Friday, 11 March 2016

How To Choose An Amazing Carpenter!

Thank you for your questions about how we chose our excellent team who helped me turn my vision into a reality. This post is for you...and the rest of you quietly curious ones too!

Door panelling
Our double door panelling

For fitting our new high skirting boards, wide architraves and window and door panelling, we chose to work with Neil Bathgate Carpentry and Joinery, who are based in West Oxfordshire. These pictures are this company's own work. Aren't they gorgeous?

{Plus I'm sharing some more of the work we've had done by Neil and his team in our living room}

Hand Built White Shaker Style Kitchen

But I didn't want to make our choice based only on beautiful images.
Here are my thoughts on how to choose a great carpenter.

Good mix of styles
Look at the company's website and take a good look at their portfolio. It's easy to be seduced by one show-stopping piece of work but make sure that they are able to turn their design eye to a wide range of styles - not just one look that is churned out again and again. This demonstrates that the carpenter have really been listening to their clients.

Look at these two very different benches made by Neil Bathgate Carentry and Joinery, which help make my point:

Expertise In Both Building Work AND Carpentry
In any project designed from scratch, both these skills are needed, and if one element is lacking then the whole look can easily fall apart. You want your carpenter to understand what to do if and when challenges arise. 

{Wonky walls and curvy old plaster, we're talking about you!}

High skirting boards
Early stages of skirting boards fitting

Window panelling
Our window panelling

Project Photos
Make sure that when you look at any potential trades person's previous work, you're shown projects from lots of different angles. You don't just want to see the view from the best angles. You need to see a 'warts and all' range of shots!

Recommendation And Testimonials
This is the only way to really see past the glitz and the glamour of well-presented web-sites. How's this for an impressive list (click on the projects to see lots of testimonials from delighted clients)...

Window panelling
Window panelling

Window panelling
Window panelling

This was a big, expensive job and I wanted to get it just right. We looked round at lots of different companies and Neil Bathgate stood out a mile in the areas I've mentioned.

Window panelling
Window panelling

Wide architraves
Wide architraves

And it's a decision that I never once regretted: Neil and his team were a pleasure to work with from start to finish. Yes, he has an amazing portfolio but ALSO the credentials and fantastic customer service to back it up.
Sounding very good to me...

Images 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 10 and 11 via Neil Bathgate  Carpentry and Joinery
All others: Modern Country Style

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