A Guide to Buying Kitchen Worktops – Guest Post from Trade Up Kitchens

Our friend John Stuart over at Trade Up Kitchens – a UK-based kitchen supply company – has a guest post for us: “A Guide to Buying Kitchen Worktops.” For those of us in the US, a “kitchen worktop” is a counter top. Actually, “worktop” makes more sense, doesn’t it? In any event, here it is. I hope you enjoy it!

Buying Kitchen Worktops

Your choice of kitchen worktops will dramatically affect the whole aesthetic of your kitchen. Choosing your kitchen worktop is one aspect which should never be overlooked during the design process. Similar to your flooring, your kitchen worktops sit on a horizontal plane, making it a prominent feature in your kitchen.  With so many options available, choosing your kitchen worktop can seem like an impossible task but our guide is on hand to help you find the best option for you.

Granite Worktop
Photo – Trade Up Kitchens

Before choosing your kitchen worktop, it’s important to consider two things:

Your budget

Worktops come in a variety of materials, all at differing price points. Before you decide on a material for your kitchen worktop, it’s important to assess your budget – this will dramatically influence your choice of worktop.

Your lifestyle

If you’re choosing kitchen worktops for a student house or you’ve got a house full of children, then you’ll need to consider a sturdy, low-maintenance worktop. Alternatively, if you’re likely to clean up any spills immediately and don’t mind dedicating a little time to its maintenance, then you’ve got a few more options when it comes to kitchen worktops.  

After you’ve taken these two things into consideration, you’ve got to choose from the following kitchen worktops: Continue reading “A Guide to Buying Kitchen Worktops – Guest Post from Trade Up Kitchens”

Hildring House Kitchen on DesignSponge!

Our (well, Debra’s) Hildring House kitchen is featured on Design Sponge’s Before and After. Go take a look!

Hildring House Kitchen
Photo by Amber Shumake

Just in case you missed the link, find it here.

And the adventures continue!

Best –


The Unfitted Kitchen – a Guest Post by Debra

Debra is back with another guest post – this one dealing with the unfitted kitchen that occupied quite a bit of the last post. As always, if I have comments (and you know I won’t be able to help myself), they’ll be in italics.  –Dan

Hello Everyone- Debra here. So Dan comes home today and tells me that no one has ever heard of an unfitted kitchen! I had to do a quick web check to be certain I had not accidentally made it up (I do suffer from the occasional bout of making things up –occasional?). But luckily, this time I have not done so!

Here’s how our unfitted kitchen came about- in addition to being a remodeloholic, I’m also an anglophile. I fell in love many years ago with British decor and I have long paid ridiculous amounts of money to get the British decorating magazines. Which is how I became familiar with the term and the concept of an “unfitted kitchen.”

The term ‘unfitted’ means freestanding or independent and is an English term that contrasts to the term ‘fitted kitchen’ which refers to a kitchen that is created with continuous bands of cabinetry and counter tops. Fitted kitchens are far more common in the US.

Devol Kitchens
Devol Kitchens

This one is more like ours – a “partially fitted” kitchen. From a cabinet maker in the UK – check out their website (devolkitchens.co.uk) – they make lovely things …. and I’m sure they’d ship for a small (right) fee. Continue reading “The Unfitted Kitchen – a Guest Post by Debra”

Progress at Hildring House – Of Grass and Knobs and Unfitted Kitchens

While we were in Spain, things progressed at Hildring House – evidenced by grass, knobs, and the unfitted kitchen. This phase of the renovation is nearing an end (please!) and it’s turning out well, we think. Right before we left, the grey decomposed granite had gone down in the sitting area out front

Crushed gravel sitting areaand some staking had been done in the area of the screening bed:

Bare dirtAnd now for the progress:


Sod is down

sitting area with sodwe put in the first couple of many, many more plants to come

Front bed
Effie surveying the yard

Continue reading “Progress at Hildring House – Of Grass and Knobs and Unfitted Kitchens”

Hildring House Renovation Update – Random Pictures of Progress

I don’t know if things really are moving glacially on the Hildring House renovation or if it’s just because we’re living there while it’s happening. Progress is being made, however. Let’s take a look at some of the recent developments. Remember the Ikea Pax closets that I was putting in the grandboys’ room? Here they are:

Two units, one for each boy. They’ll be perfect for the occasions when they stay with us. Continue reading “Hildring House Renovation Update – Random Pictures of Progress”

Life in the Construction Zone – A Quick Hildring House Renovation Update

You know how they say that when you’re experiencing something unpleasant, you should close your eyes and think of being somewhere beautiful? That’s what I’m doing with this first pic – it takes me away from the dust and paint and plumbing and electrical work. Well, that and providing the first of Debra’s mandated minimum two pretty pictures per post.

Barbados beach
Barbados – Winter 2015

The work continuing at Hildring House is leading to a beautiful place, too. Continue reading “Life in the Construction Zone – A Quick Hildring House Renovation Update”