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  • Writer's pictureTony De Wynter

A Breathtaking Reality

Updated: Nov 7, 2023


A beautiful West Yorkshire property boasting outstanding rural views ticked serious boxes for couple Christopher Dean (Olympic Gold medalist and Dancing on Ice judge) and Karen Barber (professional ice dancer and head of coaching for Dancing On Ice), with just the kitchen space needing to make the grade. We discover how combining their ideas with those of the KC Design House team led to “better decisions” being made and a truly breathtaking kitchen design becoming a reality.



The Brief


Olympic gold medalist and Dancing On Ice judge Christopher Dean and professional ice dancer and head of coaching for Dancing On Ice Karen Barber, found a dream property in West Yorkshire that had it all - the perfect footprint and space, a sought-after location and far-reaching views over the surrounding countryside. Some of the best outdoor vistas could be admired from the kitchen, but unfortunately, the interior scenes didn’t quite measure up. “We loved everything about the house, but the kitchen was impractical and tired,” recalls Karen. “We know our sense of style, so had a good idea of what our dream kitchen would look like - a calm, modern and clutter-free space - but we needed someone we could trust to bring it to life.”



The Design


Having been recommended KC Design House by their estate agent, Karen and Christopher visited the showroom and were instantly impressed with the exceptional attention to detail and choice. “You only had to look at the displays to see the quality and workmanship,” says Karen. “There was something for everyone, and it felt like a jigsaw being able to take the pantry and units of one kitchen and the worktops and textiles of another to piece together the perfect design for us.”




The Process


KC’s managing director, Richard, and senior designer, Charlotte, suggested some structural changes to the existing room that would help open up the space and make the most of the breathtaking views without disrupting the house's original footprint. This included taking out the dining room wall and adding floor-to-ceiling windows. “We figured this was a dream opportunity to create our dream kitchen,” says Karen. “Richard and Charlotte guided us through the process; they didn’t tell us what to do but made sense of our ideas and the logistics to help bring it all together.”


When it came to the building work and kitchen installation, Karen and Christopher felt equally looked after. “It worked out really well as the bulk of the work was taken care of while we were away working and renting in London. The KC team are so considerate and understands what a big deal a new kitchen is for people. Everyone was so professional, and we didn’t need to worry about a thing.”




The Results


Perfectly in line with their original vision for a modern, calm and clutter-free space, the open kitchen, dining room, and snug has an airy, relaxing and contemporary feel, flowing easily from one area to another. The floor-to-ceiling windows invite copious amounts of light and stunning countryside views indoors, with the gentle green hues of the surrounding landscape effortlessly complementing the neutral interior colour palette. “Richard and Charlotte were so easy to work with, from the kitchen design to helping us achieve our vision through the colour scheme, window dressings and bar stool fabrics,” says Karen. “Not only did their skills help finesse our ideas, but they helped us to make better decisions, like choosing induction over gas.”



Another area where Karen and Christopher took the guidance of the KC team was the position of the kitchen sink, resulting in a beautifully unique design feature. “Richard suggested moving the sink away from the window to the back wall, which I couldn’t understand initially - but then they put a gold marble-like glass on the wall above the sink that reflects the outdoor views. It’s so clever and such a lovely feature.”



KC Client Notes


What do you love most about the kitchen design?


The detail is what makes it, and the level of workmanship.


And what reaction does it get from visitors?


They always comment on the beautiful views from the kitchen.


What is your favourite feature of the space?


The big pantry. I love to be organised; everything has its place in containers and Tupperware. It’s like art to me!


Is there anything about the space that you would change?


Not a thing. I’m literally excited to come downstairs and see it every day. It’s a wonderful, calm space that we love to be in.


Why would you recommend KC Design House?


If you want a dream kitchen, you’ve got to work with people you trust 100%, and that’s exactly how we felt about KC. You only have to look at their kitchens to see the quality of their work.





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