Of course we would love you to come to Stelline Interiors and buy your new kitchen, bedroom or home office Furniture. However, we understand that you will shop around and we hope this guide helps you to avoid buying an inferior product.
We are fitted furniture specialists – we sell nothing but luxury kitchens in Kent as well as bedrooms and home office furniture. We wouldn’t expect you to come to us for a yard of sand, three metres of plastic guttering and a roll of roof felt, and conversely if you want excellent advice and a top quality product you are probably not going to find this in a builders merchant or DIY store.
If in doubt, try asking one of these stores about their product:
- What type of board are the carcases made of?
- Who manufactures the hardware that is fitted?
- Where are the carcases manufactured?
We doubt very much if they would be able to tell you – enough said. Our kitchens are manufactured locally in Kent and we know exactly what goes in to them. If you buy a kitchen from a DIY store then who knows which country they sourced it from this month!
What to look out for:
When you enter a kitchen showroom the first two things you are going to notice are the doors and worktops. This is all well and good but one of the most important things to consider when purchasing a kitchen is the quality of the carcase.
After all, the carcase is the foundation of the kitchen. If you have a poor quality flimsy carcase, you’re very unlikely to ever get your kitchen to look right and you are going to be prone to problems in years to come.
I am sure you have seen kitchens with doors that will not line up or shelves sagging under the weight of tinned food. Is thicker better? In simple terms, not always. What really counts is the quality of the board that the carcase is made of.
You should be looking for a good quality board such as Egger or Kronospan. In fact, a 15mm carcase made from good quality board will serve you better than an 18mm carcase made from a poor quality board, but obviously 18mm is better than 15mm if you are comparing like for like.
At Stelline Interiors, we use a good quality 18mm board edged with a robust protective edging not the iron on tape you will find on cheap carcases.
These vary in quality drastically and it can be difficult to the untrained eye to tell a good-quality from a poor-quality door. If you pick up a sample door and it feels extremely light, it’s probably going to be a chipboard core and we would advise that you avoid these. Stelline Interior’s foil-wrapped doors are made with a good-quality, solid MDF core. If it is a foil-wrapped door, have a good look at it and make sure there isn’t excessive ‘orange-peel’ effect on the surface.
We also supply acrylic doors. These are generally more expensive than foil-wrapped, but give a flatter, less orange-peel effect on the door face because of the way they are manufactured. Instead of being wrapped in a vinyl foil, they have a sheet of acrylic bonded to the surface.
Again, solid wood doors can vary in quality, so make sure you buy from a trusted source. If you buy a solid frame door and the centre panel does not have a genuine veneer, you will find that after a few months, your door will be two different colours as the wood darkens and the panel does not.
You can always tell if it is a solid wood door by looking at the top edge to find the joint where rails and stiles are fixed together. If you’re not sure if it is a foil or solid wood door, this is a good test as a foil door will not have a joint showing.
If you choose laminate worktops, look for a good make such as Prima or Omega. Always check that the laminate runs all the way under the bull nose and is joined with a wax seal to stop moisture ingress.
Solid surfaces such as granite and solid woods can vary in price and quality, so if in doubt, ask one of our knowledgeable staff to show you the comparisons of the various products on the market.
Again, it is pointless to buy a good quality kitchen if it is supplied with cheap hardware. Look for good quality hardware made by such companies as Blum or Hafele. Cheap hinges and drawer runners will cause all sorts of problems in the months to come.
We hope this helps, but we are always on the end of the phone if you would like some free advice. Alternatively, contact us or pop in to see us at our brand new premises to talk to one of our expert staff. We look forward to welcoming you.