A Contemporary Burnished Paint Effect Kitchen in West Sussex

Designed for Charlie Smallbone’s Ledbury Studio

The Brief

The brief was to design a cohesive colour and paint effect to compliment the many varied elements in the client’s kitchen.

These elements included pewter, copper, carved wood, and acid etched glass. With colours covering dark stained ash through silvers, golds and verdigris.


Collaborating with Ledbury Studio is very organic and artisanal, which suits my approach to colour and finish on their bespoke kitchens perfectly.

With this commission, the colour and finish was designed and sampled on site with the clients.

The light bounce with all the kitchen’s elements, including flooring, worktops, walls and lighting meant that a truly bespoke approach was called for.

This is the top end of hand painting where a colour and effects are designed exclusively for the client.

The Paint Effect

This particular paint effect was created using 3 layers of paint in 3 different colours.

2 translucent burnished coats over a cross hatched solid base. The time lapse clip shows how this process was achieved.

It leaves a wonderfully soft and soulful finish with a glint of movement from the burnishing.


Most bespoke or custom made kitchens these days are factory painted and hand touched on site. Personally I feel that this can lead to a lot of room for error as the colour has to be pre chosen, sometimes months beforehand.

Traditional hand painting is a much more soulful approach and a quite necessary one in my opinion, that lends itself beautifully to truly bespoke kitchens. The colour and sheen ( sheen is so important and is constantly overlooked ) can be altered on site to meet the client’s tastes and requirements.

I like to take this a step or two further, a kind of nod to the paint effects on kitchens I used to paint that were so on trend 30 years ago, ( lemon dragging and rag rolling! It seems unimaginable that it was so popular then, these days!)

Today, my softened paint effects bring another layer of design interest to a kitchen. I find they also bring a cohesive quality to the overall kitchen design. allowing many more unusual elements, such as Ledbury Studio’s Metallics Collection to sit happily alongside painted cupboards.

Painting in this way is a real passion for me and I absolutely love it when the clients are as excited and thrilled as I am once their kitchen is complete. Just like this one! and what a joy it was painting it X

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