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We all struggle on what colour scheme to pick when changing the kitchen. You tend to constantly change your mind, because ‘that worktop won’t go with those units’ and ‘that flooring doesn’t match the other colours’, it is a very lengthy process to get it all looking perfect.

Recently, it was revealed that Victoria and David Beckham are planning a James Bond-style kitchen in their new home. We at Big Kitchen Shop thought this was a great idea, especially for people who struggle with colour schemes, finding the inspiration from movies, nature, decades or trends is an ideal place to start when planning a kitchen.

We are going to help you draw some inspiration for a new kitchen style.

James Bond

You don’t have to spend an extortionate amount of money to create your dream kitchen. But if you are looking for a James Bond-styled kitchen, with lots of gadgets, smooth and sleek appearance and somewhere in the house to be the focal point of entertaining, well this kitchen is perfect for you!

The Image Black Kitchen has gloss worktops and doors that offer a bold and dramatic style.

Image Black Kitchen

Nature Inspired

Most kitchens are placed at the back of a house, so looking out onto the garden can be very peaceful when working in a stressful cooking environment. If you’re looking for a more natural, fresh and clean kitchen, the Cottage Cream Kitchen is ideal for creating this look; with plenty of additional accessories to help complete the style you’re aiming for.

Cottage Cream Kitchen

Here & Now Living

Kitchens have now merged with the dining room; the back of a house is now the entertaining area. Many new houses are adapting this look to all the homes they’re building; this new design creates the illusion of more space. Living in a house like this gives you the opportunity to experiment with more space by adding units or even reduce the kitchen area with fewer units but still giving you more space. The Integra Ferrara Oak Kitchen is a classic kitchen design which is perfect for any kitchen/diner home.

Integra Ferrar Oak Kicthen

Island Life

If you have a large kitchen it is sometimes quick and easy to just place a table in the middle of the floor. Why not add a freestanding island to your kitchen? You can still have the spacious area in your kitchen, an island will just give you the option to add a breakfast bar or add more units. It is a great place for guest to stand and socialise. There are many different sizes of island you can have, remember, you decide your kitchen. The Cologne Walnut Kitchen offers both units and a breakfast bar, giving you the best of the two options.

Cologne Walnut Kitchen

With these inspirational ideas we are you will find the perfect kitchen to suit your home and personality!

Everyone would love a futuristic, space age kitchen that could cook a meal for you in a matter of minutes. But while we wait for a mad genius to invent a kitchen that would take away the timely task of preparing a Sunday lunch, we can lend a hand from technology to help us along the way.

Technology sure is making life a little easier in the kitchen by providing gadgets that make home cooking simple. So here is a list of our favourite tasty tech on the market to get your tastebuds tantalised!

iKettle

iKettle

Imagine a world where a cup of coffee would make itself whilst you’re laying in bed… Well, we’re almost there with this amazing gadget, iKettle; the world’s first WiFi kettle. The iKettle will allow you to control your hot beverage making anywhere in your home from your iPhone. Before going to sleep on an evening, set your iKettle app to ‘Wake Mode’ and this will enable the iKettle to give you the most satisfying wake up call; asking you if you would like a hot drink. Another fantastic element is that it welcomes you home by asking if you would like to pop the kettle on.

With it’s sleek stainless steel design and it’s four tailored temperature settings, this is definitely one of the most must-have kitchen gadgets.

Stirr – The automatic sauce stirrer

Stirr automatic stirrer

This stirrer is one of the funkiest, and most strange gadgets around. It is designed and produced by a company call üutensil, who also make some other fun and fresh kitchen products. You may need this in times when you feel like you could do with an extra arm, juggling pots and pans in the kitchen. Definitely a product for someone who likes to multitask with the help of an electronic aid at hand. 

The way that this little beauty works is, you turn it on and the feet vibrate. There are different speed settings, so depending on what you are cooking, you can set accordingly. Happy stirring!

Taylor 3890 Measuring Cup and Scale

Taylor measuring cup and scale

Gone are the days of painstakingly trying to measure out a liquid whilst cooking. No more will there be crouching down to make sure that the water is exactly at the level it should be. Not when we have this innovative measuring jug, made by Taylor USA.

This measuring jug and scale is the most accurate on the market, as it measures by weight and not volume. It is quite handy, as it automatically converts ingredients such as water, flour and sugar into cups. With the user-friendly digital display, you can change your measurements simply from ounces/pounds to grams, or whichever metric you desire.

Trebs Automatic Pasta Gusto Machine

Pasta Gusto pasta machine

This automatic pasta making machine will give you fresh, homemade pasta in the space of 15 minutes. What’s brilliant about it is, it does all the work for you; including kneading and mixing of the ingredients. The PastaGusto comes apart, so it is very easy to clean, and it is also dishwasher resistant for ease of use.  It also comes with 10 different extrusion disks for various types of pasta and even recipe suggestions so you can’t make any mistakes.

If you want great tasting fresh pasta in minutes, without having to use shop bought produce, then this is the machine for you.

Perhaps these funky products could add to your new kitchen installation to give it that finishing touch.

Most celebrities live very lavish lifestyles, with private jets, fast cars, huge houses and let’s not forget luxury kitchens!

Here’s your chance to get a sneak-peek inside the homes of the most recognised faces in showbiz and even if you’re not interested in finding out whether Will Ferrell prefers an electric or gas oven, it is a good way to get some ideas flowing for your own kitchen design!

(Click on the celebrity names to view additional images)

Gerard Butler

This antique looking kitchen can be found in the Manhattan loft home of ‘300’ actor, Gerard Butler. One aspect that gives it that old, antique feeling is the cabinets and doors, which were actually made form leftover flooring. The big American style fridge really gives the kitchen a family feel; we have a similar one on our website. The chandelier is a centre piece in the kitchen and adds even more character to it.

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American style fridge freezer


 

Will Ferrell

You would expect comedy genius, Will Ferrell, to have a quirky, loud design throughout his kitchen but he has actually gone for a sleek sophisticated design. It is a plain white throughout, with stylish black worktops giving a really sleek design. If you like this then you will love our Cologne Smooth White kitchen design which is similar to this, minus the Lichtenstein painting!

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Similar kitchen design to Will Ferrell’s

 

John Legend

The Ordinary people singer, John Legend has an open, bright kitchen space. The large roof to floor windows at the end of the room allows a lot of light in the space which really suits this beech effect kitchen. The stools and breakfast bar create a relaxed place to sit and eat a snack while still having the large table for family meals. If you like the beech style cabinets then take a look at our Cologne Beech Kitchen.

cologne-beech-main

Similar to John Legends Beech kitchen

 

Giada De Laurentiis

This stunning kitchen is home to American celebrity chef, Giada De Laurentiis, so what more could you expect? The kitchen is her workplace so I’m sure she gave a lot of input in to this one. We love the modern feel and the lights and accessories really bring something extra to it. The large central worktop adds that extra space needed for cooking.

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Big Kitchen Shop spot lights

Hopefully some of these unique designs have given you some inspiration for the perfect new kitchen in your home, even though we can’t splash out the amount these guys probably have we can still take ideas from their designs and use them to fit our own individual budgets.

 

My View

I think the majority of us would agree that the dining room can be labelled one of the most wasted spaces in the home, in our hectic lives we use it incredibly rarely and the room has become terribly misused. The table, instead of being a platform for eating on has essentially evolved into a huge shelf, ready for anything I and the kids dump on it. This dumping includes: post, books, dog leads, spare change and the like.

So why do I no longer have any call for my dining room? Well it’s the kitchens fault I am afraid to say, our dining, entertaining and relaxing time has transferred into the kitchen. It is without doubt the most important room in the house for our family. After a hectic day at work, I just want to cook and have a few drinks in a comfortable informal environment. Having carried out some research, I can say its not only our family home which has undergone the same transition.

The Nations View

Britain can safely be said to be ‘abandoning its dining rooms’ although two thirds of homes have a separate dining room intact, it is used less and less. According to a study carried out by Lloyds Bank Home Insurance; the kitchen is the most valuable room in the home. It’s not surprising either, when you consider the fact that on average we spend one hour and 36 minutes in their every single day and 60% of us prefer entertaining friends and family in the kitchen, opposed to any other room. Indeed, inviting friends round for a ‘Kitchen Supper’ has triggered a national debate. The phrase itself was catapulted to fame when a cabinet minister used it in reference to David Cameron’s meetings with Rebekah Brooks. Obviously, we normal folk can still have Kitchen Suppers without heading to our friends at NO.10.

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Kitchen Entertaining planning

  • Ensure you have an ample amount of comfortable seating, whilst some don’t mind standing around, some do!
  • Plan well ahead, know the meal you are cooking, know your timings and stick to them!
  • Keep the drinks flowing, this doesn’t need any explaining!
  • Keep it relaxed, this isn’t a formal dinner party!

Your Kitchen

Here at Big Kitchen Shop we have the perfect range of Open Plan Kitchens which are simply ideal for cooking, socialising and entertaining people. These contemporary spaces allow you to have a cool but functional entertaining space.

 

Black Gloss Kitchen

Black Gloss Kitchen

 

 

The Golden Temple is located in the Indian city of Amritsar, the temple is also known as the Harmandir Sahib, which translates directly to The Temple of God. Unsurprisingly, the temple is an incredibly sacred place for Sikhs and is one of the world’s most famous Gurdwara (Places of worship) The Temple was first constructed in 1604 but was rebuilt later in 1764.

Located in many Sikh places of worship is a Langar, a communal kitchen or canteen. At such places, food is served to ALL visitors, regardless of their religion or background. Due to the all-encompassing nature of the temple, vegetarian food is served, so everybody can eat together regardless of beliefs, as equals. When eating, men, women and children all sit together, all on the floor, so everybody is on the same level.

Diners eating at the Golden Temple

The largest Langar can be found at the Golden Temple, on an average day it feeds roughly around 40,000 people (around ten thousand people at a time). On special occasions however, the kitchen can feed a staggering 100,000 people a day, so next time you moan about cooking for the entire family at Christmas, think again! Although the meals given are free, the kitchen is supported through donations and willing volunteers!

A volunteer helps prepares some food at the Golden Temple

So how does this huge system operate? As previously mentioned, the staffing of the kitchen is made up largely of volunteers who assist in all areas of food preparation. An example of such work is having two people required to stir the huge cylinders of lentils. On busier days, some processes can become automated; the temple has an automatic Roti machine, which can produce up to 25,000 per hour. On normal days, these Roti’s are usually handmade. After the feast, dining equipment is handed back to some volunteers. They are then washed up to five times before stacked again ready for the next round of diners who eagerly await their meal.

The Aftermath: Volunteers wash up at the Golden Temple

 If like those at the Golden temple, you enjoy cooking for a number of friends; our Open Plan Kitchens are perfect for you. An open plan kitchen is a great way of giving your home the space to host a number of people, without ruining all your carpets! In this space created, a dining area can be created, for a less formal look, why not add a sofa and a TV? Many people also have games consoles in their kitchen now and find that it a great place for a group of mates to get together! Our Gloss White Kitchen is an especially cool place to hang out!

The Big Kitchen Shop Gloss White Kitchen

It’s a common question we get here at Big Kitchen Shop

‘I have decided to purchase a kitchen from yourselves but I am struggling between choosing an electric or gas oven. Which one is most economical?’ It’s certainly a good question!

There are big differences in the costs of cooking with gas and electricity, seen as though cooking takes up a quarter of your yearly energy bill it’s an issue well worth exploring. Figures reveal that gas and electric ovens use around the same amount of energy units, between 200-300 KW a year.

The higher price of electricity over gas does make electric ovens more expensive to run. Those who install a gas oven can expect to save around £35 a year. As a price comparison, if you use your electric cooker for around 90 minutes a day the annual cost would be around £100, the annual costs of a gas oven for the same period of time in use would be around £35.

Industry experts have also warned that long- term, the cost of electricity will rocket compared to that of gas due to government taxes against Electricity. Consumer futures, who work with the Governments Fuel Poverty Advisory group, have investigated this impact on the average consumer’s bills. They forecast that households who use electric heating would see their bill rise by £282 by 2020.

There are also a number of other factors to consider when choosing ovens. We will firstly list the advantages and disadvantages of Gas cookers and then we will cover the advantages and disadvantages of Electric cookers.

Gas Cooker’s

Advantages

  • Gas Hobs offer instant heat output, when flames spread around the bottom of a pain, heat dispersal is working well
  • As previously mentioned, Gas is cheaper than Electricity so you can save yourself a bit of money on this front

Disadvantages

  • Gas Cookers can give out an uneven oven temperature, this is due to the absence of fans in the oven itself, meaning the oven will be hotter at the top than the bottom
  • Gas cookers also need to be installed by a GasSafe qualified engineer.

Electric Cookers

Advantages

  • Electric ovens offer you more control over your oven temperature, fans disperse the heat around evenly
  • In a multi-function oven, you can cook with heat from the top of the oven, the bottom of the oven and even the grill
  • Electric cookers hobs are easier to clean than gas cooker hobs, electric cooker hobs are usually flat and ceramic, making them easy to maintain

Disadvantages

  • Electric cookers cost more to run than gas cookers
  • If your pan is larger than the hob ring, getting up to heat can be a timely process

Here at Big Kitchen Shop we have a great range of both Gas and Electric ovens from the industry leading brands such as Bosch, Rangemaster and Neff. So whatever your choice, you can rest assured you have the best quality products money can buy.

ovens

 

Today, the kitchen takes center stage in our home.  It is our space to entertain, relax and cook for our friends and family. It is often the largest room in a house, making it a hub of the entire family home.  This hasn’t always been the story however; kitchens in the past without technology were simply a functional place for cooking and cleaning.

Prior the 1930’s the kitchen was simply a place for cooking. It was a place to be endured not enjoyed. The 1930’s represented a shift in people’s attitudes towards their kitchen, kitchens in this period evolved from simply a utility room. Kitchen space generally increased and kitchen decoration became more important. Some appliances also became widely available in this period. Kettles, toasters and vacuum cleaners became more commonplace. Most kitchens in this period now had a refrigerator. Wood burning cooking stoves from the previous century were still common place. Small electric and gas cookers were introduced and began to rise in popularity. Just before the 1940’s arrived, fitted kitchens also rose in popularity as did non-integrated cupboards and cabinets.

1930 kitchen

Unsurprisingly, a huge chunk of the 40’s was taken up by the Second World War, which stalled kitchen progress for a time. Accompanying the rush for building new housing after the war, there was a sustained advertising campaign surrounding kitchens. Tiling became popular, as did glass, plastic and enamel splash backs, white tiles were also at the height of popularity. The built in kitchen was now in homes around the country. The kitchen also began to be used as a dining space.

1940s kitchen

The 1950’s onwards really witnessed a revolution in kitchen design, where did this revolution come from? America of course, huge fridges crept in and brightly coloured worktops were popular. Appliances also took off in this period, huge blenders and bins were commonplace. Vintage appliances from this period interestingly remain popular today. The average British kitchen took on a look of American diner.

1950s-kitchen

The 1960’s witnessed the average kitchen size in the UK increase by almost 100 feet. The fitted kitchen really took off; EVERYTHING in this period became integrated. Garish colours were utilised as were risky artistic prints. Flowers and lines embellished absolutely every aspect of the room. Whilst many enjoyed and pursued this psychedelic them many avoided it, in stark contrast space age themes were popular in this period. The main theme was black and white, egg chairs and chrome appliances to finish the look off.

1960s Kitchen

Next on our journey through time takes us to the 70’s. After the bright colours of the previous decades, the British public obviously decided to dull down the colour scheme. Everything became dark wood, including the kitchen units and the tables. The colour scheme of mustard and brown was everywhere. Despite the dull colour scheme, flowers were still present on the tablecloths and crockery!

1970s kitchen

Without further ado onto the 1980’s, the decade of the Falklands War and the toppling of the Berlin Wall. The world was moving and moving fast. Fresh colours arrived on the kitchen scene, including various shades of blue and pink. Natural wood units were popular, giving the impression of a country home kitchen, this often led to a cramped and dark feel however, and this was combated with bright lighting. Appliances were tucked away, built into units especially. Microwaves were also popular in this period, it was claimed they could cut cooking time by 75%!

1980s kitchen

The 90’s, America invaded Iraq, the Soviet Union collapsed and the Cold War officially ended. Kitchens were now open plan, light and airy. The island was also popular in this period. Appliances were geared around making food easier and faster, food processors and blenders were popular. The kitchen in this period also took on an off white colour scheme, with brushes of chrome adding a contemporary touch.

1990s kitchen

At the turn of the millennium, kitchens took on neutral colours too with magnolia, stone and blues. Kitchen appliances were also clad in chrome in many kitchens. The rise in popularity of the open plan kitchen spaces transformed the kitchen from a cooking space into a living space.

2000 kitchen

 

Today there are a huge range of kitchens available, in all styles.  Here at Big Kitchen Shop we are constantly researching the market, to ensure we bring you the most current and very best Modern Kitchens and Contemporary Kitchens.

This subject got us thinking: What decade was your favorite and why!? Comment below!

What would you do with one million pounds?

Well we have a few ideas already but decided to dig deeper and head to the gloomy depths of internet forums to see what other ideas people had and decided to share. We found that most people would buy a nice house outright and maybe a nice car to park on the drive, some would buy a boat, some a helicopter, some a ridiculously fast supercar and some of the younger generation would party their way through their funds, holidaying for a good few years.

It has to be said though, a million pounds whilst a substantial amount of money is not THAT much in today’s economic climate, you certainly couldn’t enjoy a lavish lifestyle for too long. Although an extreme case, you have to drag your mind back to the November of 2002. Michael Carroll won a staggering £9,736,131 aged only 19. After spending his money on all of life’s indulgencies including cars, quad bikes, parties, jewellery he declared himself bankrupt and returned to his job seekers allowance of £46 a week.

Even Carroll couldn’t have been classed as super rich, but what do you do when you have a spare million burning a hole in your back pocket? You already have the dream house, the dream car, the yacht, the holidays, the businesses… Well thanks to the Fiore di Cristallo kitchen you now have your answer, a kitchen which costs… you guessed it… £1,000,000. The kitchen is Claudio Celiberti-designed and is named the ‘Fiore di Cristallo’

kitchen

So what sort of bang do you get for your buck when your purchase this six figure kitchen? Well the bespoke crystal island in the centre of the Kitchen is worth a cool £36,850, the kitchen is lit by a £26,400 Swarovski crystal chandelier, the crystal basin costs £2,680 and is filled by water running through Chrome and crystal taps valued at £1,600 each, the stone and copper worktop will cost you £6,850. The 27 cabinets cost £400,000 alone.

Claudio-Celiberti-launch-3-1024x682

 If you think that sounds expensive, wait until you hear about the appliances. The appliances are custom made for the Fiore di Cristallo by Gaggenau and will set you back around £24,000. The fridge will cost you £5,000, a wine cooler would be £2,762 and an espresso coffee machine at £1,714. Nice extras if you can afford them.

crystal_kitchen_003

Now we know what is on your mind, what does the owner of a £1,000,000 kitchen keep in the fridge?! Well we imagine that Almas Beluga caviar is in there somewhere. This caviar comes all the way from Iran and is both incredibly rare and expensive. A kilo of such caviar in a 24 Karat gold tin will set you back £16,000. For those on a slightly smaller budget, a smaller tin is available at a bargain basement price of £800.  Of course that Caviar needs to be washed down by something, a bottle of Cristal champagne perhaps? Or perhaps a bottle of Shipwrecked 1907 Heidsieck, the world’s most expensive champagne. These bottles will set you back £180,000 each. For that price, you not only get a brilliant bottle of champagne… but an unusual story too.

caviar

The story starts during the first world war, on board a ship destined for the imperial court of Tsar Nicholas II of Russia. The boat was torpedoed by a German submarine and the bottles of champagne on board sank to their mirky grave. In 1998 these bottles were resurrected from the ship by a diving mission and are now sold worldwide as items of historical interest.

champagne

If you want an amazing Contemporary Kitchen without the six figure price tag we can help. From the stunning Crystal White Kitchen to the trendy Avola Champagne Kitchen we have a kitchen to suit every taste. We also guarantee to beat any genuine quote from a national competitor.

We want to know what you would do with £1,000,000… Comment below!