Be prepared to pay for quality – a high quality kitchen with good quality appliances and materials will outlast a cheap one. The longer a kitchen lasts the more sustainable it is. Go for something solid and built to last.
Consider whether you can salvage anything from your old kitchen. Perhaps the cabinets are fine, but the doors and worktops need replacing. We did one refurbishment where lovely high quality doors had been fitted to cheap cabinets – we replaced the cabinets and worktops, but kept and re-used the doors.
Maybe your kitchen needs a bit of a refresh or just a few design tweaks rather than a complete overhaul. You may not need to start from scratch! For an example of a kitchen that we did an upgrade on, and a refurbishment, rather than start from scratch: click here
Replace old inefficient appliances and always go for the highest energy rating you can afford.
Another idea would be to pick an induction hob for your new kitchen – an energy efficient option.
Think about material miles – how far has your kitchen travelled? We source everything we can from the UK, and ideally, as local as possible. Miles that your materials have travelled can make a big contribution to the environmental footprint of your new kitchen.
Be cautious with granite – some retailers recently stopped selling some ranges of granite due to child slavery concerns in India. Make sure you know where it’s come from and if it’s very cheap then be suspicious. Engineered stone is a better choice, but it’s worth considering recycled glass as a beautiful and highly sustainable alternative.
Wood is another great eco-friendly option.
Have a look round reclamation yards and see what you can find. You can often pick up reclaimed worktops, handles etc. although they’re not always cheaper than buying new.
Many of our kitchens contain elements of reclaimed wood. All the cabinets in this kitchen were made from pine reclaimed from the floor of a local school stage.
The iroko worktops in this kitchen were made from old school lab benches.
And the oak kitchen island in this kitchen was reclaimed from church pews in the Sheffield Cathedral Church.