‘WE SWAPPED ROOMS AROUND’

A savvy re­con­fig­u­ra­tion job meant Bron could have her dream kitchen with­out any re­struc­tur­ing work

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When Ges and I got mar­ried five years ago, we de­cided to rent his house out and live in mine,’ says Bron. ‘It’s a nice, solid house, but it had got tired. We needed to go through it and work out what we wanted to do.

We left the kitchen and din­ing room un­til last as they were a bit of a mess. The kitchen was tiny and right at the back of the house, while the din­ing room was huge with an old wooden ta­ble I love and have had for years, but to be hon­est, it wasn’t used ev­ery day. Then there was a space in be­tween the din­ing room and liv­ing room that had been a play­room for the boys when they were young. It was a lay­out I’d in­her­ited when I moved in, but now we had the op­por­tu­nity to change it.

Mak­ing plans

Ges is in­cred­i­bly handy and also good at see­ing what will work, and I love choos­ing the colours and pick­ing fur­nish­ings. But we had to re­ally think how we could make some rad­i­cal changes on a budget. We de­cided the best way to up­date the kitchen, with­out need­ing any struc­tural work, was to swap the rooms around. The old kitchen would be­come a util­ity room, the din­ing room would be­come the new kitchen, and the play­room would be­come the new din­ing room. Once we’d agreed that I im­me­di­ately felt so much bet­ter.

Next steps

Then, we moved the din­ing ta­ble and got rid of any ap­pli­ances that didn’t work, so we had a clearer start­ing point. The old units were fine for the util­ity room, which is tucked out of sight any­way. We chose to leave the wash­ing ma­chine and fridge freezer in there to cut down on what had to go in the new kitchen, but move

‘swap fur­ni­ture around and move from room to room as a sim­ple way to up­date a space with a big vis­ual im­pact with­out any cost’

the dish­washer to the new space. I love to mix and match old and new for an eclec­tic look, so we al­ready had some nice old pieces for the new kitchen. The key was ex­ca­vat­ing the chim­ney breast so we could put in a range cooker.

A stroke of luck

We’d cho­sen the black range cooker from De­longhi and some plain grey kitchen units to tone in, when we got lucky. My brother Hew was re­plac­ing his kitchen and asked us if we’d like the black gran­ite from his old kitchen. All we had to do was get a van to col­lect it. It was re­ally nice qual­ity and we paid some­one to re­cut and pol­ish it, which cost £900, but even so it was a bar­gain. It came with a built-in sink and Ges fit­ted the units him­self.

Adding metal­lic touches

The tiled floor didn’t need re­plac­ing, which was another ex­pense saved. But I was de­ter­mined to in­tro­duce some metal­lic high­lights to the scheme. I chose cop­per han­dles for the grey units, and I also found some great cop­per cut­lery, lanterns, racks, uten­sils and pans, too!

Bring­ing the colour

I love colour, par­tic­u­larly pinks, which go so well with grey and cop­per. I painted

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