Grand Designs kitchens: 5 memorable schemes

Inspired use of materials, layout and colour lift these kitchens out of the ordinary

By Hugh Metcalf | 17 November 2020

There have been some amazing Grand Designs kitchens over the course of show’s more than two decades history. Next to structural features such as glazing, the kitchen is one of the most crucial aspect to get right in a self build or renovation project. This selection of five outstanding designs stand testament to their owners creative vision and construction endeavours.

Oak and steel

The inspiration for Harry and Briony Anscombe’s home came from a house in the classic 1980s film Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. The Ben Rose House is by architect A James Speyer. It was built in 1953 and hailed as an innovation in steel-framed domestic architecture. Harry, Briony and their three children Alice, Eleni and Rocky, live in their tribute to the original, which has more walls, less glass, and is bigger.

Grand Designs kitchens, an open-plan design with a big central island

The kitchen and dining area benefits from structural glazing in one corner. Photo: Mark Bolton

The open-plan kitchen is undoubtedly the centrepiece. With cabinets handmade by Charlie Turner from oak-veneered plywood, there are utility-chic stainless steel work surfaces. A big island stands in front of the run of wall units, offering plenty of storage space and a place to perch for relaxed dining.

View of the oak veneered plywood cabinets with inset handles

The couple ensured the kitchen and dining area is big enough for guests. Photo: Mark Bolton

Contemporary curves

In the Lincolnshire Fenlands stands a modern roundhouse inspired by the ancient Celtic building tradition. Named Iceni House, it was built under Paragraph 79 of the National Planning Policy Framework. This regulation allows for new homes on rural sites. But they must be of outstanding design merit.

Looking through the doorway into the semi-circular kitchen - Grand Designs kitchens

The curved kitchen follows the lines of the circular building. Photo: Fiona Walker-Arnott

Amy and Paul Wilkinson’s self build adventure came with many challenges. The timber company had never worked on a circular house before. So, it was a relief when the laser-cut timber panel structure fitted together perfectly  on site. As Grand Designs kitchens go, this one is certainly unique. From its curves to Paul and Amy’s signature style.
Bespoke cabinets echoe the shape of the building. The blue quartz Caesarstone work surface features a meandering lazy river sink. The couple’s inspiration came from a similar model seen at the supplier’s showroom.