The wonderful improvements in digital printing have enabled an enormous amount of ‘impossible’ tile designs. Not only have they provided numerous mixed materials, perfect patterns, and indistinguishable dupes, they have ensured those that have limited time for maintenance or a limited budget for design have access to more and more options.
Looking at interiors designed with a seemingly unlimited amount of money can prove daunting, but it’s not always impossible to ‘Get the Look’. Take this kitchen designed by Oakman Architecture for a flat in Downton Avenue, London. It is spacious and open with decorative, functional features and has a modern take on a classically elegant material.
Imitating the coloured cabinets is simple enough, the colour is not too dark so as to make a small kitchen look even smaller, and will be further softened when combined with plenty of light shades. The countertops, cupboards and fixtures are all relatively simple in and of themselves, but there is one standout feature that really transforms the space.
The use of the multi-level, hexagonal backsplash adds a unique element that can be incorporated into almost any kitchen. Despite the tiles’ neutral and white appearance from afar, up close their faint grey veining is immediately recognisable. Although marble is often the material of choice for a countertop, allowing it to flow up the walls, stopping abruptly at the pointed tips of the hexagons gives an illusion of height, and a characterful hint towards this elegant kitchen classic.
Our Marmi Hex does just this, combining Italian porcelain with a matt marble-look finish. They can be used on almost any wall or floor and their hexagonal shape offers a variety of design options. The grey veining is subtle, luxurious, and undeniably realistic.
The glass display cabinets with their thin timber framing are a real feature of this kitchen; cleverly balanced either side of the extractor hood. Many wall cabinets, especially if the same design as the floor-standing units, can look just too predictable and, with a dark finish like this, too intrusive. Sourcing vintage cabinets from a salvage yard is one way to go, but you can also find inspiration in your local retail park.
Ikea, for instance, has two options. The glass-fronted Markerad – 800 by 800 by 400mm deep – is one option particularly if you like the deep, square, form used in Oakman’s kitchen. A great alternative is Samman. This 600 by 780mm unit, 21mm deep, has a similar open feel. Such storage choices can really elevate a kitchen, part of a growing trend to combine classic kitchen cabinets with truly individual furniture, lighting, and accessory choices, such as a Marmi Hex splashback.