Social Sunshine - Victorian Galley Kitchen Renovation

Social Sunshine – Victorian Galley Kitchen Renovation

This welcoming Victorian terrace kitchen and ‘yarden’ architectural interior design renovation in Newcastle created a connected spatial solution without an extension or bi-fold in sight…

Social Sunshine - Victorian Galley Kitchen Renovation

RETURNING CUSTOMER

Studio Dean partially renovated this Newcastle Victorian city-centre semi in 2019. We always work to an interior architecture ‘masterplan’ of how the client wants the eventual entire finished project to end up, even if they only have the financial or mental bandwidth to tackle it one step at a time.

Last year the client returned to us, asking for her small, dark galley kitchen and yard to be transformed into a bright, airy space designed for friends to gather. She initially just asked for the kitchen to have a facelift, but financially it makes sense to do things once and do them properly, so this renovation is what we suggested.

Our client loves having her friends round for dinners which she cooks from scratch. She wanted to create a space where they could hang out with her comfortably in the kitchen while she prepared dinner. The way the kitchen was, there just wasn’t room.

Social Sunshine - Victorian Galley Kitchen Renovation

CATHY’S VISION

Our architectural solution was to knock down the lean-to and install a huge, south-facing picture window. We then took the connected cooking idea a step further and opened up a west-facing window between the cooker and an outdoor bar area. This created a connected indoor/outdoor living space without the need for floor-to-ceiling bi-fold doors, where our culinary client could cook with her friends. Connectivity doesn’t always mean that you need to walk between spaces. 

Our client had a range cooker, which she thought was a must-have for a keen cook. This can be the true, but in this case, it was holding her back from her ultimate goals for the space. A range cooker brings all of the cooking into one place, which can be good, but means that you are confined to that one space, without a lot of preparation space to hand. We replaced the range with eye-level ovens and placed a huge hob by the window that had seating on the other side, with loads of space either side so that our client could prep, chat and do the active cooking in the most sociable spot in the house, not hunched over a range, looking at a wall.

Social Sunshine - Victorian Galley Kitchen Renovation

LIGHT & BRIGHT

Our client was excited about bringing in yellow to her kitchen to ‘create a bright, sunny space’ that tied into the stained-glass pieces in her home which had yellow panes. As a studio we struggle with yellow as it is notoriously tricky to get right and work in the elegant, timeless style and palette that we had used for the rest of the house. As a solution, we found some brilliant yellow glazed tiles which reflect all shades of yellow. This meant we could tie the neutral palette and the yellow together using green tones and neutrals, and make the space light, bright and summery without using yellow paint. Our client loved that we were clever enough to bring yellow in in a way that would work with the interior design rest of her home.

Social Sunshine - Victorian Galley Kitchen Renovation

BREAKFAST NOOK

We also managed to integrate a breakfast cupboard. We created a bespoke laundry space in tall cupboards around the door. We hid all the laundry machines in there with pull-out airers and even a small heater to help clothes dry. If a laundry room needs to be done in a small space, this is the way to do it.  We used a lot of drawers in place of cupboards to maximise storage space.

Social Sunshine - Victorian Galley Kitchen Renovation

‘YARDEN’ OF DREAMS

Outside we built a bespoke seating area on decking and used tiles that echoed the indoor flooring and woodwork that matched the indoor rooms to create continuity between the spaces. We installed vertical planting.

The process was not all plain sailing. When we were taking out a lot of wall and putting in a lintel, we discovered there was half a lintel in there and not a full one. The joists were undersized for holding up the upstairs floor. The project then became a full structural engineer’s report into how to support the house and it became a much bigger architectural job. This had a knock-on effect to the external work. We were also reliant on the weather, no concrete meant no tiling which meant no planting. We learned to always put a really good project manager in place who can deal with the unexpected – and never ever rely on the British weather, always have a contingency plan!

Social Sunshine - Victorian Galley Kitchen Renovation

Social Sunshine - Victorian Galley Kitchen Renovation

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