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Kitchen renovation Stoke Holy Cross Watermill

Listed under Blog, Fluxaf, hand-painted kitchen, Richard Willott Posted Jan 23 2020

Richard Willott, Traditional Painter for Norfolk, shares this case study of a Kitchen renovation near Stoke Holy Cross Watermill. If you know the area, you will understand the sub title – Some like it Hot!

Summary of Kitchen renovation near Stoke Holy Cross Watermill.
Summary of Kitchen renovation Stoke Holy Cross Watermill. This kitchen was natural pine, similar in colour to the table top. It took approximately 10 days to renovate and paint in a colour equivalent to “White Tie”. Richard uses a very durable low odour water-based enamel. For budgeting purposes, we call this a “20 door kitchen” which is 17 doors and 3 internal cupboards. Worktops and handles can be changed before work commences, completely transforming the space for a fraction of the cost and disruption of new. For the full story keep on reading. There is a contact form at the bottom of the page if you would like to discuss your kitchen or furniture painting project.

Stoke Holy Cross Watermill

Stoke Holy Cross Watermill
Stoke Holy Cross Watermill

I like to find out a little bit about the history of the places where I paint kitchens. The river Tas feeds Stoke Holy Cross Watermill which dates back to Roman times. Back in 1814 it powered the mill for the famous mustard producer Jeremiah Colman . With the help of his nephew James, it grew to become one of the most successful mustard producers in the UK. Most recently the water mill hosts a fine dining restaurant

The mill was built of weatherboard over a brick base with a pantiled roof. The water had a fall of 12 feet to power the two breast shot wheels and usually a wooden chute served to carry the water away from the foundations. When milling corn the wheels were driving seven pairs of stones making it one of the largest mills in the county. And the largest mill in the UK is? This one.

The kitchen renovation stage 1                  

This kitchen renovation project was quite literally a stone’s throw from the Stoke Holy Cross Watermill. My clients, John and Sandra, contacted me several months ago about transforming their solid pine kitchen into something a lot brighter and more modern.

Preliminary enquiry… When I first received their emailed request, I replied, asking for some general layout photos showing all the doors, drawers and end panels. From these photos I can provide every client an approximate quotation for their hand painted kitchen project.

From there, if the customer is happy to proceed, I arrange a home visit to confirm all details.

Colours. When it comes to choosing a colour, there is no restriction or limitation because of paint! By that I mean, if you want a colour from any colour card or fabric sample, in my experience we can accurately match almost any colour in our preferred furniture enamel. If you want a kitchen painted the same colour as a Coleman’s mustard tin, no problem!

Once a colour choice has been made I suggest buying a sample pot and preparing a sample board or simple lining paper. These can be moved around the kitchen so you can get an idea of what the colour looks like in different lights. They decided on an equivalent of White Tie in a Matt 15% sheen.

Down to work, preparing the kitchen

Degreasing. Once I have protected everything precious, I start by using a 50/50 mix of Fluxaf pro clean and a coarse green scourer to degrease all of the surfaces. This is a crucial part of the process, literally the key to ensuring the high quality finish overall.

As with many of the kitchens I do, work-space is always a challenging factor. To keep things simple and efficient, I label and remove all doors and drawer fronts and transport them to my workshop.

Sanding. I treated all the base and wall units and end panels to a good sanding. I use a combination of 120 and 240 grit Abranet abrasive on my faithful Festool RTS 400 sander. The sander is connected to a Festool CTL Midi dust extractor, a not inexpensive combination that ensures all surfaces are properly sanded with minimum mess.

Primers. I wipe everything down thoroughly with a methylated spirit cloth before ever applying any paint. A perfectly prepared surface is ready for the first of two coats of adhesion primer.

The following day I started the same procedure back at the workshop. All the doors, drawers and kick boards received the same amount of care and attention to detail. Jeremiah Coleman would be proud of the lengths I go to! He knows a thing or two about sweating the details.

Unlike most mustard manufacturers, we sieve our seeds up to 9 times to remove any trace of impurities. That’s what gives it that famous full-on flavour.

Colman mustard

Simple but effective upgrade – handles

My clients decided to fit new handles, which as you can see in the photos are not the average generic handle. Ordinarily holes from the old handles never align with the new ones, so I fill all existing holes with a 2-pack filler. Once dried, I then appy an ultra-fine filler to finish, lightly sanded. Time to move on to the primers.

Kitchen renovation near Stoke Holy Cross Watermill

Second primer coat and top coats

Once the first primer had dried I sanded it flat and applied the next coat of undercoat primer. I prefer to tint this to the chosen top colour to ensure maximum depth of colour. Also if the top coat were ever damaged in later life, you wouldn’t see an unsightly bog standard white primer showing though.

When dry, I de-nibbed the primer before the final 2 top-coats.

After the painting process was finished at the workshop, I returned to site to apply the finishing coats to all the static furniture. I made sure the doors were bone dry before I carefully re-hung them. I filled all the holes from the older handles and then drilled new holes for the new handles.

Units painted with equivalent of White Tie with contrasting stone and natural timber tops

What next?

If you are in the Norfolk or Suffolk area, and are looking to upgrade your kitchen, I would happy to provide a no obligation quote. Just complete the form found at the bottom of most pages on this site. Include your postcode, and I will be in touch promptly. We can go through the stages as described in this case study and you will end up with a beautiful “new kitchen”.

Not only will my services cost a fraction of a new kitchen, but you dodge a lot of mess, disruption and environmental issues. Those are the parts of the story they fail to mention with new kitchens! Such a waste to rip out and send old but perfectly serviceable units to landfill. This is my profile page with links to bona fide customer reviews and contact details.

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