Saturday, 22 April 2017

Bittersweet

Ey up my faithful blogworms, with so many positive things happening here at Milestone HQ, to some, my blog this week may seem negative. 

So really this weeks offering is probably a little bittersweet ! We have experienced stuff in the beginning quarter of this year which has made us look deeper at how we do what we do and the document content below reflects things that we see happening around us.

Costs are rising in all areas of our lives and to continue to run our business successfully and keep being able to provide the first class Eco and Traditional kitchens that we create, we need to be more efficient with our time. This we feel will enable us to focus more on productive time management.


Guidelines relating to planning & appointments for Milestone kitchen projects

It is with regret that we find that we have to implement the following guidelines regarding how we charge out our time. Genuine enquiries, we’re sure, will understand and appreciate our position.

Due to the unique way we can create kitchens here at Milestone HQ, a proportion of our enquiries are simply using our skills & experience to achieve planning & design which is then taken elsewhere.

If we achieve the results you want and you place your order with us then some or all of these costs are refunded, as you will see.

 Thank you for your understanding.

Planning and design guidelines

 As company policy, we do not release plans and layouts to customers prior to a deposit being paid to book the work in. This applies to internet enquiries as well as local enquiries.

However, we will release plans prior to a deposit being paid on payment of a fee of £120.00 inc.vat which will be wholly refundable when you place your order with us for your kitchen.

Appointment guidelines: Distance

Zone 1: Our local appointments for site surveys within our normal operating range are free of charge.
(defined as 40 minutes travelling time from our base in Ilkley, measured by AA Routefinder calculations)

Zone 2: 40 minutes to an hour, the appointment cost will be £75 inc.vat. This is refundable on placing your order with us.


Zone 3: Over an hour travelling time, the appointment cost is based on our national rates dependant on postcode. Where this is used, we will keep the fuel cost to get to site and back but refund the balance on placing of your order with us.

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As those of you who know us well will appreciate, we don't do things for no reason and our planning, design and costing is open and honest. This is why I'm posting this first to you our faithful followers. 

Jules









Saturday, 8 April 2017

Comprehensively green !

Ey up my faithful blogworms, I did say that last week's story was the first of two parts ..... well, here's the second !

We had the pleasure of creating another totally Eco kitchen last week for a lovely lady local to us and here it is, encompassing a whole range of materials: eco & sustainable, reclaimed, reused & recycled. 

The kitchen furniture, throughout, is from our Eco2 stable, manufactured in U100 Mussel 60/40 FSC / Recycled mix board material.

Once more I'll let the pictures tell the story 


You can tell this that the "newness" was just beginning to wear off the existing units .... time for a change !!

The new sink area brings in several elements:

Recycled
- a 12mm Yoghurt pot worktop with 18mm edge sections to give the appearance of a 30mm worktop overall. Making the upstands from the same yog pot board.
The underside is backed up on 18mm Medite Ecologique to add substance and strength to the worktop
Re-used - the existing fridge was used in the new layout
Recycled - the sink is a Blanco high recycled content stainless steel

The hob and cooker section of the kitchen features:

Sustainable
- French Oak worktops, also in 30mm with ...
Reclaimed - Oak floorboards machined into upstands at the same height as the yog pot ones around the sink.
Eco - the under unit lights are the new 3 watt ... yes, just 3 watt Cobb GX53 lamps, great light output with extremely low energy useage !

Oven, Hob and Hood

Eco
 - these are all from the Gorenje range of appliances, probably the most environmentally conscious appliance maker in the market at this time, they've got way too many awards to list here so check out their website for the whole story.

This area of the kitchen looked "untidy" shall we say, so the best thing to do was create a housing for the boiler to go into with space at the side for a small larder unit.
With the whole thing finished, the boiler area now looks neat and tidy. The correct venting was cut into the cabinets for safe boiler use and still with good access for servicing.
No-one would realise the boiler was there and we've incorporated extra storage capacity into the kitchen ..... Bonus !


This kitchen, once again, was a joy to create. It's use of Eco materials is about as comprehensive as it gets and it's created a kitchen that's just simply a nice place to be as well as making best use of the space and an efficient place to work. The whole project was carried out to an affordable budget ...... who says recycled products have to be expensive !!

I feel a huge "big up" for the lady of the house is in order, who dilligently seperated all the waste from the project into different piles to take down to the local waste site to be, itself, it turn, recycled !!

I love a happy ending. 😊

Jules.







Saturday, 1 April 2017

Thoroughly Modern Eco

Ey up my faithful blogworms, really nice to get a totally Eco local kitchen for a change and this is the first of two on the trot. 

A lovely couple with an Eco conscience, shall we say not in the first flush of youth, showing that it's not just the younger generation who are Eco aware. More power to them, I say !

A Cashmere Grey kitchen with matching doors from our Eco2 range, with Eco E1 grade board laminate worktops, high recycled content stainless steel sink and finished with Johnsons 35% recycled content tiles. At base level, making a very affordable totally Eco kitchen.

I'll let the pictures speak !

Oh how I love badly 'out of square' rooms, still that's why scribing was invented

Wall units going up with the trendy 'masking tape' handles

Proving that my mate actually does earn his keep !! He'll not thank me for this picture !

Can't help it, I'm "tidy plumbing" obsessed, control over water is essential in my book.

This is where it got really weird, an out of square room where we had to scribe the cabinets to make sure all the lines and edges were true. Once we got to cutting the worktop joints, NOT ONE BUT BOTH of them came out perfectly square, still scratching my head over how the hell that happened ! But, I'll take it as it makes cutting the joints a lot easier. 

Re-use and recycle was another of the principles used here as we refitted all the existing appliances into the new kitchen. Saving money and saving waste.

Very smooth modern look, their colour choices, provided by the recycled content tiles.

The sink was the only new 'appliance' we fitted.


What is there left to add, thoroughly modern, totally Eco, budget kitchen.


Tune in next week for the next gripping installment of local Eco.

Same place, same time, different location, different style, different client but still totally Eco

Jules !




 

Saturday, 18 March 2017

Taking Liberties !!

Ey up my faithful blogworms, another new product this week. 

Over the years, a lot of you will already know that we've been offering painted doors in any colour you like, any size you need.

 It's been our proud boast for a long time that there isn't a kitchen in the UK that we can't fit replacement doors to and that still stands !! However, you've also asked if we can supply kitchen unit doors that you can paint yourself or have a specialist kitchen painter create effects for you.

Well, we have done this before but now we've found a new range of doors that expand that concept.

Below is a picture of the Hoxton Finsbury door painted in one of the standard colours from the range. 




Here at Milestone HQ, we have been given exclusive availability on this door in a new way for you, our treasured customers.

1. Importantly, it can still be made any size we need it to be, enabling us to us it for absolutely any kitchen out there.

2. It's an unusual and very stylish woodgrained MDF Shaker door, so when painted, it looks like a timber door but without paying timber door prices, therefore keeping costs down.

3. As you can see from the picture, we can cater for the increasingly popular curved doors, something we haven't been able to do up to now in this way !

4. It's a 21mm thick door, so a good solid door, none of the thin flimsy articles that seem to have been popping up in the market lately.

5. And this is the "Ace in the hole" it's available ..... Primed in white for you to apply your own paint effect or finish straight on to the door.

The big advantage to being able to paint your own doors it that at any time in the future when your kitchen starts to look a little tired, you can simply re-paint it yourself, giving it a low cost, whole new lease of life.

You've all heard, I'm sure, people say " It's only ............, how hard can it be ??" Usually before they dive into a project and ruin it through either lack of knowledge or lack of skill .... or both !!

This is very different, however, because quite literally all you need is a tin of paint, a small foam roller & tray and a bit of patience and the results can be extremely satisfying !!

We'll call it ....The Liberty Door....... giving you freedom to choose your own style !!

Jules.












Saturday, 4 March 2017

Roll up, Roll up, It's display change time !

Ey up my faithful blogworms, significant changes to our Eco stable this week. With a major reshuffle of our main board supplier, we are able to increase our range of colours for both the EcoSelect and Eco2 range of kitchens.

Important News: Reading the trend reports from the major kitchen shows around the world a few of things stand out.

1) The current trend for flat grey colours seems to be dying out now, it's been around for a couple of years and appears to have run it's course. It did this back in the 90's and the same sort of timescale occured then.

2) The up coming colours seem to be blues, green/blues and certain grey/greens in the single ( or uni ) colours.

3) The trend on woodgrains appears to be leading us down the "driftwood" sort of route with very linear creams, brown/greys and silvery greys often associated with the driftwood you see lying around on the beach

If I had to give the new on-trend colours a theme, I would say we're going 'coastal', which is strange as this was reflected in the kitchen we've just finished as featured in last weeks blog !! Not contrived, I can assure as the reports only came out this week for us.

Anyway, back to the point, I get there eventually, with the re-shuffle of colours we can now offer 36 colours into our two Eco ranges I mentioned above. This is way more than we had before on EcoSelect by about threefold and certainly 50% more than we had in Eco2



So it's display change time !!


In light of all these changes, our existing Eco2 display in now up for sale.

Stuffed with features and able to be added to if you require, we are clearing this display to make room for a new one in new colours.

We will include the hob, the hood and the sink, the lighting, in fact, everything except the fridge !!



 Makes a change, it's usually everything except the kitchen sink !!!!





So if you're after a bargain, truck on down to Milestone HQ and see if what we've got fits your space.

Regards. Jules

Saturday, 18 February 2017

Milestone goes Coastal

Ey up my faithful blogworms, this week we've all been to the seaside .... or rather ...it feels like it !

We don't often come across kitchen projects with a clear vision of setting a scene within the room, most people are still tuned into using earth colours and naturals, however, the coastal influence in our latest completed project is quite clear from the use of colour.

The coastal reference is quite ironic in a way as here we sit more or less equidistant between the West and East coasts in our wonderful land.

 I think you could be forgiven for expecting to see the sea outside the kitchen window !!

When we are talking to people about colour etc, we usually say look at a couple of colours next to each other or groups of colours within the same area of a colour chart as these give good groupings for a palette that usually works in most rooms.



However, the colours used here are not only from two different charts but two different manufacturers !!

The "wow" factor when you walk is the room is quite staggering when you see the colours in the flesh. 



This couples use of colour is, in my opinion, absolutely spot on for their individual style. What really nails it for me is that a lot of people steer clear of blues as being a 'cold colour' but I think this proves that when chosen carefully, blue can be a very comforting, easy to live with colour.

As we look a trends within our industry, if you take any real notice of such things !, it would appear that this sort of scheme is set to become where furniture is going in the very near future. So it appears that this couple are ahead of the game whether they knew it or not.

We loved this so much, we're working on creating a version of this scheme in our Eco2 range to slot into our Eco stable of kitchens and, of course, as a lot of you know we can supply kitchens all over the country. You never know, we might even get a coastal style kitchen in a home on the coast .... a sort of "ECOast .... groan ! I can't believe I just said that !

Stay tuned Eco fans for future developments.

Jules 

Saturday, 11 February 2017

For the sake of your health, read this !

Ey up my faithful blogworms, Plumbing ............................... I am still dismayed with the frequency that I still find of plugs, pipes and water connections BEHIND washing machines, dishwasher etc !! When are people going to wise up and realise that this is contrary to all existing regulations, not to mention downright dangerous, oops, said I wasn't going to mention that !


 It might seems frivolous to have each water connection seperate but the time saved later in being able to very easily switch any appliance off independantly of the others make good sense.

Those of you who know me, know that I firmly believe in independant control of each piece. 

Also, the controls need to be in a cabinet next door to the appliance where you can switch everything off should the need arise without touching the appliance in case of electric shocks or water leaks.

Some plumbing can look complex but once explained and you know what does what, then you have proper control in case of an emergency. 

The days of having the switch the whole fuse box off for an electrical fault and shut down the house stop cock for the water if you get a leak are gone if a common sense approach is taken to how each piece is set out.

Only this week I pulled out a dishwasher and a built in washing machine only to find that all the power and water connections were behind them.

For Gods sake, how dangerous is this?. What do you do in an emergency ........... ! You can't get at anything to shut the machines down if the connections are behind them. 

Neat, tidy, well organised plumbing and electrics in a kitchen to me, are essential for good practice and a safe environment. Why don't others view this as necessary ??

If you fall into this category then it's time someone, me if you like, took a long hard look at how to rework things to make them safe !! Don't leave it until it's too late, in a panic and it all starts to go horribly wrong. It only costs a few quid to add isolator valves and move plugs to somewhere safe and that buys you a massive chunk of piece of mind knowing you're safe.

Here's some homework for you now: Go round your kitchen, look at each appliance and think to yourself " if something goes wrong, how do I switch that off ??" including your mains water stopcock and your electrical fuse board. 

If you don't know, find out, if you can't find out, get someone in to find out for you. At the end of the day, your health and well being might depend on it !!

Rant over, Check things out and stay well. Jules.








Saturday, 21 January 2017

A quart into a pint pot, not !

Ey up my faithful blogworms, here at Milestone HQ I think we're absolutely "on fire" !!

We've brought you the Milestone "Handleless Shaker" door ...... A world first !

We've brought you the "Visualiser" ...... to see colours in real life and real time !

And now .... pause for drum roll ........ Probably the most significant step forward in kitchen planning for years ..... the "Milestone kitchen unit Volume calculator" 

The what ??? .... I hear you say, well check this out and I will explain !



Question: How do you know if your kitchen is adequate in size for the needs of your household ?

Upto now we've had no reference point by which this can be judged and we're hoping this humble document will go a long way towards solving that. It's very simple in it's approach, most good ideas are ! 

Every kitchen survey we book now, this sheet will be taken along and used to record the existing units. Using the chart we can work out how much useable storage volume there is in it. When we plan a new kitchen for you, we'll repeat the calculation to see if an increase in storage has been achieved within the kitchen space.

This could, should and we hope, will be adopted throughout the land to give the very first benchmark by which any kitchen can be judged in terms of the actual storage capacity within it.

Every kitchen, to be effective, should have enough storage in it to adequately support the size of the family living in the house.

2 important figures will be: Storage in cubic metres against number of bedrooms (and hence occupancy)

As we gather data, we can look at the figures and recommend the storage volume you should have for your kitchen to be effective. Get this right and the impact could be enormous on saleability of your home. It could also impact on housebuilders by consulting the data to give them the right size kitchen for any house they build. 

OK, we're a long way off that yet but you've got to start somewhere !!

This is where you, my faithful blogworms, can help us gather data for a huge survey of what's out there. Email me for a calculator sheet (with instructions) copy it and get all your friends and family to fill it in and send it back. Anyone can have one ... they're free .... and even if you're not able to come to us for your kitchen ..... take it to whoever you are using and say "Right, this is the storage volume I have, now improve it ! "

This could spell the end of tiny inefficient kitchens and give us all improved working space at home !! 

It's not about squeezing a quart into a pint pot, it's about efficient design !!

Get on board and let's do this ! 

email: julian@milestone.uk.net for your copy today or contact us through our Facebook page

Exhausted.... Jules !













Saturday, 14 January 2017

Realtime Vision



Ey up my faithful blogworms, we are very pleased to announce that we now have a great new software tool at our disposal to help with choosing colours for your kitchen project. We've been playing with it and it does become obsessive, bit like a computer game but a hell of a lot more useful.

Worktops Visualiser

With our online visualiser tool you can use the room sets to begin the journey to your dream kitchen.

You can check how certain combinations of worktops, splashbacks and upstands work with doors, shelving and drawer fronts. It allows you to quickly and easily create the type of look you are after. 

https://youtu.be/q_ZqR5i37rA

You can either use the You Tube link above to follow the video tutorial on how to explore colours ( if I've managed to make it work ! I'm sure you'll tell me if it doesn't ) for your new Eco kitchen project. 

This software puts the colours you want to see into a kitchen setting to help you choose colour combinations. This works for our EcoSelect and Eco2 kitchens from our Eco stable and general use of our E1 MFC boards. OR you can come in to see us and we'll show how it works on our computers, we'd love to see you AND we'll put the kettle on !

Extra note: With our Vinyl wrap doors all having board equivalent colours, we can use it for those as well ! ...... Fab !












We can use the material samples we've got here to help you think about colour and then put them into the Visualiser to let you see how they would look in a completed kitchen.

It a great step forward in being able to build your colours into a virtual kitchen to see if they work how you would hope them to.

Unlike our normal kitchen design program and most other programs of the type, that use generic colours, this uses actual realtime images of exactly the material you chosen to look at. It takes all the guesswork out of it. ...... Bonus !!

Come and immerse yourself in true colour kitchens .... Another "Milestone" in helping you choose.





Just type in Milestone Design or MilestoneEcoKitchens to take you there 




Jules









Saturday, 7 January 2017

Re-inventing the wheel

Ey up my faithful blogworms, Happy new year to you all, we're back after Xmas and firing on all 4 cylinders with massive news from Milestone HQ !!

STOP PRESS !

COMING SOON !! The revolutionary " Handless Shaker Door " invented by us and the only one "in the world" ( said in a Jeremy Clarkson kind of way !) will soon be alive and well and living on display in our showroom. We've carried out a few installations with it so far and it's gathering speed. The HOTTEST NEW DESIGN the kitchen industry has seen for years, decades even, and it's available to everyone EXCLUSIVELY FROM MILESTONE ( he said feeling rather smug ! ). Once we get the display fitted it will shortly be going up on our website, available in many Eco configurations and many mainstream versions. There's something for everybody, whatever your persuasion. Check it out !

The above paragraph appeared recently on our Facebook page and I'm extremely pleased to announce the display is going in as we speak !!

 It's not quite finished yet but I just couldn't wait to show it to you all. 

This really is the most significant new door design to appear in years and it's all ours ! 

It can also be all yours simply by coming and talking to us and see what you think and grabbing a piece of kitchen design history in the making !




 We conceived the door to fit into our growing Eco stable but soon realised that we can offer it in all the conventional materials aswell.

The initial concept was due to be offered in 3 ways:

1. Sustainable American Tulipwood in a natural finish

2. As above but painted with an Organic paint

3. Medite Ecologique ( environmentally friendly MDF .. Google it for more info ) painted with Organic paint.

However, whilst we aim nowadays for development in Eco products, we feel this unique new design should be available in more traditional materials also.

So, we will be able to make it in Sustainable Oak, Maple, Ash, Walnut and normal furniture grade MDF and painted in whatever colour you wish from whichever range of paints you choose.

The potential for this door is absolutely massive !

Our display is made in Tulipwood and painted in a Farrow & Ball colour: Elephants Breath ( I really don't know where the hell they get these names from ! ) 

I really can't stress how revolutionary this new door design is. I've come up with new door designs over the years, some work, some don't but this one is a bit like re-inventing the wheel in it's significance.

As I said earlier, come in and witness history in the making, It's British made, nay, Yorkshire made and makes me proud to be a Yorkshireman. !! Our county has such a lot to offer, we should begin to re-focus and look north rather than south for inventive, creative thinking !!

Wow ! 

Jules