7 ways to create a fresh country kitchen

A timeless investment that's sure to bring pleasure for years to come, a bespoke country-style kitchen is rarely out of fashion...

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‘Vaulted Kitchen’, George Robinson Kitchens

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A key design feature to this kitchen is the vaulted ceiling with exposed green oak beams. This design creates a look very similar to a barn conversion. The choice of cabinetry gives the kitchen a classic look and sheer quantity of draws and cabinets provide plentiful storage.

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‘Vermont Freestanding’, Fired Earth

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Fired Earth kitchens start from just under £10,000

So many of us adore the soft whites and creams associated with Scandinavian style. The Vermont kitchen has the distressed wood of the French country look as well as sophisticated tailoring of US coastal homes to create one of Fired Earth’s most accessible kitchen.

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‘Shaker’, Harvey Jones Kitchens

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Harvey Jones Kitchens start from £17,000

Harvey Jones makes kitchens to order, using premium materials and traditional joinery techniques. The clean lines and classical proportions are influenced by early 19th-century Shaker furniture.

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‘Milan’, Mark Wilkinson

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A Mark Wilkinson kitchen starts from £35,000

A kitchen that portrays pure style without clutter, the Milan kitchen has hand-stitched leather handles and soft curved lines that create fluid elegance. The Milan kitchen represents all that the city has to offer, promise and excitement.

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‘Milton’, Second Nature

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Kitchens from Second Nature start at £15,000

Second Nature’s ‘Milton Sage’ kitchen features a traditional in-frame design and comes in a vareity of colours, all ideal for combining with natural materials such as slate, timber, wicker, pewter and granite. This modern-rustic look is tied together with a cool stone floor.

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‘New Brasserie’, Smallbone of Devizes

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Kitchens from Smallbone of Devizes start at £40,000

The latest collection from Smallbone embraces the kitchen as a social hub as well as a functional space. Taking inspiration from the relaxed setting of the brasserie, the kitchen is characterised by horizontal slats of oak, scaffolding planks and an oversized dresser. To finish it off, New Brasserie is available in any paint colour or can be hand painted by their skilled decorative artists.

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‘Original Freestanding Kitchen’, Chalon

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Chalon kitchens start at £30,000

This ‘Original Freestanding’ kitchen is made in a style that emulates the classic elegance of English 18th and 19th-century furniture. It has been hand-finished using a unique, distressed paint technique, designed to look as if each piece had naturally aged.

Who can resist the charm of the country kitchen? The warmer season cries for heaped salads and summer roasts which, rustled up in a country kitchen, give a satisfying sense of rustic wholesomeness.

The rural look is all about warmth, welcome and good old-fashioned comfort. Small or spacious, a country kitchen is friendly and hospitable, as well as practical and charmingly pretty – an ideal backdrop for vintage kitchenalia or contrasted with more directional homewares.

Today’s country kitchen has its roots in the food storage, preparation and cooking areas of the great English houses. Open shelves and a larder cupboard, a dresser on which to display crockery, hanging racks and hooks for pots, pans and utensils, a trestle or refectory table, a deep ceramic sink and a traditional range cooker: none of these has changed much in centuries.

While some might argue that a true country kitchen consists of a collection of free-standing cupboards in a variety of shapes, sizes and styles, it is perfectly possible to create a rural look using fitted units’ Just make sure that they’re not overly unified.

Buying a new country-style kitchen can be as inexpensive – or as pricey – as you wish, but it does help if you ensure that what you’re buying is well-made and durable. It is easily possible to buy just a few, high-quality cupboards and make up the rest of your storage space with open shelves, racks and rails, and pieces such as a dresser, table or sideboard picked up at auctions and fairs.

Take inspiration from this gallery of the seven best.

H&A’s Kitchen directory

Aga
0845 712 5207; aga-web.co.uk

Chalon
01458 254600; chalon.com

Esse
01282 813235; esse.com/cookers

Everhot
01453 890018; everhot.co.uk

Fired Earth
0845 366 0400; firedearth.com

George Robinson Kitchens
01736 367369; georgerobinsonkitchens.co.uk

Harvey Jones
0800 389 7365; harveyjones.com

Jasper & Co
0844 858 4084; jasperco.co.uk

John Lewis of Hungerford
0700 278 4726; john-lewis.co.uk/

Mark Wilkinson
01380 850007; mwf.com

Moben
0800 413413; moben.co.uk

The Newcastle Furniture Company
0191 261 8900; newcastlefurniture.com

Plain English
01449 774028; plainenglishdesign.co.uk

Rayburn
08457 626147; rayburn-web.co.uk

Second Nature
01325 505555; sncollection.co.uk

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Smallbone
0207 589 5998; smallbone.co.uk