Kitchens are often the most-used and least-loved spaces in a home. And with space in such short supply, many holiday home owners settle for a kitchen that is ‘functional’ and focus more on making bedrooms and the living room stylish and comfortable. But it’s time to give kitchens the love they deserve! However compact your caravan kitchen is, with a few tips and tricks you can transform it into a space you want to linger in, and an attractive centrepiece to any caravan. Last year, when we gave our 2010 Willerby Bluebird a major mid-century-modern makeover, we knew that this is where our family and friends and guests would be mixing cocktails, cooking dinners to eat outside, and (in the winter) making endless cups of tea. Today, it’s one of my favourite spaces in the caravan - which means I actually do the dishes…..
1. IT'S A FAST FACELIFT
Kitchen units occupy a huge amount of visual space in any caravan kitchen, so painting, wallpapering or replacing cupboard doors is an immediate transformation. We looked into replacing the units entirely, but the more we thought about it, this seemed too pricey and wasteful. I’m really happy that we settled on keeping the original units, simply replacing our doors with MDF wood, which we painted olive, using a brilliant sustainable paint brand, COAT (coatpaints.com). We sourced some vintage wooden handles, makes a big difference with just a few twists of a screwdriver.
2. GET PLAYFUL WITH PATTERNS
Because a kitchen wall is dominated by the units, these wall spaces make a great opportunity to wallpaper in statement prints or bold colours, particularly if you go for fun patterns that might be a little too much covering an entire blank wall.
My friend and Club Jupiter business partner Whinnie Williams is founder of Poodle & Blonde (poodleandblonde.com), and she designs cinematic wallpapers and fabrics. We knew we wanted her Money Tree wallpaper in Bamboo somewhere in the caravan, and I love the vintage vibes it brings to our kitchen.
3. SHOW OFF, OR STORE?
I have never had a sizeable kitchen with adequate storage in my life, so I’ve come up with what I call the show-or-store principle. Basically, if your crockery or glassware is pretty enough to be shown off, keep it visible, either on a shelf, or on the counter, or rack. Save that storage space for uglier but undeniably functional utensils, that are better kept out sight; I’m thinking big blenders and pressure cookers. If your appliances are going to be stuck out in the open, the good news is that Smeg (smeg.com) and John Lewis (johnlewis.com) sell genuinely gorgeous appliances that look fab on the counter. Dalmatian-print kettle and toaster are a Poodle & Blonde collaboration with Haden (hadenappliances.com).