It is said that ‘you’ll never regret buying quality’ and this is certainly true when it comes to kitchens.
The quality of Tomas kitchens is clearly evident on a number of levels:
Each door and panel is 22mm thick, beautifully profiled and finished in multiple coats of hard wearing, easy to clean coloured lacquer. The use of lacquer not only brings the opportunity to use the unique Abstract Five Colours, it also feels good to the touch. Unlike a laminated door, there is no ‘edging’ and the finish is continuous.
Behind closed doors, the quality continues… each and every drawer box is constructed from solid oak using English dove-tail joints. They are as strong as they are beautiful – even the base of the drawers is 9mm thick. – There’s nothing flimsy or plasticy going on - we’re talking proper drawers here!
The cabinets themselves are made from very tough high quality melamine faced Latvian Birch Ply. The ply core is exposed and sealed to create a rather cool design feature and also negates the need for any edging which tends to peel off with use over the years – one of the weak points of normal kitchens as they age. The other advantage of using plywood (instead of the usual chipboard) is that the hinges are securely mounted.
In summary, all of the usual areas that deteriorate with a typical mid-range kitchen have been neatly designed out of the Tomas product.
When it comes to the hardware, only the best components are used. The soft-close hinges are by market leaders BLUM and the drawer runners are by GRASSE. Again, these are soft close and fully adjustable.
The wireworks are also of the highest standard. High quality Italian manufactures SIGE provide sturdy and innovative solutions for corners, larders and bins.
Larders can also be specified with traditional solid oak features, such as the neat gallery shelves that fit on the back of larder doors. These are dubbed the ‘Toboggan’ shelf (for obvious reasons) and provide a beautifully functional place for jars and the like. Curved oak shelves, known as the ‘Bay’ shelves are designed to sweep away to create head space, which enables the larder to be used as additional countertop.
Tomas Kitchen Living are main dealers for Miele and Siemens. Between these high-quality kitchen brands a huge range of appliances is available.
Countertops are usually from quartz or Corian – both of which are the perfect partners for a high-quality Tomas kitchen. There are literally 100s of options for quartz and the choice can be mind boggling. To simplify the process of choosing, a shortlist of the best options has been compiled and each Tomas showroom has a selection of quartz samples. Corian, works really well in one of the whites from the range, perfect with Abstract Five colours and bringing that classic Corian look.
The top-notch quality with an upper middle price tag is achievable for the simple reason that we manufacture and only sell from our own showrooms. For a few thousand more than something very ‘middle-of-the-road’ you can have a Tomas kitchen – it’s worth every penny and as they say… you’ll never regret buying quality.
QUALITY IS GREEN
When choosing a kitchen spare a thought for the planet and consider the green credentials and sustainability of the product you are looking at. One of biggest problems we face today is this idea of the ‘chuck-away culture’. Low cost, low quality, short use products - often manufactured in emerging economies thousands of miles away that end up in landfill. As with the likes of mobile phones that are designed to break or become outdated in a few years, many products are designed ‘not’ to last and thus perpetuate a market for endless replacement. To some degree this is also relevant in the world of the kitchen cabinet, so when I set out to design our cabinets I looked at all the elements of a normal kitchen that would deteriorate over time and engineered these defects out of the specification. By building a product that stands the test of time we also built a product that has an exceptionally low carbon footprint, due to the fact that it wouldn’t need replacing. From this starting point the materials chosen were from sustainable sources and ultimately renewable and recyclable. If we breakdown the key components of a typical Tomas cabinet we can see why the material is selected, why it is long lasting and why it is sustainable and recyclable.
The Carcase (cabinet).
Typically kitchen cabinets are made from MFC (melamine faced chipboard) and have edging. This is a low cost approach, but as the kitchen ages or is heavily used the edging may come away and doors start to drop as the fixings into the chipboard become loose and worn. This will potentially lead to the kitchen requiring replacement sooner rather than later. The Tomas carcase is constructed for melamine faced birch plywood. The plywood is incredibly strong and provides excellent an fixing for hinges etc. The edge is intentionally exposed to leap-frog the whole need for the aforementioned edging – which is an inherent weak-point. This feature is super practical and looks great, adding to the character and distinctive identity of a Tomas kitchen. Furthermore the plywood is, of course, from sustainable birch forests and is FSC accredited.
We chose to specialise in proper solid oak drawer boxes, They don’t feature plastic clips and bits and bobs that fall off and they don’t have those thin bases that may sag and drop out – I see this a lot on my travels! The centuries old dovetail construction method is certainly well tried and tested is insanely strong. The oak is from sustainable sources and is also FSC accredited. Needless to say they look stunningly beautiful and with a little care will improve with age.
The Doors and Panels
High density moisture resistant board (HDF) is chosen for its stability and workability. It also from sustainable sources and can be potentially be recycled. At this time of writing, water based paint technology isn’t quite at the level required for kitchen doors in terms of wear and chemical resistance. The paint we use is PU, however the VOCs are kept to a minimal level thanks to the use of the latest technology. The doors are finished by machines which keep wastage to a minimum and filtering to a maximum. The advantage of lacquered doors is that damages can be touched up, repaired and ultimately completely re-lacquered for ultimate longevity This cannot be said for lower cost laminated doors with edging. To go greener still natural wood veneered doors are an option.
By using the best state-of-the-art hardware, very little seems goes wrong – if it does replacing a hinge or a drawer is no trouble and would never require the rip-out of a complete kitchen.
Another consideration is locality. By sourcing you cabinets locally or at least made in Britain - none of the environmental impact of long distance shipping is an issue.
In summary (even if you don’t buy a Tomas kitchen) get the design right and go for the best you can get. Remember ‘cheap’ isn’t always ‘cheaper’ in the long run – as they say you’ll never regret buying quality.
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