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Over the course of the last year or so, I've been upgrading my old cheap white kitchen appliances for one's that have a polished stainless steel or chrome effect - I just think they look much nicer.
My kettle I upgraded about 6 months ago from a £5 'Value' Kettle to this sleek and shiny Breville kettle. ( I also have a quickcup machine, but that now lives upstairs in the bedroom). My decision was largely based on looks, as I found the black and stainless steel design, coupled with the bright blue illumination when the product was in use, very attractive. I'm not going to spend ages describing it's every gleaming curve, as there is a lovely image that does the job better than I ever could.
However, you can't see the base particularly well in the image, and the base is actually, in our household, one of the more useful features. You see, it is a *360 degree rotational base* which, to you and me, just means we can plonk the kettle back on the base any old how, without having to make sure bit a goes into bit b. This doesn't sound much, but when I'm a right and my boyfriend is a lefty, it does make it that little bit easier, as we can position this anywhere knowing both of use can use it., especially as it has a fill window on each side.It also has some non slip features, making it safe and secure on the worktop.
However, with the fill windows, I do find the blue colour does make it harder to see what level you have filled it to than if the window was clear.
The kettle is REALLY noisy in use though. I'm not talking a little gurgling here, but actual annoying noisiness . Whilst this might be handy if you're in another room watching TV, as you can hear when it stops making noise and know that it's clicked, it's horrible when you're in the same room trying to listen to the radio. Luckily, the kettle is fast to boil, so it isn't a noise I have to endure for too long.
That said, it is incredibly easy to use. There is a simple button located on the top curve of the handle for turning it on, and the lid flips up easily for filling, without falling back down immediately as some others do. The lid is, perhaps, a little stiff, but I consider that an advantage as it does mean it stays up when filling. The kettle has a height a little under 23 centimetres, so does fit easily under my kitchen tap for filling - unlike my old one, which was much taller and had to be held under at an angle .
Of course, the fact that this kettle is considerably shorter does mean it has a slightly smaller capacity than my old one, 1.5 litres compared to 2l. But with there only being two of us in the house that drink hot drinks, this is fine, easily enough for a few large mugs or a nice teapotful.
The kettle does get scaled up pretty easily, and the scale seems to cling more to this one than my old plastic one . However, with this one having a concealed element, it is much easier to de-scale and clean, as I can get in there with a scrubber if I need to remove any stubborn patches.
Overall, I really like this kettle. The blue light makes it incredibly pretty when in use (and could potentially be an excellent safety feature for those with younger children), I find it generally attractive (and have since purchased a matching toaster), it's fast, easy to fill, and easy to clean, with a large enough capacity to sit my family. I also think the price I paid (on amazon) was fairly reasonable at just under £30, though I would certainly thought twice about paying the full RRP of £59.99.
However, the noise levels are so terrible that I really feel I have to be quite harsh, so despite it's excellent looks and performance, I am deducting two stars.
Short name: Breville VKJ386