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Imagination Unfettered

Redefining the kitchen with a bespoke, design-led approach.


At the core of Williams & Sons is a rich family tradition of exceptional craftsmanship and design, which has been deeply ingrained in its DNA since the inception of its journey over 45 years ago. Beginning with Tim Williams’ passion for artisan furniture, and extending to the custom construction of classical guitars and hand-built boats, here there is a legacy rooted in a commitment to precision, hand-crafted joinery.


As the reins passed to his son, Dale Williams, the tradition of excellence continued. Embracing craftsmanship at the highest level, each kitchen is handcrafted in their own Exeter workshops by a team of skilled joiners. The result is a testament to the mastery of kitchen craft; every plinth, join, and surface is meticulously hand-built, making these kitchen designs a discerning choice for owners of both contemporary and heritage homes. Williams & Sons’ philosophy revolves around a design-led approach and a commitment to placing their customers at the forefront of every decision. There’s no cookie-cutter approach. Williams & Sons appreciate that each home, kitchen space, and way of living in it is personal. The resulting designs seamlessly integrate beauty and functionality while catering to the unique needs and preferences of each client. 



Such is the importance laid on a design-first mindset, that each client is assigned a Williams & Sons designer. The whole process is consultative, adopting something of an architectural approach, with mood boards and 3D CAD design drawings bringing each kitchen to life. Site visits with your personal designer come as standard, and it will be this same designer who undertakes the initial consultation; who is involved in brainstorming the gathering of information; who will take the measurements and produce the site report; who will get to know every nook and cranny of your kitchen; who will make the final inspections and dress your kitchen for photography. 


Each designer is fully invested in their respective projects – so much so that every Williams & Sons’ kitchen they design becomes a portfolio piece for them. The designers are fully supported by extremely experienced technical and project management teams. It’s this level of expertise, personalisation and attention to detail that empowers customers to make bold decisions, which in turn sets these kitchens apart. 


A kitchen fitted into one of Cornwall’s most prestigious properties nestled on the coast near Falmouth, is a case in point. The brief was a serene blend of practicality and elegance. This project showcases how a classic Shaker style can be elevated with modern touches to create a beautiful and functional space.


The homeowners approached Williams & Sons with a vision for a kitchen that would be the tranquil and inviting heart of their home. The kitchen needed to work on two levels, aesthetically and practically, as it would be for everyday use. After thoughtful discussions and planning, the design settled on a light blue Shaker-style kitchen based on the Hepworth design, but customised to ensure the aesthetic was ‘just-so’, and perfectly aligned with the client’s vision. “The focal point of this kitchen is the cabinetry, finished in a soothing light blue which evokes a sense of calm and sophistication. The Shaker-style doors, with their clean lines and classic profiles, bring a timeless quality to the kitchen. This choice of colour, combined with the traditional design, made the space feel welcoming and open. Blue was chosen to pick up the year-round tones of the sea, connecting the outside and inside through the glazed frontage of the dining area,” explains Dale. 



The spacious island, designed to be the kitchen hub, is central to the layout. It provides ample workspace and storage and serves as a casual dining area where family and friends can gather. Deep drawers and integrated shelving enhance its practicality, ensuring everything from cooking utensils to everyday essentials is within easy reach. “The island was a totally bespoke concept in reply to the customer’s desire for a unique, almost sculptural centrepiece.  While this request initially scared myself and my design team, we found exceptional artisan finishing experts to deliver a patina brass finish on a unique, but also practical, storage unit. The antique brass elements tied the bold island into the design and made it sit comfortably within the space,” adds Dale.


Dale continues: “To complement the light blue cabinetry, we selected quartz countertops that offer both durability and a polished look. These countertops are beautiful and practical, providing a surface that is easy to clean and maintain; perfect for a busy family kitchen.” The existing stone mantle was retained and the design was worked up to include this, while not letting it overpower the room.

 

“Lighting plays a crucial role in enhancing a kitchen’s ambience,” adds Dale. “We worked with the client to select antique feature pendants which were installed above the island, providing focused illumination to highlight the workspace while adding a touch of class to the overall design.”


Final touches included handles with an antique brass finish, knurled to incorporate a modern element as a complement to some other traditional refurbishments, while the open shelves allow for personal touches and practical storage. The exposed wooden beams and natural stone flooring further anchor the design. This kitchen is a testament to how careful design and quality craftsmanship can transform a space, reiterated in the owner’s testimonial: “Williams & Sons Kitchens have beautifully realised our vision for a tranquil and practical kitchen. The light blue Shaker style and thoughtful design details have transformed our kitchen into the heart of our home, perfectly combining elegance and everyday functionality.”


The Barn kitchen in Hicks Blue was built using the Napier door and designed in answer to the client’s vision of a focal point for their modern barn conversion; one that would marry classic design with practical features. The result is a stunning centrepiece which combines traditional charm with contemporary functionality. After a detailed consultation, the Barn kitchen was chosen for its robust legs and deep-panelled doors, giving an air of traditional British elegance.


Central to the design is a large, handmade kitchen island painted in the rich hue of ‘Hicks Blue’. This island contrasts beautifully with the surrounding cabinets in ‘French Grey Pale’, creating a sophisticated two-tone palette. The island is not just a visual statement; it’s designed for everyday family use, offering ample seating and practical storage, including a single oven to complement the central range cooker. The choice of a white 20mm Dekton marble worktop adds to the island’s aesthetic appeal and provides a durable, hard-wearing surface. The rest of the kitchen continues this theme of durability and style, with a traditional sink and mixer tap from Blanco and an Everhot range cooker set against a white tiled splashback.


Attention to detail is evident in the selection of Crofts & Assinder’s Knightsbridge handles. A row of pendant lights, carefully chosen to complement the tall ceilings and illuminate the island perfectly, further elevates the design. Exposed wooden beams and oak bar stools add warmth and organic accents to the space, tying the entire design together. “Designing a kitchen in such a wonderful home is always a pleasure. The way this kitchen ties the whole living space together is truly remarkable. Fusing traditional and modern elements give it a unique wow factor while being highly practical for everyday use,” comments our designer Dan. He excels in blending traditional and modern elements. With a keen eye for detail and a passion for creating practical yet beautiful spaces,  his designs are renowned for their timeless appeal and functionality.


The final project we look at was created for furniture and lighting designer, Tom Raffield, who transformed a dilapidated Cornish gamekeeper’s lodge into an expansive and unique family home that was featured on Channel 4’s Grand Designs. At the heart of this home is a bespoke, wooden Scandinavian-inspired Williams & Sons kitchen. Another of Dale’s designs, this  exemplifies the company’s truly bespoke approach.


“Each Williams & Sons design process is different,” explains Dale, “sometimes the designers have free-range on ideas, while in this case, Tom had a clear vision and we added in our technical expertise to deliver that. Collaboration was critical to the success of this exciting project, and Dale worked closely with Tom throughout the creative process to ensure that this kitchen delivered on its promise. The kitchen, illuminated by one of Tom Raffield’s unique pendants, featured a custom-built island, wooden cabinets, leather handles, and stone worktops. 


All of these kitchen designs prove that the only limit on what you can achieve with a Williams & Sons’ kitchen is your imagination. Choice of cabinetry, worktops, appliances and accessories are boundless. In the Exeter workshop, artisan cabinet-makers and furniture builders hand-build and hand-finish each kitchen using a combination of traditional techniques and modern machinery. 



Williams & Sons is part of the Kettle Co group, established in 2007. The group has built an enviable reputation across the South West, with Williams & Sons kitchens  available to view in Kettle Co showrooms in St Austell and Plymouth. The company also works in partnership with other passionate independent kitchen retailers,  including Alexander Paul Kitchens in Honiton, which hosts an accredited showroom. 


Each and every person involved in creating a bespoke Williams & Sons kitchen, from inception through to completion,  is passionate about their work and an expert in their field. Whether it’s Shaker-inspired, ornate and opulent, modern and minimalist or iconically British, each design has a common thread – quality and craftsmanship. Finding out how a Williams & Sons handmade kitchen could elevate your home is simple, book a design appointment with one of their expert kitchen designers today to find out how to make your kitchen dream a reality. “Our vision is simple, to design and build the finest handmade kitchens in the UK,” concludes Dale. 


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