Handmade kitchens are built to last a lifetime, so if it’s to renovate, improve or upgrade your kitchen the most important factor is to get it right from the start! At Nicholas Bridger Handmade Kitchens, we speak with our clients to get a feel on what their preferred kitchen design would be, and how it can make the most out of the space available. Another important question we ask and get our clients to think about is how the kitchen will be used. Will it be used for your culinary skills to become a chef in your own home, or a place to relax and gather with family and friends?

To help get you started on your dream kitchen here are some of our top kitchen tips…

Getting prepared…

Firstly, the design process needs to run smoothly with careful thinking of the kitchen layout and where essential items will be placed within the kitchen such as the oven and hob. At this stage you should have an idea on how your kitchen will be used and this will influence the type of storage needed and how they will be fitted into the kitchen design.

Thinking about the layouts…

L-shaped kitchens are a classic style and allow extra worktop and floor space, as well as storage room. It is made up of two adjoining walls that meet in one corner to form an ‘L’ shaped connected with worktops. This particular layout works well in small kitchens getting the most out of them and creating an illusion of more space.

U-shaped kitchens make the most of the available space you have and offers plenty of storage space and worktop areas, with no wasted space. It can be made up of three walls or three sides in a shape of a ‘U’, and is the perfect layout for when you are not sure on what layout to have in your dream kitchen. The U-shaped layout is an efficient kitchen style, making it easier for chefs to access various areas of the kitchen, and is probably the most practical of kitchen layouts.

Galley kitchens pack in plenty of storage and work area space. They are most efficient when it comes to cooking, and they can feature a single or double run of units on either side and a corridor down the middle. An island can also be incorporated into the design to replace a run, and become part of the kitchens functionality, or generate a divider in an open-plan space.

The kitchen island can be a way of adding extra functionality and storage to your space, as well as a seating area. With an island you can entertain guests, prepare food and form a boundary between the cooking zone and living/dining area. Islands can be long and slim that run parallel to the work area, neat and round in a smaller space, or built on a larger scale that can house a sink and appliances.

The ‘kitchen triangle’ is made up of the sink (wet zone), oven (hot zone) and fridge (cold zone), where the three main areas are unblocked and have easy access to them, and are within good reach of one another to waste time moving from one end of the kitchen to the other. If you drew lines from each appliance they would all connect to create a triangle, hence the phrase ‘kitchen triangle’. This appliance layout is a great way to create a harmonious atmosphere that will provide you with everyday food prep a delight.

The Nicholas Bridger in-house designers have the knowledge, experience and creativity flair that will inspire you to create a kitchen layout that is both satisfying and functional. When it comes to the installation of the kitchen, we need to know whether there are building works planned at the point of the survey, as we won’t survey the kitchen until after any structural works or re-wiring projects are completed.

Measurements that fit…

Each kitchen that is handmade by Nicholas Bridger are beautifully crafted to every millimetre for a perfect fit. If your property is built with loving historic features or the tightest of corners and tricky alcoves our handmade furniture can be built around this leaving no space wasted, and the features shining through.

Choosing the right style and design…

Every kitchen design by Nicholas Bridger is bespoke to you and your home, with the design adapting to suit you and your family’s needs. With a bespoke handmade kitchen from Nicholas Bridger you can choose the number of cupboards and drawers that you need to fit in with the perfect layout. We have many manufacturers who supply us with luxury worktops and beautiful coloured paint, so the selection you have is huge. And with the kitchens being hand painted the choice is endless when it comes to colour.

Our Classic Shaker kitchen is a beautifully crafted in-frame shaker style with clean lines, a cock beaded front frame, recessed panel doors and an in-line or recessed plinth. This style in particular works beautifully in all homes of all ages and styles and tells a story.

Our Traditional Shaker kitchens feature a luxurious appearance with an exquisite deep set and raised and fielded panel. It can make a real statement in a large, open-plan kitchen in the countryside for example.

Our Modern Shaker is a fresh take on the traditional shaker style with clean lines, multi-paneling on doors and drawers is possible. It works well in a newly renovated home that delivers modern aesthetics, among others.

Our Contemporary In-Frame Kitchens are Hand painted & Slab Fronted in the latest design trend for a handmade kitchen. You can choose handles or opt to have it handleless; this style is a head-turning new design that we have added to the collection.

Our Contemporary Wood Grain kitchens feature exotic wood veneers in a range of textures, colours and finishes such as high-gloss, matt, book-matched or grain-matched veneer.


Our Contemporary Solid Acrylic High-gloss kitchens offer a unique and extremely hardwearing surface, to suit modern tastes.


Perfect storage solutions…

The fun part of designing the kitchen is the planning and design stages. During these processes you can plan your storage in with them adapting to your needs and suiting your lifestyle and creating a bespoke kitchen that is bespoke to you. There are a number of solutions available, for example, if you are a keen cook with a large family, pull-out pantries, double height larders or walk-in pantries can be a option. If your kitchen is going to be the heart of socialising, a wine cooler is a great idea to save space in your family fridge. If you want to add seating to the kitchen island, we can incorporate a breakfast bar into the island design. Open shelving with bespoke lighting where you can display your favourite pieces can look amazing and can free up cupboard space for more functional items and appliances that you don’t want on show.

Finish your kitchen with character…

Every kitchen and home are different. There are many challenging features such as chimney breasts, sloping ceilings, alcoves, exposed wooden beams or large windows that are assets to the property and enhance the look and individuality of the space. Nicholas Bridger and his team can help you to select colours that are best suited to the area you have, maximise the space and create defined zones. They will also get to know you personally that will help them to show you what other elements you can add to the kitchen design to form personality into your kitchen. Every Nicholas Bridger kitchen is built with using only the finest materials, hand painted in quality paint from respectable companies and finished to the highest possible standard.

What to do now…

Handmade kitchens by Nicholas Bridger are built from beautiful raw materials including Oak, Walnut, Pine and Tulipwood, and kitchen styles including Traditional, Classic and Modern Shakers, and the latest Contemporary In-Frame Slab. You can find our beautiful showroom in Bishop’s Stortford where many of our popular styles are available to see, with the high quality of our workmanship standing out. Take a casual stroll around taking in our lovingly crafted furniture, or have a specific design and project in mind, our team will be on hand to ensure you and everything are taken care of.

Contact us today- we look forward to hearing from you!