A Four Corners case study, focussing on the beautiful fitted kitchen bought by John and Jean Murphy in 2017.
Having both recently retired, John and Jean Murphy were looking for a new kitchen that needed to tick many boxes
This case study has been split into the following sections for ease:
1. THE DESIGN BRIEF – John & Jean’s ‘must-haves’
2. ABOUT FOUR CORNERS – Exclusively designed in Britain & Handmade in Romania
3. MAKING THE DREAM KITCHEN A REALITY – A design process that thinks outside the box
4. STUNNING RESULTS – Invaluable pre-project meetings
5. OVERCOMING THE CHALLENGES – No project is without its challenges
1. THE DESIGN BRIEF
John & Jean’s Kitchen ‘Must-Haves’
After selling their property in Stroud to be closer to their family in Cheltenham, John and Jean found the perfect new home. Situated on Cleeve Hill, the new house offered an idyllic location with magnificent views across the Cotswolds. The only downfall to the new house was the kitchen that John and Jean inherited with the house was tired and needed updating.
A designated dining area for entertaining was high on the list of ‘must haves’ for John and Jean’s new fitted kitchen, along with a hot water tap, balancing the amount of storage with the new dining area and an area where their laptop could be plugged in, to keep up with the latest news and catch up with family and friends.
John & Jean Murphy’s kitchen before, looking tired and in need of updating.
It all started one lazy Sunday afternoon, strolling through Broadway
John and Jean came across Four Corners purely by chance while window shopping in the Cotswold village of Broadway on lazy Sunday afternoon. They were immediately impressed with the Broadway showroom, in particular the kitchens on display and the fact that the kitchen cabinets were handcrafted from solid wood. After an influential visit to the Four Corners Stratford showroom, John and Jean got in touch with the Four Corners team to start the process of making their dream kitchen a reality.
“Choosing a new kitchen is exciting but it is also very daunting. You are spending a substantial amount of money with no guarantee that the final outcome is going to look how you expected from the outset. Computer drawings and images are brilliant but they are just digital images.”
2. ABOUT FOUR CORNERS
Exclusively designed in Britain and handmade in Romania
Here at Four Corners, we have been in the furniture design business for over 40 years, setting up Four Corners in 1999. Our furniture is exclusively designed in Britain and handmade in Romania – the sensitively managed forests and skilled craftsmen and women made Romania an obvious choice for furniture making. Owning our own workshop, an old converted dairy farm, means we can strictly control the quality of our bespoke products. It also offers us the flexibility needed to offer our customers bespoke kitchens and furniture, handcrafted to exact customer specifications.
Once the bespoke kitchens and furniture have been crafted, they are then hand finished to our customers exact requirements or primed ready for hand painting once installed in the customers home. After this process, the furniture is carefully bubble wrapped and shipped over to our bases in the Cotswolds.
“Our design consultant, Olivia, was brilliant. We had many conversations and bounced ideas off each other. Her input was excellent and very much appreciated.”
3. MAKING THE DREAM KITCHEN A REALITY
A design process that thinks outside the box.
When John and Jean approached Four Corners to design their dream kitchen, they wanted a designer who could think outside the box. Our designer Olivia proved the perfect match for John and Jean’s ideas. Communicating via email and on the phone regularly, along with site visits at various stages of completion, ensured the design and fitting process was stress free.
Olivia’s design talent also proved invaluable throughout the whole process as the project evolved. The Quaker Oak kitchen design was heavily influenced by the dining area and banquette, the rest of the kitchen design evolved around these elements.
John and Jean felt that one of the best decisions they made through the design process was changing the door and drawer fronts on the units in the existing pantry to match the cabinets in the main kitchen. The worktop in the pantry was also replaced and two shelves were incorporated, providing more space. This decision led to the consistent flow evident in the final kitchen design and the creation of more space that John and Jean wanted from their new kitchen
.Here at Four Corners, we often find that choosing the wood type, colours and finishes of a new kitchen are the biggest decisions our customers can make. John and Jean found this process much easier thanks to Olivia’s extensive knowledge, coming to a final decision at a meeting at the Four Corners Stratford showroom. Olivia was on hand to go through all of the various options regarding worktops, taps, wood finishes and colours.
The kitchen design was heavily influenced by the dining area and banquette, the rest of the kitchen design evolved around these elements.
4. STUNNING RESULTS
Pre project meetings are invaluable to ensure the smooth running of every Four Corners project
The decision to go with a mix of handpainted and wooden cabinetry, with a combination of handles and knobs throughout, was made thanks to the impressive kitchens on display in the Four Corners showrooms and the design input Olivia was on hand to provide. Paint charts were pored over and the colours were narrowed down to two. John and Jean were able to take away the two chosen colours as paint samples. Thanks to this they were able to make a decision they were happy with, the final colour chosen was Mono by Little Greene.
The decision to go with a banquette was made as it allowed John and Jean to seat more people within a relatively small space. Not having to allow the space for a table and full set of chairs gave John and Jean the space they required in their kitchen. Although the banquette provided the ‘must have’ dining area, it’s the range cooker that takes centre stage in the kitchen. Chosen for the very purpose of creating a focal point, John and Jeans range cooker stands out boldly.
The fitting process impressed Jean and John “They were all exceptionally professional and nothing phased them”. This was helped by the Four Corners project manager meeting with the electrician numerous times before the fitting was scheduled to take place. This ensured that there were no surprises once the fitting commenced and that everyone involved in the project was happy and knew what to do. These meetings are invaluable to ensure the smooth running of every Four Corners project.
“Our kitchen fitter, Anton, was also amazing. Nothing phased him and if something needed to be tweaked he just got on and did it with no fuss. Anton is a perfectionist and this is very evident when you look at the way in which the kitchen has been fitted. “
5. OVERCOMING THE CHALLENGES
No project is without its challenges and John and Jean’s kitchen was no exception.
With a tight budget affecting the choice of worktop used in the kitchen and a lack of natural light, the Four Corners team were on hand to help overcome these challenges. As there was only one small window to let in natural light, it was incredibly important that the lighting was right for the kitchen. The Four Corners fitting team worked closely with the electricians involved in the project to achieve the ideal solution. Incorporating stylish spotlights, under cabinet lighting and stunning hanging lighting, John and Jean were able to achieve the perfect balance of lighting. Ensuring that the lighting could be altered depending on mood, creating the perfect ambiance for every occasion.
Another challenge that presented itself during the design process was the decision to include a TV unit half way through. Thinking on her toes, Olivia was able to adapt the design to include the TV unit which John and Jean were very happy with and felt worked well in the kitchen.
Friends and family of Jean and John have had nothing but positive things to say about their stunning new Four Corners Quaker Oak kitchen and Four Corners have been recommended without hesitation. John and Jean have commented on their new kitchen, saying how much they love it and how cooking is no longer a chore! They now love cooking Sunday roasts again thanks to their stunning new kitchen.
Details of storage solutions, following through to the refreshed larder cupboard
“All of the Four Corners team were excellent and I am so pleased that we fell upon them one lazy Sunday afternoon in Broadway!”
Like what you see?
If your kitchen is in need of updating, or you want to create more storage space like Jean and John, or you just want to discuss the best options for your kitchen, our talented design team are always on hand to talk through the options available and bounce ideas around.
We would like to thank John & Jean Murphy for allowing us to share their kitchen story.
If you have had a Four Corners fitted kitchen that you are happy to be featured here, please get in touch, firstname.lastname@example.org