A focus on Masterclass kitchens… For some, the start of a new year can be a bit sluggish, but here at Pittville we are very excited to be launching two new kitchen displays. One will present our new, contemporary Italian brand ‘Doimo’ (blog coming soon…!) and the second will showcase our UK made collection ‘Masterclass’.
In recent years Pittville has become known for contemporary, handle-less kitchens, but following a recent run of Masterclass projects, it is time to put the spotlight on their beautiful range of designs.
Firstly, it should be highlighted that Masterclass Kitchens are made in the UK – just outside Cardiff to be precise. Having visited their factory, their sense of pride to manufacture in the UK is very apparent but this also comes at a time when clients are keen to ‘buy British’ and the idea of a locally made product has a huge appeal.
When it comes to the design, the style they are best known for is the classic, shaker. This timeless look is still a favourite with clients and can easily sit within a traditional or contemporary home. This is certainly the style we have had a little flurry of recently. However they also offer a very smart collection of modern, flat slab kitchens. All-in-all there are 17 door designs to chose from and over 40 colour finishes – ranging from elegant neutrals through to some bold and dramatic options.
Whichever door design you go for, one particularly elegant detail which sets them apart from their competition, is that their cabinet interiors can come in either oak or walnut effect – which definitely gives a wow factor when opening your drawers and cupboards. Although if this isn’t for you, there are 9 other cabinet colours to chose from.
And it doesn’t stop there. Masterclass have also designed a thoughtful and clever range of storage solutions which can be tailored to accommodate any lifestyle. Some particular favourites are the corner larder and bespoke pantry – both customised to suit each individual client – and the cocktail cabinet, which is a real showpiece. Very James Bond and aptly named ‘The Connery’!
A further design characteristic which is proving very popular is Masterclass’ freestanding island. Giving the appearance of a freestanding piece of furniture, this style of island has a much more gentle appearance than the traditional islands which sit directly on the floor. And yes, you can indeed build appliances into the island – the secret is that the electrics are hidden in the legs.
So as much as we enjoy designing kitchens with a contemporary, neutral, handle-less look, we also have a soft spot for this more classic style and little splash of colour… and we are very much looking forward to showing off our gorgeous new display. Watch this space for photographs!
And if you are considering a shaker kitchen for your home and are still in any doubt about whether a Masterclass kitchen is for you, their website has a fabulous selection of images and a huge database of ‘Real Kitchens’ to show you all the possible design combinations! That’s our focus on Masterclass, convinced? Come and meet us!
If you have ever renovated your kitchen or perhaps you are currently looking into it, chances are you will have come across Silestone as a worktop option. But did you know that Silestone has two gorgeous sister products, Dekton and Sensa? Well now you do!
As the leader in worktops for 25 years, Silestone has firmly established itself as a favourite choice because of its outstanding resistance and durability but also its beautiful selection of colour options. However Dekton and Sensa go one step further in all those areas. So what are the differences and which one would best suit your kitchen?!
Let’s start with the composition…
Silestone is made from 94% quartz plus some colour pigment and resin.
Dekton is made from a mix of up to 20 natural minerals which are compacted together with heat and under a weight which is comparable to 2 and a half Eiffel Towers!
Sensa is a natural granite surface which is treated to provide a much more thorough and robust seal than standard granite worktop.
Alongside a potential preference for one of those surface qualities, the next important consideration will be durability. What demands will your lifestyle have of your worktop.
To begin with, each of the three surfaces are stain resistant, even when it comes to tough stains like wine or coffee. They also have a high scratch resistance, although we would always recommend using a chopping board, even if just to protect your knives and utensils.
So when comparing the products, one of the key features which Dekton offers as an appealing upgrade to Silestone is that it is heat resistant. Meaning you can put hot pans directly on the worktop without causing any damage. So unlike most worktop options on the market, if you have Dekton, no worktop protectors are needed. Which could be a helpful feature when it comes to children or teenagers cooking in the kitchen!
A further benefit of Dekton over Silestone is that the completely natural makeup means it is chemical resistant. For example, if you spill oven cleaner on your worktop, there is no need to worry about causing any damage, because you won’t.
With regards to Sensa, if you have a preference for granite in your kitchen, the protective sealant does not need reapplying and will not wear down over time. Many granite worktops are treated on site and the sealer is simply wiped on by hand and therefore needs reapplying. However the production process for Sensa means it is integrated into the material, providing a long term treatment.
However, Silestone should not be forgotten when comparing the products. One particularly elegant detail in a kitchen is to have your sink in a matching material to your worktop and with Silestone you can do just that.
And as for cleaning, the recommended product for each of these surfaces is Cif Actifizz – so no fancy products required!
When it comes to our favourite element, the design, there are gorgeous options in each collection to suit any kitchen style. Silestone and Dekton both have over 60 colours to chose from, whereas Sensa only has nine – but they are 9 stunning options!
Each collection also has a variety of finishes available, so whether you prefer a matt, suede effect worktop or a glossy, polished one then there will be something for you to fall in love with.
It is worth noting that any patterns or markings which form the design on Silestone and Sensa, will run all the way through the thickness of the worktop. However, the designs for Dekton are printed onto the surface and so the patterns will not be visible on the edges or within any drainer grooves. An edging strip in the same material can be added but there will be no pattern match.
That being said, the palette of finish colours and markings available within the Dekton range offers an elegant upgrade from the available designs within the Silestone range.
And if you are looking for a worktop which offers something more dramatic, then Sensa is likely to be the one for you.
So after carefully selecting your cabinet doors, your handles and your appliances, you now have three fabulous worktop options to chose from when adding the finishing touch to your beautiful kitchen.
We’ve put together our current top 3 kitchen gadgets!
If you’re thinking of a new kitchen, we are here to help you with every element – all the way from the design and measuring to the installation and the finish.
With over 10 years of trading, our team of experienced designers will take your vision and create beautiful designs to fit around your space and your requirements.
One question that our designers are often getting asked is ‘what’s the latest kitchen gadgets?’, so we thought we would put together a blog for inspiration.
Latest gadgets work with any kitchen design – be it timeless or modern.
Speak to our team today, or visit our showroom in Pittville, Cheltenham, to start your kitchen planning journey with Pittville
Established, stylish and durable are words that can be used to describe the ever-growing bathroom brand – Duravit.
We are very proud to be THE company that brought Duravit to Cheltenham and the Cotswolds in 2007. We continue to offer award winning service to our customers.
After setting up shop in 1817, Duravit remains one of the market leaders and our customers would agree!
Duravit’s guiding principle is to make designer bathrooms come alive. We help you with every element of your planning and design – from a toilet and flush system to a complete restyle of your bathroom. Our team of experienced and knowledgeable designers can guide you on latest trends and the latest must-haves to make your bathroom vision come to life. Whether a timeless design with a hint of purple, a c-shape modern sink unit or a matt black surface that you’re looking for, all is possible.
Our showroom in Cheltenham, Pittville, showcases some of the designs on offer, along with the finishing touches such as taps, flush panels and tiles from renowned designer such as Phillipe Starck, EOOS and Norman Foster.
We know that planning a new bathroom can involve a lot of preparation and coordinating, that’s why we take the stress away making it a smooth and easy process for you, including full fitting and installation.
‘We are delighted with our new bathroom which was completed by Pittville Bathrooms recently. The high quality of the finish, the attention to detail and the functionality are all notable. Pittville Bathrooms was our choice because they offer a very personal service, including design, supply and installation’
‘Had my bathroom done recently & these guys were awesome & everything went without a hitch; the fitters were incredible & cleaned up every day, so I didn’t need to. Will be telling all my friends about these lovely people.’
Our customers love us because we’re different, we listen and we’re honest
Come and visit our newly designed showroom in Pittville and speak with our bathroom designers about creating your future bathroom.
One of Lindsay’s latest projects called for use of a specific colour which our clients just love! Green! It’s important to our design team to take inspiration from the unique styles our clients bring to us and incorporate the things, like colour schemes, that they specifically request. The Vaughan’s Green kitchen includes both our Comet doors in Pearl Grey and our Laser Soft door in Aquamarine. The worktops are Silver Birch Corian and the client incorporated some of their own appliances as well as couple of new pieces provided by us!
Here’s what Mark had to say…
We had previously used Pittville to do an en-suite and a down stairs bathroom which we were very pleased with, so we decided to approach them for doing our kitchen and utility room. We had a good idea of the style of fixtures and what type of work surface we wanted (Corian). Lindsay was fantastic in helping us choose the colour contrast of the units and gave us great solutions to help us best utilise the space. We eventually went with a high spec for the kitchen but with a more base range for the utility room Lindsay cleverly matched the two styles so they looked very similar . The end result is a fabulous kitchen and much better organised utility room. The fitting team were very efficient led by James and communication throughout the fitting was excellent, thank you Pittville for a job well done.
Take a look at the transformation…
So you’ve been the Pittville, Cheltenham Showroom, worked with our kitchen and bathroom designers, everything has been installed and you’ve got your new Pittville Bathroom or Kitchen styled to a T! Now what about the rest of your house? We’ve put together a few of our favourite home styling tips to help get you started…
Don’t be afraid to put a real stamp on your home! They say ‘home is where the heart is’ so let all the little quirks of what makes you, you spill out into your home.
Balance is good!
Consider each space individually and ensure you have decluttered enough to keep things streamlined (remember, less is usually more!) whilst having enough pieces on show to give your home the character you are after.
Shake it up!
Try mixing it up with different textures. You may have sleek stone worktops in your kitchen but perhaps you have a couple of fur throws over your dining chairs and some cool geometric wallpaper to add a third texture to the mix! This will not only help your home feel more balanced but will keep it from becoming too clinical.
Let the light flood in! But don’t be afraid of the dark!
We all know our homes look so much better when the sun light is streaming through the windows. Our advice is to take every opportunity to get more natural sunlight into your home, however, don’t be afraid to pair this with strategically placed dark pieces or paint colours. This can add some real drama and depth to your space.
All to often our go to for furniture placement is to push everything up against the walls but this doesn’t always do justice to the space and can make conversation across the room tricky. If your space doesn’t feel like it’s quite working why not try finding a focal point, perhaps a coffee table or fireplace and anchor your furniture off that rather than automatically using the walls as the anchoring points. See what difference it could make.
Lindsay has designed hundreds of kitchens throughout her time as a designer but we thought we’d narrow it down and ask her about one of her recently completed projects. It was in Pittville in Cheltenham, near our showroom and needed to tie in with the clients period property but also have a timeless feel. Lindsay’s clients wanted to be able to use their kitchen for both entertaining guests and for somewhere to set up their laptop when working from home. And, of course, provide plenty of practical storage solutions.
What products did you use and why? We went for a British-made kitchen, ‘Carnegie’ from Masterclass as this was ‘Classic’ and in-keeping with the style of the property but also offered luxurious oak effect interiors and contemporary pull out solutions for the modern lifestyle. Silestone worktops, for ease of cleaning and durability, coupled with Siemens appliances complimented the design perfectly. My clients could not decide between induction and gas hobs so I included a flex induction hob alongside a smaller gas domino hob, for the best of both worlds.
What colours did you use and why? I decided upon a sage green and ivory colour palette. This was a lovely fresh take on a classical kitchen. It pulled in the colours from the trees outside the window and kept the room bright and spacious. I’d suggested two different colour worktops to contrast with the mixed colour units which I feel works particularly well, especially as the island is a real feature.
Where there any hurdles to overcome? How did you do it? As this kitchen was on the first floor of a Georgian building, we overcame a number of considerations such as access, sound-proofing and out-of-square walls! We also decided against additional ceiling lighting as we didn’t want to cause damage to the lath and plaster. Instead we were clever with positioning of LEDs above the wall units to light up the beautiful cornice and offer some diffused lighting when using the kitchen in the evenings.
Why is your favourite thing about it? I love the size and shape of the island and in particular the low level table with solid oak central leg. It offers a traditional alternative to a breakfast bar or contemporary table and is also a very practical multi-purpose space, with a hidden socket for a nice decorative lamp, it gives the feel of a luxury dining area.
What do your clients say about it? They love it!
Siemens boast that you will ‘never clean your ovens again’! Sounds great, right?! But how? Their ActiveClean self-cleaning system turns all remnants left in the oven after baking, roasting or grilling etc to ash in seconds all you need to do is wipe them away with a damp cloth!
Whilst we’re on the subject of time-saving ovens, let’s talk about Siemens Home connect feature! Siemens WiFi enabled ovens allow you to control cooking times and temperatures straight from your phone! No need to get up and change the temperature manually, you won’t have to wait for the ad breaks, or get out of the bath in time to stop the dinner from burning!
Let’s not forget Gaggneau too! Gaggenau enamelled shelving and Pyrolytic technology allow for a complete self-cleaning experience without having to remove shelves first! We love this move towards self-cleaning within appliances, not just because of the obvious time saving benefits but also because it eliminates the need for harmful chemicals when cleaning out your oven. A win for the environment is a win for everybody in our books!
Gaggenau are also leading the way with sleek design and handleless ovens giving you the option to open your oven by the touch of a button on the TFT touch display.
This season we are offering upgrade options like this on all kitchens ordered before the end of January 2019.
We’ve been busy grilling our designers lately to help you get to know them and their design style better! First up on the blog is Lindsay one of our Kitchen designers. You can read her interview below and see some lovely shots of her some of her projects in future posts, so stay tuned!
Let’s start off with some of the all-important personal details…
What do you like to do to relax?
Long walks in the countryside when the sun is shining, or a glass of wine in the bath when it’s cold outside!
Where’s the most interesting place you’ve travelled to?
I’ve recently returned from my Honeymoon. We chose a Mediterranean cruise which gave us a great insight into lots of interesting places that we would love to return to and explore in more detail! Rome was truly amazing; I could have spent forever just looking at the architecture and meandering through the small winding streets.
What’s your favourite kind of music?
I love most types of music but I would these days you will find me listening to a selection of acoustic and rock tunes, mixed in with some guilty pleasures such as the Greatest Showman soundtrack!
What’s your favourite food?
Steak… as rare as possible! Although that’s a tough call as I equally get very excited about thai curry and pizza!
Lindsay has been in the interior design industry since leaving university in 2006 and has been focussed on kitchens for the last 9 years.
How did you get into design?
I’ve always loved art for as long as I can remember so chose to follow my dreams, starting with a BA (Hons) degree in Art & Design. This was then followed by a job at Ripples as their junior bathroom designer… this sparked my direction into interior design and the rest, as they say, is history!
What were you doing before you started designing?
I’ve had a few random part time positions in the past including Halfords & the West Midlands Safari Park!
What is your favourite thing about your job?
Meeting new clients makes my job very interesting and means it varies from day to day. I really enjoy seeing the project develop from concept to completion
Let’s get into your design style and process…
How would you describe your design style?
Contemporary with clean lines and a little element of surprise!
What can people expect when they come to you for a kitchen?
Usually I would encourage potential clients to visit the showroom first to see the products we offer and to have a casual chat about the project in general. This will then be followed by either a site visit or a meeting to discuss architects plans in more detail. I’ll aim to come up with a few potential designs that can work in the space along with an initial indication of price. We will then meet again at the showroom so I can talk through my ideas on the big screen.
What other designers inspire you?
I’m a fan of going ‘dark’ wherever possible! So I admire Abigail Ahern as she was really one of
the first interior designers to be brave enough to do this! I appreciate it’s not to everyone’s taste but I do think a step into the unknown can often give rewarding results.
Other than your clients’ requests and requirements, what else inspires your designs?
I often look through the latest editions of glossy home magazines to get inspiration and see what the latest trends coming through might be. Pinterest is also a great way to gather ideas and clever solutions.
What’s in your toolbox?
We have recently changed our computer design program to Winner Design which I am excited to get to grips with as the visuals look so realistic. I’m still a fan of good old fashioned notebook and pen, particularly coming from a hand-drawn design background, I still enjoy mapping my ideas out first.
What are your favourite products to work with and why?
Our German kitchens are a dream to design and sell. Our dedicated sales team in Germany are so thorough and double check our plans so everything arrives as it should, each item has its place like a jigsaw. Another favourite product is the Quooker boiling tap, it really is one luxury I believe every kitchen should have!
What are some of your favourite trends?
Currently, I am loving the dark navy and ochre yellow colour trends that are really coming through into all aspects of design. I enjoy a splash of gold here and there too!
What trends are you glad to see the back of?
Magnolia and brown! About 4/5 years ago this was all you could sell in kitchens so it’s nice that clients are becoming braver with colour choice and I think that greys are going to be around for a long while yet.
Are there any other ways you express your creativity?
I used to paint and sell large abstract canvases which I hope to return to one day. In the meantime, I’ve been enjoying decorating and accessorising our new home! I also make my own cards and write poetry for friends and family.
When local girl, May Burgess, came into our kitchen showroom looking for some input to her school design project, I don’t think anyone expected she would soon be helping to design our new ‘Home Office’ display!
With the ambition of studying product design at university next year, May was so pleased with the help from one of our senior designers, Craig Lacey, on her school project, she asked if she could come in for some work experience to understand a little more about what we do and how we do it. We were delighted to help and here’s some of her highlights:
“Having held little expectations for the week ahead of me, I walked into Pittville’s kitchen showroom on the morning of Monday the 31st of August to be greeted with smiling faces from Lindsay and Craig, the designers. Shortly after I met Alison, the manager, who outlined Pittville and its many branches as well as providing me with a flexible day-to-day plan for the week, to dip in-and-out of: an elevating start.
My main project for the week was introduced; to re-design a section of the downstairs showroom to reflect a home office theme that tied into the existing living space display, while remaining functional for use by staff to (sit clients down and discuss products). Having been given time to go through product brochures to help me produce an outline for the space, I began sketching some ideas to be drawn up on the computerised design program Pittville use later on in the week.
My week was spent shadowing all the staff to get an understanding of what each area of the business does. I learnt how important it is to double check plans and measurements with suppliers before work begins to ensure that few surprises occur and any potential lag time in production is prevented. (Something that was very relevant to my school design projects too!) I was also amazed by the amount of work that goes on ‘behind the scenes’ to help make sure customers jobs are completed efficiently and on time.
Towards the end of the week I was let loose with the design program to begin bringing my sketches for the home office showroom to life; using genuine dimensions to fit the space provided as well as experimenting with and changing materials to create a style that followed current trends. On Friday I presented my ideas to Alison and Lindsay (they seemed really pleased!) and we wrapped up with a friendly discussion of my week over some tea and cake!
This wonderful opportunity has given me a glimpse into the industry and has added new skills to my roster, ones that would be hard to gain from purely a classroom surrounding.
I started the week with no expectations and finished with a smile. Thank you Pittville!”