Kitchen design thread



I think I’ve whittled it down to Wrens and Benchmarx. I only realised yesterday that’s there’s a Howdens, Benchmarx, Screwfix and Toolstation on a little industrial estate in Whyteleafe near where I live. That’ll save me having to go to the Purley Way.

I love the look of this from Benchmarx.


Those tiles are well nice, but a mate has them in his new place and they are a right ballache to clean, especially behind the hob. Everyone has metro tiled or glass splash backs, but they are easy to wipe down.


that reminds me. Need to get in touch with Wren to complain. Kitchen fitted in April 2016 and both sink plug things are broken already. Well, not broken, the rubber seals have completelt perished. Would have expected them to last a lot longer than that. Also - if you are going with Wren I heard quite a few horror stories about their in house fitters. Thankfully we went with someone we know to fit so didn’t need to use theirs…



Do not get those kind of tiles.


Yeah I doubt I’ll get them to fit it.

Someone at work is having their bathroom installed for a third time by Wickes, it’s a total botch job. Similarly a lady at work had a disaster with B&Q.

My brother in law is a builder but he’s recently got a big contract for an Housing Association and also a couple of big estate agents. He’s not sure he can commit to his own jobs, plus previously when he’s done stuff and a proper job comes up he does that thinking I won’t mind waiting. I’m not sure I want that with a kitchen.

Might be awkward getting another builder.


I know someone who had a Wren kitchen fitted, and they were very impressed with their guys. But it’s the customer service that I’ve heard horror stories about.

Similarly, brother-in-law had a nightmare with Wickes fitters. So who knows what the best course of action is?


learn carpentry and build your own kitchen from scratch ?


It’s an option. I’ve already got a saw, a hammer and a drill, so I’m halfway there.


Just to be clear, the first part is optional (see also plumbing).

Learn on the job. Fun AND educational (and expensive and dangerous).


Yeah your probably right, I do like @plasticniki metro style tiles. So probs like that.

I’ve now got a Wrens design appointment on Thursday, benchmarx chap coming to measure on Friday and a Benchmarx and Magnet designer on Saturday. Although I’m tempted to cancel Magnet.

Got two builders lined up to quote. I’m going to check out how busy my brother in law is. That would be the obvious option but sometimes it’s awkward with family as I feel bad picking things out if something’s not right. If it’s someone else I can be a picky and not care too much.

These are the tiles in the current kitchen, pretty sure they are as old as me. They are horrendous.


We uncovered some quite exceptional stencils when removing cupboards yesterday


When I replaced our cooker hood earlier this year I found a basketball behind the panelling.


We had a bathroom & en-suite done by Wickes. The guy on the desk when we put our order together was fine, the fitters were acceptable in terms of work done. Mostly. But the communication and customer service was rage-inducingly pisspoor. I’d probably just get independent builders in and point to stuff in catalogues if I were doing it again.


We had our first kitchen design by Wrens earlier. The original price was apparently £24k + £5k if we wanted it installed by them. Yeah right. Then they gave a discount so if was £13k + £5k. Still too much, although it does include appliances (valued at £4,200 haha). Then he did the spiel about getting the managers discount and reckoned he could get significantly more off, if we paid a desposit today which I no to as I want more quotes.

Looked nice in the plans but since realised it doesn’t actually work with our kitchen.

I think I’m pretty much decided on Benchmarx now.


We’ve got our designs from Wren, Benchmarx and Magnet, all pretty similar.

Benxhmarx chap definitely seems more clued up, but preferred a Magnet design units. Pretty much ruled out Wren, but might use them as a negotiating tool.

Wren were £13k without install which would be £18k, but it was so obvious they’d lower it. Includes all Bosch appliances, which I double checked against AO and it isn’t much more.

Magnet reckons £15.5k with all AEG appliances, including install which I’m more comfortable with than Wren installers.

Won’t get the Benchmarx quote till next week as it goes via the builder. Might use that against Magnet trade.

Might get these tiles.

Sorry that’s really boring.


Wickes fucking us around with the worktops. Out of stock apparently so they’re going to send us some temporary ones which my builder will have to remove at a later date. They’ve agreed to cover the extra labour costs, not that he’ll actually charge us. Hopefully we won’t be waiting too long, but it does mean it definitely won’t all be finished this week as originally planned.


And now they’re not sending us temporary worktops, the bastards! Said that it will be at least two more weeks until they have them back in stock, so we’ve sourced them elsewhere (more expensive) and they are paying for them and are going to give us a “goodwill gesture”, whatever that will amount to. Hopefully will now have them by the end of the week or early next week.

So yeah, anyone thinking of using Wickes, be careful!


Just found the Magnet quote in my spam folder, while she said she could go to £15,500 (still too high) it’s actually come through at £17,900.

Wrens comparable quote was £18,243.


I sent a nice polite email saying it’s to high and we’re going to check out Benxhmarx and Howdens.

I wonder if they’ll come back?

I think the quotes are about double what they are worth?


used these twice now if it helps

been pretty great.

assuming it’s wood ones you’re after


Cheers, but we have actually already sourced them. Not sure where the missus got them from in the end, but they’re being delivered today, apparently.

Doesn’t look like that site do the ones we’re having anyway, which are these: