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11th May 2018

FIVE MINUTES WITH… SIMON FROM HARVEY JONES

We are delighted to announce that kitchen specialists, Harvey Jones have opened their doors on Level 1.

To find out more about the brand, we invited Simon, from their brand new Birmingham showroom, to take part in our ‘Five Minutes With’ series

1. Tell us a bit about yourself and what you do.
Hi, I’m Simon, 35 years old and I design kitchens. Most of my free time is taken up by the two-year-old that has taken up residence in my home, demanding food and attention but I am assured this will only last a couple of decades!

2. What are you most looking forward to moving to the new Mailbox showroom?
I’m looking forward to working in the city where I grew up, but it is certainly very different now. The center is unrecognisable in places; the redevelopments are very impressive and there is a positive buzz around the area. The Mailbox is a fantastic location with great stores and nightlife and I’m looking forward to working in this wonderful environment.

3. What is your design mantra?
Our kitchens are built to last a lifetime, so I really approach kitchen design with that in mind. It must be beautiful but ultimately practical as the client may be living with the kitchen for the next 30 years.

4. What is your kitchen like at home?
Unfortunately not as nice as a Harvey Jones kitchen!

5. What inspires your work? Where do you go for inspiration?
Design magazines and other designs from colleagues all help build inspiration, but I am first and foremost led by the client’s requirements. All our cabinetry is handmade and to order and this means we have an almost unlimited variety of cabinetry and layouts for our clients. I listen to what they like, how they live and what they need and then we design the kitchen in collaboration.

6. What are your first considerations when designing a new kitchen?
My first consideration is the client and how they live. The main question is; how can I design a space that will make their lives easier, more comfortable and more pleasant?

7. What projects have you found the most rewarding and why?
All my projects are rewarding in different ways and I don’t think I could rank them. It’s great when you produce a beautiful kitchen for a client who has a limited budget and never believed they could have handmade British furniture. I also enjoy a challenge, for example when you have technical challenges like listed 500-year-old timber frame wattle and daub houses that are totally foreign to straight lines!

8. What do you try to avoid?
Gimmicks.

9. How has kitchen design changed over the last five years?
Kitchen design has adapted with the way we live, and this has been changing for the last 10-15 years. The demand for large multi-purpose kitchen/dining/living rooms, through remodeling or extensions, has influenced kitchen design and led to a number of challenges. How do we make a kitchen that works as a practical space but also somewhere to relax? How do we make best use of a large space without crowding it or making it feel like an empty warehouse?

10. What kitchen trends do you predict in 2018?
The trend for larger multi-use spaces will continue and darker colours will also be popular. We don’t get too distracted by immediate trends. Trends are, by definition, short lived and our cabinetry certainly isn’t so our designs are deliberately timeless and can be updated over their considerable lifetime.

11. Do you have any tips for homeowners embarking on a new kitchen project?
Commission a designer as soon as you can in the process, especially when there’s building work. Also, leave yourself plenty of time to plan, consider and research your choices. The more time and flexibility there is in the design phase, the better the outcome will be.

Find out more at www.harveyjones.com.

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