After photo of dining area

Everton Hills | Home Renovation

Q&A with the Franklin Family and Align Kitchen’s Designer, Alana

The Franklins sat down with us to have a chat about their experience with Align Kitchens and their interior home renovations. This lovely family were more than impressed with their home’s makeover and can now enjoy all the benefits of their new home design. 

We then sat down with Alana, the designer from Align Kitchens that worked on the Everton Hills renovation. Alana gave us some insights into how the Align Kitchens team redesigned and renovated the Franklin family home.

Before After


What the Franklin Family had to say

1. The Preparation Stage 

How did you know it was time to start the home renovation?

It was something we were thinking about for a while due to the layout of the house and things starting to break in the kitchen. We thought about moving versus renovating for a long time. A chance meeting with Alana and the decision not to move started the ball rolling. 

We thought about doing it in stages but a friend wanted us to house sit for them so everything fell into place to move out and do it all at the same time.

In hindsight this was one of the best decisions we made and one that Alana had recommended from the beginning!

How did you come across Align Kitchens?

I heard a friend of Alana’s talking about their new place at Red HIll while at my son’s cricket game. Through word of mouth!

What information did you need to provide Align Kitchens? 

What our primary goals were for the house.

What were your must haves for you:

  • Kitchen: Open and bright. Better functionality and natural palette.
  • Bathroom: Better design (toilets in a better location!).
  • Wardrobe: Simple clean lines with better functionality.
  • Study: Better use of space and functionality.
After photo of lounge area

2. The Challenges 

What was the biggest challenge for your renovation project? E.g. building/removing walls

We had no idea about renovations. We completely trusted Alana to guide us through the project. Alana may have a better idea about the true challenges of the renovation. It turned out to be a whole house renovation which involved a lot of different trades. 

From our point of view, everything ran very smoothly and on time. Our biggest challenge due to our lack of knowledge was choosing the design elements. Again, we were guided by Alana, which made this process a lot easier!

3. The Design Phase 

How did you decide on the colour and style of the custom made cabinets?

We found the best way to decide on style and colour was seeing the real life examples at their showroom in Red Hill. This was also supplemented by looking at magazines.

What type of benchtop did you choose? What was important to you?

This was important, as it is a major feature of the kitchen and living area. Again, we were guided by Alana to help with this decision. In the end, the tiles that Alana chose turned out better than we had expected due to the LED light reflecting off the textured surface.

After photo of kitchen benchtop

4. Post-Renovation Outlook

How has this renovation improved your lifestyle and the way you have visitors and family stay?

We have created a guest suite (extra bathroom and wardrobe with custom cabinetry). This has given guests their own space, which is a massive improvement.

After photo of bathroom cabinets
After photo of bathroom renovation

The kitchen, dining and lounge spaces have better integrated, open plans. This is much better for entertaining (something we now look forward to doing) and everyday family life.

After photo of kitchen renovation

If you could give advice to someone thinking about renovating, what would be your top 3 tips from this experience?

  1. Choose someone you trust to help make your decisions.
  2. Have a clear idea as to what you want to achieve and stick to the plan.
  3. Allow yourself to be guided by the experts. 

Designer Alana’s Take on the Project

1.  About the Project 

Tell us a bit about the design?

This spacious modern kitchen was designed for a busy family whose aim was to have a home where they can enjoy their time together, open up communication and have the space required for a busy family to cook, eat and prepare food harmoniously. The dining room table was an important addition to this home. We removed and relocated walls and doorways in order to open the room up and create a large open kitchen and dining room conducive to family life.

Before After

What was your favourite aspect of the renovation project?

The best part about this project was having clients who were open to really changing their home in order to gain functionality and create an open plan living area to enhance the natural light and size of the home. 

2. How the Design Works

Why does the design work so well?

Design wise, we relocated the entrance to the main bedroom in order to tuck it out of sight to gain a large open space for the kitchen and dining room. We converted a “hallway to nowhere” into a third ensuite bathroom for their guest room and a small open area off their garage into a walk-in robe for this room. The other two bathrooms were re-designed to create luxurious and functional rooms to be enjoyed.

Before After

How do you feel the design integrates into the wider environment?

The previous kitchen was in the middle of the home with 45 degree angles, a large high-top was surrounded by walls. It was a very dark and pokey kitchen for such a large home. The right hand side of the home is predominantly glass and by removing all the walls and creating an open plan, it now allows natural light to penetrate into the entire home, creating a light and airy space.

In entering through the front door, you are met with a beautiful large living room that includes a large kitchen, lounge and dining room, all seamlessly tied together through a soft colour palette and an engineered timber flooring.

Before After

3. The Specialist and Artisan Skills

What specialist or artisan skills were involved in the making of the project?

We worked with a variety of trades to complete this renovation. The team we have built over many years defines us as  a well-oiled machine that works well together and compliments each other’s skill sets in order to complete large renovation projects like these, within an efficient time frame, while always following the best practice to produce a quality product.

The key takeaway from the Franklin’s family story is that you don’t need to feel disheartened or give up on your home if its current design is no longer meeting your needs. A well-designed, specialised renovation may be exactly what you’re looking for!

At Align Kitchen we pride ourselves on creating meaningful relationships and understanding our clients desires so we can help create the dream home they’re after. So, if you’re looking to renovate, remodel and redesign your home, contact us to speak with one of our friendly interior home renovating experts. 

And remember, your forever home doesn’t have to have a forever design. A renovation can rejuvenate your home into the space you’ve already dreamt of!