Over the last couple of weeks, Clem Carpentry has been busy transforming a small outdated kitchen in a New Farm apartment into a modern kitchen with all the trimmings. On our first consultation with the client, they gave us a very clear brief of their wishes. This was in essence a complete makeover for the kitchen. They asked us to take it from a very simplistic laminate kitchen and give it new life as a modern industrial-inspired kitchen. The main feature of the new kitchen, the client identified, was a dark timber benchtop with good grain and few knots. Other key areas of focus included upgrading the oven and cook-top.
The process began with a comprehensive consultation with the client. During this consultation, we assessed the existing cabinetry for its structural viability. As the cabinetry was only five years old the carcass was in a stable condition and we were able to incorporate it.
Discussions included the space we had to work with and the best layout for functionality. Together with the client, we talked through plumbing, lighting and electricals to see what the client’s desires were.
The new timber bench top was going to extend from the apartment’s bi-folding windows overlooking a beautiful courtyard next door. Our design expert presented several suitable options within the brief. The client chose Australian blackwood for several reasons — its natural beauty, durability and strength. The timber starts out a light chocolate colour, and it ages well over time in a sunny location to become a rich dark chocolate tone. So, it met our client’s desire exactly.
The next stage was viewing and selecting tiles and a splashback to tie the new kitchen together. Holly, our designer, brought several samples for the client to view. As our client had very specific ideas about the overall look, narrowing down the selection was quick and seamless. Final selection went to a glossy emerald green Italian Porcelain tile with a crackle effect. With tapware and a sink to go, our client gave us one clear directive: “No chrome”. Again, this simplified the design and selection process.
By now, we had selected and finalised all materials and design. Next, we provided the plans to our cabinet maker. The timber benchtop needed good protection to fulfil its task, so our cabinet maker applied DGI Country Oil (a single-pack eurothane, specifically designed for bench tops). They applied three coats for maximum protection. The added benefit of product is that it enabled the client to easily recoat and repair any scratches.
The new oven required a plinth to stand on. Our brilliant cabinet maker custom-built it. Ingeniously, he converted this space into a large under-oven drawer, creating much-needed extra space for storage. Then he cleverly shuffled the existing cabinetry to ensure it aligned perfectly in the new kitchen layout.
Marc (our lead carpenter) and Holly (designer) completed the demolition, with the aid of several other crew members.
Once demolition was complete, we could begin to put the new kitchen together.
We started with the new benchtop, which continued across under the bi-fold windows of the apartment. It offers the owners a breakfast bar space which, in a small apartment with no designated dining space, was very welcome.
To tie in with the splashback, we added new feature black power points before tiling.
We installed tiling in a subway brick pattern with black aluminium and black grout to bring the look together.
The plumber fitted all tapware and the new sink.
The final elements consisted of the oven and lighting and all electricals.
There were several other trusted, reliable and expert tradespeople who helped Clem Carpentry to provide another perfect kitchen to our client’s satisfaction. Clem Carpentry work as a team in all the projects we undertake. We recognise that it is only through the combined experience and individual contribution and skillset of each crew member that our workmanship remains such high quality.