in mind.

I see the dishwasher as a water saving and time saving tool. We only put it on once a day as it uses less water than hand washing 3 or more times a day, but in some ways I do agree with Deborah about hand washing dishes to teach children how to do this. When entertaining I can put in glasses, crockery and cutlery for 10 to 12 people in one go for a 2 course meal. We still handwash some items such as my kitchen knives (they should never go in the dishwasher as the handles, particularly rivetted ones can weaken), aluminium ware (reacts with the dishwashing powder and discolours) or Royal Doulton or expensive hand painted crockery as they can fade. You can overcome some of this (fading) by using less powder and they now make a special anti fade tablet in a frame that is attached to one of the drawers racks. It lasts for a lot of washes before it dissolves completely. Then there is dishwashing powder versus dishwashing tablets. I don't use the dishwashing tablets because you can't adjust the amount to use. I only use about 1 tablespoon of powder per wash. My dishwasher serviceman doesn't recommend the tablets, as different dishwashers use different amounts of water, but you have the same amount of tablet going through. You can buy 1 and 2 drawer dishwashers units, where only one drawer is used, so a lot less water for the same size tablet.

We have the extractor unit above the stove and its easy to pull apart and wash. We put the filters in the dishwasher to clean as they can get quite greasy at times.

Edited by MargiABC - 06 Feb 2014 at 16:44
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  Quote deborah31 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Feb 2014 at 17:00
Having moaned a bit about John Lewis, I like their kitchens, I still have the plans etc...from the previous owners.
I've bought my last two large electrical appliances from them, and been really happy with service and delivery etc.. I find them quite competitive price wise too.
Although saying that I would go to a local kitchen manufacturer/installer, if I was having a new kitchen installed.
Don't forget to negotiate a good price, don't be afraid to drive a hard bargain!! (I love this bit).
Most important, make sure you know the price of installation!!!! (our big error) and time period involved.
 
 
edit
This is a good thread Toots, and I don't even like cooking!!!!! (husband now cooking a roast dinner!!he's the chef when he's here!)


Edited by deborah31 - 06 Feb 2014 at 17:03
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  Quote MargiABC Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Feb 2014 at 03:13
I'm cooking a roast tonight too Deborah. While my niece has been home from uni (she goes back to her residential college in Canberra tomorrow), we have encouraged her to cook some meals (shortcut ones using bottled sauce such as chicken satays) and I taught her to cook a roast dinner. I was out and running late, so I rang her with instructions and told her peel the veggies now, put the oven on at 4pm. I got back in time for the rest. The residential college is fully catered, but they do have a kitchen student residents can use if they want to cook, and she has made her mother's choc chip biscuits there.

She also wanted to learn to sew, so I've helped her make 2 skirts with elastics waists and a dress withdarts and a zipper. My other sister won a sewing machine in a shop promotion and gave it to my niece for Christmas.

Edited by MargiABC - 07 Feb 2014 at 05:12
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  Quote Toots Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Feb 2014 at 08:28
Margi

When I was in Canada, my friends' mum always balanced an egg on its 'pointy' end at Chinese New Year. Apparently, its the only time of the year it will stand on end, and if you do it you will have good luck until the next year.
I must have broken dozens of eggs over the last 45 years having a go at it until i succeeded. Good job we like omelets LOL
I like watching the homes programs too, its surprising what tips you pick up isn't it? , This new house of ours is in a Close and all the houses (all 7 of us ) are the same. I have copied mercilessly when I've been invited in for coffee on the thinking that they've been here a lot longer than we have and know the best places to put sofas etc. Its a tit for tat thing because when we moved, we turned the small third bedroom into a coffee room. We have a little fridge and a kettle (and a biscuit tin) so that if we wake in the night we can have a cup of tea and its also great to have a coffee in bed when you wake in the morning.
I've also got my hot water bottle up there for when its a bit chilly. The other couples have done the same thing
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