Hand painted kitchen in Eversley – Hampshire
In this article about a hand painted kitchen in Eversley in Hampshire, Neil Callender explains the process to upgrade the kitchen from start to finish. It took about a week to complete the work.
At the end, you can read about another creative person with a brief to restore things in Eversley to their former glory! One major difference, the other guy took at least 2 years to get on top of his work, and that was just the beginning!
I had a call last year about repainting and making good a solid but tired looking wooden kitchen up near Hook in Hampshire.
The call came via the Traditional Painter website and as I cover this area I made contact with the customer. I always ask for photos of the units so I can take a measured look at the overall project, pinpoint any tricky details and work out a plan. It isn’t enough to just give a price and say “I know what I’m doing leave it to me!” This is a kitchen, and the client needs to have a good idea of how I am going to deliver the transformation they are after.
I sent off the estimate, and after a couple of calls, to talk through a few items, a price and start date were agreed.
The kitchen itself was of a good quality but the distressed look had to go and it needed updating with some new handles.
Down to work
So my first job was to remove all the old knobs and then clean down the units, which I did using my favourite cleaner Viro-sol. (We have moved on from sugar soap!)
Once that was done and the units were cleaned off and nice and dry, I could then start the second part, the rubbing down and making good off all the old handle holes.
I achieve a very smooth surface using my dust-free sanding setup, which also ensures a safer and cleaner working environment for both myself and the customer.
Once that part was done all the doors and units were then given a good clean over with my trusty hoover to remove any last bits of dust, then just to be 100% sure I went over with a tack rag.
One coat of Otex adhesion primer was then applied, followed by one coat of a water-borne undercoat. Both the primer and undercoat were mixed to match the final colour.
The finish for the units was going to be Helmi Matt and, as with the other paints, it comes from the Tikkurila range, which gave the units a lovely matt (5-6% sheen) finish. The colour was the equivalent of Slaked Lime Mid 149.
New handles were then marked out and fitted, and when I handed over the finished kitchen, it certainly had a nice new fresh look.
The author of the Water Babies lived and died in Eversley
Charles Kingsley was a prolific author, activist and commentator on life in Victorian times. Not quite up there with Charles Dickens, but his books, The Water Babies and Westward Ho! will probably still ring a few bells with folks around the country, and his book Alton Locke probably did for London tailors, what The Ragged Trousered Philanthropist did for English painters, by raising awareness of atrocious social and working conditions.
One of Kingsley’s greatest works though, was to tidy up the parish of Eversley.
When Charles Kingsley first came to Eversley the parish was in a very neglected state, and owing to the habit of the rector, who, for quite trifling reasons, would send the clerk to the church door at eleven to inform the few who attended that there would be no service, the ale-houses were full on Sunday and the church empty.
(fn. 4) The farmers’ sheep when pasture was scarce were turned into the neglected churchyard.
Holy Communion was celebrated only three times a year, and the communicants were few. (fn. 5)
The alms were collected in an old wooden saucer.
A cracked kitchen basin inside the font held the water for Holy Baptism; and at the altar, covered by a moth-eaten cloth, stood one old broken chair. Quote
Kingsley’s reward for his diligent work was the hand in marriage of a local landowner’s daughter. He went on to lead a very varied life, summarised here, and Charles Kingsley returned to the village some 33 years after he first arrived and died of pneumonia.
If all goes according to plan, Neil will return to Eversley in 7-10 years’ time to repaint the kitchen!
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