We catch up with Thomas James Bespoke co-founder, James to discuss trends for the year ahead, details of his dream kitchen and the one appliance he couldn't live without.
Q) Tell us about yourself
A) I'm James, I am from Sale in south Manchester. I started working in construction as soon as I left school in 2005 and never looked back. I'd like to think I don't take life too seriously, (others may disagree) I love spending time with family and friends with sunshine and good food, preferably Italian.
Q) Why did you start Thomas James Bespoke?
A) Working in the construction industry, I've always been fascinated by the interior details and how it can create such individuality. Giving each project its own character and substance.
Q) How long have you known Thomas and why did you choose to start the business with him?
A) Like Tom mentioned we have known each other around 6 years now, but who's counting! Tom has an exceptional eye for detail and his ambition, work ethic, pride and shear determination to succeed emulated all the principles I have about business. I knew it was going to be a success.
Q) What do you do in your spare time?
A) Spare time is a rarity these days but when I can, I like to spend time with my wife and getting away on holidays abroad. If that's not possible you can find me on the golf course showing Tom how to play.
Q) What has been your favourite project you've worked on so far and why?
A) It's hard to say as each project is different and has its own challenges which we both thrive on. Especially solving problems from the design aspect and the construction. However if I had to say, it would be the retail project we completed last year. The opticians project was so unique, with some beautiful bespoke pieces.
Q) What kitchen trends have you noticed for this year so far?
A) I've noticed a rise in very traditional cabinetry but mixed with slightly more contemporary finishes. Like the handles by our supplier Armac Martin, these can add a different perspective depending which kitchen style you choose. Blending two styles can be risky but done right it will be something to behold.
Q) If you could design your dream kitchen, what would it look like?
A) My dream kitchen? I'm really finding this difficult as I believe anything is possible from your imagination. However a few key features would be, a large pantry/larder unit with full internal workings, so it's practical and amazing for storage and versatility. I've got to have an island as they are so sociable and great for interacting whilst cooking or entertaining. Not to mention having a few little gadgets to help with more fast paced life wouldn't hurt.
Q) What is the most used appliance in your kitchen.
A) I'd probably say the ovens. I have two Neff hide and slide ovens, don't get me wrong I am no Gordan (more like Gino,) but the functions and door mechanism really do make life simple. When the door retracts it creates such a practical working space. And if you have a small space these work really well especially if you are considering having an island. Not to mention they look pretty good to!
Q) If you weren't creating kitchens, what else would you do for a job?
A) Is a professional footballer to ambitious? Realistically I don't think I would be doing something much different, I've always been a practical person making and building things, running projects. There is still the same excitement every time each project is finished as the first one.