Friday, March 11, 2011

Applying Ourselves

Ready for more kitchen talk? I bet you are! While the new kitchen is being installed, I thought I'd entertain myself (and you as well hopefully) talking about our appliances! PK and I knew we wanted a dishwasher and a rangehood, but during the design process, we realised that we would need a few other items. We also thought that we didn't want to just dump our old kitchen, so we put the whole thing on Gumtree to see if anyone was interested- and they were! So the old kitchen (now removed!), is finding a new home in someone else's home! That means a whole new fit-out...
Our kitchen sink was a large double with a wide draining area. While this sort of sink is fantastic for large families and/or large kitchens, it had always been a little excessive for our needs. With the new dishwasher going in, we were sure it would be even less needed! So PK and I started looking at undermount sinks and found that we both favoured the more rectangular/squarish style. After much umming and ahhing, we decided that we wanted a deep, single bowl undermount sink- what a mouthful! The lady at the display centre tried to talk us out of a single, saying that we would regret not being able to separate things into different sinks, but I guess we'll find out! We think it will work really well for washing pots and pans and all of the other large items that don't fit in a dishwasher and when it's not in use, we can fill it with ice and use it as a sort of ice bucket! Here is the one we've chosen:
Olivieri Sonetto 1050U
It may not look like much from the picture, but at 535mm long,  405mm wide and 230mm deep, this baby will hold many a cold beverage (as well as fit my cookie trays, pots and pans)! I can't wait to post pretty, shiny installed pics!
Asko 5131SS
While we're talking washing tools, I should definitely cover our choice of dishwasher! We asked many people for their experiences as this was our first dishwasher purchase and we didn't really know what was good -apart from not having to wash by hand anymore! We also used Choice's reviews (and PK's cousin who happens to work for a large appliance store) to help us decide finally on an Asko stainless steel built-in model. We were so excited about this purchase that PK's pride and joy has actually been in use without being properly installed for more than a couple of months now! We simply attached the water inlet to the reticulation point outside the kitchen and set up a drain system with a large bucket. It runs like a dream! :) We can't wait until our dishwasher is properly installed in the new kitchen though- it will definitely be more functional putting dishes in directly to the machine rather than stacking them just before a wash!
We'll be sticking with our current fridge, just maybe a little cleaner! While a shiny new stainless steel model might be in the long term plans, it's just not in the budget at the moment and there is absolutely nothing wrong with the current model. It is the perfect size for the two of us- plus if you were looking really hard at the preliminary design in this post, you may have noticed that at the front left of the breakfast bar, we are installing a bar fridge! Yep, PK got his way with using the dead space created by the dishwasher- once I had suggested it, he wasn't going to give that up! Here is the one he chose (I encouraged him to select his perfect one so I knew he would be happy with it):
The Beer Fridge
As a beer drinker, PK is super excited that each shelf holds up to 42 stubbies! Plus, it has ventilation at the front, which is perfect for where it is being installed. The locking feature means that we can keep little hands off things they aren't allowed if need be AND the door can be switched to open from the left or the right, depending on what works best once it is installed. PK thought of everything! Of course, if we are going to have a bar fridge for entertaining, we will need some food for our future guests. And what better for creating edibles than a new oven and cooktop?
De Longhi Multi Function Electric Oven
As we are dropping the position of our new oven from a wall oven to being under-bench height, I wanted to try and make sure that it wasn't going to be hot to touch. PK has two nieces and a nephew and I wouldn't want them burning themselves through curiosity! This model has a cooling feature which keeps the door cool to the touch. The controls being knobs instead of buttons means that I don't have to be a genius to use it (bonus!) and the anti-fingerprint stainless steel finish means I (hopefully) won't develop OCD trying to get rid of marks!
De Longhi Gas Cooktop
You'll remember my whining about near burns from trying to reach the control knobs on the old cooktop? I made sure that the new device was easy to control (from the front!) and we chose stainless steel for ease of cleaning. With the trivets, there was a choice of the cast iron that we decided on or enamelled steel. I liked the cast iron better- because although they are very heavy, they won't bend as easily and therefore will be more stable and level for longer. Also, I think they look better! :) A really good feature of the cooktop we chose (and that is available with a lot of new models) is the flame- failure safety cut off. That means that if the flame goes out (because, say a puff of wind comes through an adjacent window), the gas cuts out, so you don't have gas filling up your room without knowing about it! Smart huh?
Schweigen (silent) rangehood
And then finally, there is my long awaited rangehood! We love the proportions of this model, with its sleek lines without any sharp corners that PK might have cut his head open on- being a tall lad, he was a little worried about height issues! The filter inserts can be taken out and put through the dishwasher if they need to be cleaned (easy!) and the 'silent' part is because it is vented externally, with the motor at the top of the flue instead of inside. We didn't want to spend so much money on making the 'great room' great for entertaining, only to have conversation drowned out by the drone of an exhaust fan!

I'm so excited about all of the brand new shiny things- it's like Christmas around here at Muriel at the moment! There is still a long way to go, but with the old out and the new about to go in, the anticipation is building! Have you had any appliance (big or small) purchases brighten your house recently? What goes in to making your decisions?

P.S. FromMuriel received no payment for mentioning these products. It just (hopefully!) works for us! 

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