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At home with ‘Will & Grace’

No, not a revival of the American ‘90s sitcom! Warwickshire’s Will and Grace Lyne have transformed a humble steel cattle shed into a beautiful modern home with a bright and airy open-plan kitchen. Muddy takes a peek...

As a busy married couple, with two children under three – their youngest was born just five months ago – Will and Grace Lyne have been running the entire operation of their luxury Leamington Spa kitchen and interiors brand, Christopher Peters, from their own kitchen. How have they managed??

Remarkably well, not a single one of their planned work renovation projects has been compromised during the three separate lockdown periods, even with limited access to their Warwickshire showroom. All of their in-house designers, fabricators and installers have been working, contact free, to deliver client projects on time.

We caught up with them at home for some homemade breadcrumbs and a nose-around their gorgeous new kitchen space…

Multi-functional family-friendly island – tick!

What type of property is it?

A barn conversion in the Warwickshire countryside in between Leamington Spa and Rugby. Originally it was an old cattle shed – literally a steel frame in the corner of a field.

Has it been like living on a set of Grand Designs?

Yes! We needed planning permission and have remodelled, built and project managed it all ourselves over the last three years.

What was on your original wish-list when designing your own kitchen?

We wanted it to be open plan, bright and airy with plenty of light and
socialising space. We absolutely knew we had to have one of our own kitchens and were looking for as many appliances to be concealed as possible to keep the country kitchen look.

Integrated wine drawer

How has it worked out?

The space flows from kitchen to dining and into the lounge area and when the summer returns the two walls of bifold doors around the lounge will be open at every opportunity. We wanted it to be a comfortable family living space and it really works.

Can you talk us through your design choices?

Absolutely!

Flooring

We’ve gone for a dark green/grey limestone floor which runs through into the hallway. It’s light, cohesive and brings everything together.

Cupboard units

We chose modern simple shaker-style cabinetry with soft curved corners for the taller units and a large central island. The island is Farrow & Ball Downpipe which works very well with the flooring while the external units are painted Farrow & Ball Purbeck Stone, a light understated grey. We’ve also used this shade for the woodwork throughout the entire house.

Farrow & Ball’s Ammonite is on the walls and ceiling to bring the whole space together.

Surfaces

The work surfaces are all quartz – we recommend this to most clients because of its hard-wearing nature and the variety of colours. All the main surfaces are in London Grey, however we decided to utilise a different variation on the island, it’s Caesarstone Moreland Fog, which is a more heavily veined surface.

Handles

We have used handles by Armac Martin in a burnished brass, living finish.
They add a relaxed, lived-in element to the overall feel.

Lighting

Set in brick on the kitchen wall we’ve downlighters and three glass pendants over the island.

Latest kitchen tech trending

We wanted two dishwashers, one full size and a double DishDrawer from Fisher Paykel. We can use the main dishwasher for everyday use and use a DishDrawer to just put the baby’s bottles on or glasses after a party!

Quooker Flex tap – this thing is amazing! You literally can have hot, boiling, cold, filtered, and sparkling water out of one tap.

Rather than an American fridge freezer, we opted for an integrated French Door Fisher & Paykel 90cm fridge freezer which opens as two doors at the top to a large fridge space with a freezer drawer at the bottom. It makes everything so accessible for family life.

What clever design features would you really recommend based on your own experience?

A built-in pantry or larder cupboard – they’re great for a clutter-free kitchen – as well as food, we put the toaster in there or you could install a coffeemaker.

Drawers are a great useable storage solution and they don’t necessarily always need to be on show. We have included two cupboards with concealed, internal drawers so as everything in a large low level cupboard can be accessed easily.

Then to ensure the drawers are as useful as possible, we have included large cutlery inserts for all of the partywear and second for everyday use, along with a knife drawer and spice drawer.

Sustainability focus

We have utilised the entire kitchen living space roof for a bank of solar panels and the property is heated with a ground source heating system. We tried to consider materials throughout the property and always ensure that all our kitchens are made from sustainably sourced timber.

What are you loving most about the space?

W. The large central island is great for both prep spaces (for Theo as well as us), working on laptops as well as forming a sociable family seating area. 

G. I just love the open plan kitchen-living space which means we can all spread out. I like the family feel of us all being together. Theo will drift in and out from the playroom bringing his toys in and watching TV.  I’ve a playmat for the baby which I put on the floor, then I can just curl up close by on the sofa to write a few emails.

And what are you most looking forward to when lockdown ends?

Using the space for what it was designed for – entertaining! While on the work front, we can’t wait to reopen our showroom.

Christopher Peters Kitchens and Interiors, 9 Denby Buildings, Regent Grove, Leamington Spa, CV32 4NY. The showroom will be reopening on April 12 and will be operating on an appointment basis. Tel: 01926 832511 or email contact@christopherpeters.com

During the current lockdown their workshop and paint shop remain open, and they are continuing to install bespoke and hand painted kitchens and furniture around the home in a Covid-secure manner.

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