The dream cooker... the Rangemaster Elan in Royal Pearl.
The dream cooker… the Rangemaster Elan in Royal Pearl.

We’re lucky insomuch that our previous kitchen was really nothing to write home about. It’s the only room we didn’t ever touch – bar a lick of paint in preparation for selling – and it was on our to-do list for years. It’s wasn’t huge and the units were about 20 years old so had definitely seen better days, plus I’d been been living with a cooker where only two hob rings out of four work and a far-too-small integrated fridge which is prone to puddling water in the bottom.
So it’s not like I’ll miss it – although it’s a damn sight more functional than the cottage’s minuscule eight-foot-square kitchen.
One of my first conditions of the move was that I finally get the cooker of my dreams. It’s been such a long time coming – we first seriously looked at cookers about three years ago when we were planning to do our kitchen and whittled it down to one of two Rangemaster stunners; the Elan and the Classic Deluxe. Oh, we toyed with the idea of an Aga (dual fuel rather than full-on Aga) and fell in love with the styling and the gorgeous colours but they’re just soooo expensive and they’re both smaller and less energy-efficient than the Rangemaster options.
Sadly, having taken another good look around and going round the houses as to how we’re going to fit a full range cooker in – including debating knocking down walls! – I’ve finally conceded defeat. There was just no practical way to squeeze in a big cooker, plus other essential appliances, and actually have room to manoeuvre. So my dream cooker has once again been put on the backburner until we start the extension.
But with my heart set on a range, I’ve found a couple of smaller options which might fit the bill. The dream would be the Aga City60 – it’s a gorgeous mini version of the coveted Aga – but with an eye-watering price tag of around £5,500 it’s not a viable choice. So I’m now between the Rangemaster Classic 60 –a normal cooker-sized version of the range we were eyeing up – and the Stoves Richmond mini range, which does come in a variety of pretty colours…
We’ve decided against having a fitted kitchen, since we’re planning to put a much larger open-plan kitchen in the extension when it happens, and it seems a shame to fit a kitchen only to rip it out again in a couple of years. Also, with space at a premium, I think that wall units might make the room feel even smaller. So we’re looking at building the space around the cooker and a freestanding Belfast sink unit, with one or two small butcher’s block trolleys to fill in the gaps. On the walls we’re going with open shelving where we can display our prettiest kitchen bits.
Off the kitchen is a decent-sized pantry, which will be a godsend for storage. Our first thought was to knock through into the kitchen to give ourselves another couple of feet to play with, but it’s a quirky original feature so we decided it would be nice to revive it and turn it into a stylish and practical space. The plan is to paint it bright white and fill in with fitted shelves – I love the scaffold board shelving done by one of my favourite interiors bloggers Rebecca at Roses and Rolltops in her stunning home so we’re shamelessly nabbing the idea! Then we can have lots of big jars for dry goods and space for all our pots and pans.
At the moment the kitchen is a wreck, so I’m looking forward to starting work on it in the new year.

Gorgeous scaffold board kitchen shelving by Rebecca at Roses and Rolltops.
Gorgeous scaffold board kitchen shelving by Rebecca at Roses and Rolltops.