I keep telling myself that our bathroom was the most difficult space to decorate, but I think the kitchen was at least at the same difficulty level or even higher. Maybe the bathroom felt more difficult to me, because it was the first room we started with and I wasn’t experienced with Turkish workers at that time.
We are lucky with the sizes of our kitchen, just like everyone in the neighbourhood is. Our apartment is approximately 108 m2, which is a quite normal size. Here in the neighbourhood the sizes of apartments vary between 76 and 126 m2. The apartments look a lot like each other and the space is divided practically. No small rooms and no useless strange corners. The kitchens from the apartments are usually half open and so was ours. It’s a half separated space, but you can easily walk into the living room because of the open portals from the hall to the kitchen and to the livingroom. We decided to close the kitchen, made the wall a little bit longer and had a door made. Why did we choose to close our kitchen? You could see the kitchen from every corner in the living room, I wasn’t able to hide anything like dirty dishes or the mess when I’m cooking. And to avoid the smell of food in the living room, this was the most logical choice for us. I love open kitchens by the way, it gives a warm feeling to the living room, but closing the kitchen was the most practical solution for us.
The existing kitchen was old and dirty, so we could start from zero when designing our new kitchen. We began to draw our kitchen and this was really hard for me to do, since I never cook and have no idea where to place what. I wanted enough working space on the worktop and I wanted to place some of my small kitchen equipment, like the Nespresso machine, the blender, toast machine and the kettle, on the worktop. I figured I needed a lot of power points. We finally agreed on a design and could get started with all the fitting work, the electricity and the plumbing. The only thing I regret so far is the place of the dish washer. I should have placed it right next to the sink and I put it one place further.
I always wanted a white kitchen, because I thought it would look fresh and bright. My husband wanted a black kitchen. He wants everything black, it suits his morning temper so well 😉 We met in the middle and decided for a grey / taupe kitchen. We drove to Ikitelli sanayi bölgesi for the kitchen cabinets. This place offers everything for your house. It’s an industrial zone and you can find here house and garden furniture, kitchen and bathrooms, office furniture, electricity needs, metal, wood and so much more. We’ve chosen the color and the model of the cabinets from Maspower. All the handles are from Ikea and so is our sink.
For the worktop I initially wanted marble so much, but everyone who has ever bought marble knows how expensive this is. Marble is being sold by kg. and in big blocks. You have to choose a stone block and it’s so heavy! We can’t hardly carry our coffee table with two persons, imagine the weight of a worktop for the kitchen. We got prices around € 5.000,- and it was way way way outside our budget. I started looking for fake marble worktops (granite), but it looked so cheap. My second choice was wood and Koçtaş was selling this. We got to choose out of six colors. We asked them to come by to take the measurements, but they refused. They told me I had to take the measurements myself, but I found this too riskful. Only 1 cm could make such a big difference and this was a risk I couldn’t take. So we found another place, again around Ikitelli and they came by to take all the measurements. I’ve chosen a worktop out of 60 colors from a picture I got send via Whatsapp. Distance makes everything so much more complex. They wanted to place a plinth in the back of the worktop. I didn’t want any plinth, I wanted them to seal the edges with silicone. They agreed not using a plinth, but they didn’t seal the edges. It’s normal here in Turkey to deliver half work. I sealed all the edges myself.
The kitchen was placed by Uğurcan and his uncle Murat, who had experience with placing kitchens. They worked really hard and they were having a lot of difficulties with placing the kitchen, but every problem got solved in one or another way. They even thought of mechanic systems I wouldn’t have thought of. Every shelf is placed with a system so I can pull the shelves towards myself. This makes it easier to place my kitchenware and to grab my kitchenware. I never thought I would need this, but I can’t imagine the kitchen without this system anymore.
Our furniture maker made us a wooden table for the kitchen. He IS fantastic by the way. So far, he made everything just perfect and exactly like the way we wanted it to be. He’s a little bit expensive, but he’s totally worth his price. He made our diner table, our bedroom furniture, our library, our tv console and now our kitchen table. We got 4 black chairs from Ikea to combine with the table. I found a marble plate at Mudo, which I’m using as a decoration plate on my worktop. The accessories are mostly bought in Holland. I have a salt and pepper mill from Peugeot, oil and vinegar bottles from Emile Henry and a small salt and pepper set from Little Diva. I bought some serving spoons and forks in the colors gold, black and wood and I’m using them as decoration for my worktop. My kitchen equipments are from Kitchenaid. It’s an investment, but I’m so happy with it. The equipment not only looks nice on the worktop, it’s also from great quality.
I already bought a lot of cookware with my mother in law months before moving to Istanbul. But when I started cooking I found out I had a lot of missings things in the kitchen. Now, a few weeks later I have completed most of my needs. It’s easy to find cookware around here. Akbatı offers a lot of choice and we have a big 5M Migros where I literally can find anything I need. I’m not into difficult cooking, I’m trying to keep it simple. So far I don’t have any problems with cooking and baking. I’m trying new things every week and I’m learning from my mistakes. Any tips for easy, quick recipes are welcome 😉