Tell us about how the process of creating one of the ranges begins? Is there a sketching and detailing process?
The very first step is the design of the kitchen. We have two phases of designing: the first one is the “Commercial Drawing”, which is presented by us and then discussed and approved by the customer. This phase deals with the external and visible aspect of the kitchen. The experience of the designer is essential in order to propose and agree on drawings that are not just aesthetical, but functional and easy to maintain – the balance of these three points is very important.
The second phase is the “Executive Drawing”, where we design all the kitchen parts, which are then manufactured in the factory. These parts are almost always newly designed, as we create these 100% bespoke without any modular units.
Once the design is decided, what is the next step? Is each of the elements built separately and then combined at a later stage?
Once the “Commercial Drawing” is approved, we design all the elements and these drawings are passed on to the Production Manager, who will organise and schedule the manufacture of every single part. Obviously, our Production Manager will optimise the schedule in accordance with the order inbox. Some parts will have to be cut and shaped and then passed on to be enamelled in a special colour. They will then join the rest of the project parts during the finishing phase. Once all the parts have been manufactured, they are assembled together and passed onto the last step: the Finish.
Tell us more about the process of crafting the elements – what does this involve?
Every single part that is designed and manufactured especially for that specific project requires very particular attention during the manufacturing process. All these elements are unique and have to be treated as such. We do not have stocks of materials, but we manufacture them as required and according to the customer’s need. So, generally speaking, the approach for each distinctive element is different.
As an example, our way of designing a cooking island is different. We do not draw small modular units close to each other with a unique worktop. Our work is different. The island is our special and unique module. This means that all the parts have logic together and have been designed to stay together. Our island has common technical compartments, which eases the installation and any potential technical intervention in the future. The sizes of doors and cabinets are specific to that single project.
Any more details on the steps involved in creating the ranges that you would like to share?
We would like to underline a part of the process that is often under-evaluated but is essential to the success of the project: the Designers in the Technical Department.
Once the “Commercial Drawings” are confirmed by the customer, the Technical Department has to draw every single part that composes the kitchen. This phase can last for days or even weeks depending on the complexity of the project. The way these parts are drawn makes the difference when assembling, installing and maintaining them.
What about small details, finishing touches and the coloured elements – how and when are these incorporated?
The Finish is a fully integrated step of the project. It is certainly not the only step that makes a DeManincor range special, as this speciality starts from the first drawing.
The Finish hides a lot of small details that only an attentive eye can see at first glance. We think about the toe kick on the short sides that enhance the comfort of an island; the thickness of materials; the extremely heavy-duty self-crafted hinges that hide the real weight of steel sashes; the anti-scratch colours that are porcelain-enamelled and not painted; the sash decoration that extends in-depth and not only in the façade; etc. These very special finishes on individually designed ranges and cabinetry create a DeManincor fully bespoke kitchen.
How many people are involved in the manufacturing of each product?
We work in a team, and we face every single project as a team. All the staff are specialised and have their own qualities. Everybody also has the opportunity to enhance their skills. However, in a relatively small and familiar organisation, people are used to facing and solving challenging situations. This is made easier thanks to the solidity of the group’s experience.
What is the most difficult part of crafting the ranges?
The materials we use in the projects have special features that can be both the material’s strength and its weakness at the same time. Porcelain-enamelled parts have dimension limits as they need to be baked in an oven at 800°C. Cooktops can overpass size limits and can be welded to extremely long formats, which can create challenging situations when handled onsite.
However, we always take into consideration the handling of the parts and the accessibility to the final place of installation when we design the kitchens. This is where an experienced team of kitchen designers can make the difference, and makes the customer’s dream kitchen feasible and installable, for a perfect final result.
Are there any elements that required very skilled hands?
Experience is an important value for the company. We boast the presence of workers who have been actively collaborating with the company for more than 30 years and share their extraordinary experience in the creation of our products. We try to combine these senior workers with the new staff in order to create the perfect work teams. We are proud to say that we have a couple of satisfied fathers working with their sons, and perfectly representing the generational shift that is a key element in a 5th generation family business.
The company has been in the family for 5 generations, and with it, very particular know-how has been passed down over the years. Tell us more about this knowledge and what in particular it includes…
A long-living family business is led by something that goes beyond the mere financial profit: it is led by passion and commitment. Today, Walter de Manincor is the Managing Director at 75 years old and works day by day with his son Mattia (45). Walter’s father used to come to the factory up to his 90s.
The experience comes directly from a life in the business, facing all the crises, new developments and new technologies of the industry. This long-term experience gives every generation the knowledge to face any project and any enquiry.
How do you think this generational know-how gives DeManincor an edge in the manufacturing process?
The Management’s direct experience in the business is a huge plus. In the case of the DeManincor, the know-how comes from the real discussion with customers about their projects. Customers can be very demanding in terms of aesthetics, like an experienced interior architect; or in terms of functionality, precision and hygiene like a three-Michelin-star chef. In any case, every single project is different and enriches our skill to listen and understand the customers’ needs. This is the first step to having a happy client.
It is also clear that the direct experience in creating kitchens for Grande Cuisine qualifies us as extremely reliable kitchen designers that are able to transfer commercial experience to residential needs.
How would you say you incorporate tradition into the manufacturing process and thus the final product?
Tradition, and thus experience, is transferred and breathed into each project from its very beginning in the design phase. Our experience in creating various kitchens allows our team to advise why one type of equipment is better than another one in a specific situation, or for a certain number of guests. This tradition is continually developing and being enriched by our commitment to using state-of-the-art technology. This way we can present colourful enamelled cooking ranges that are digitised and remotely controlled, while still giving the cooking experience that is close to a charcoal grill or a wood-burning cookstove.
Where do you source the raw materials and which would you say are the most challenging/easiest to work with?
All the raw materials are purchased, when possible, in Italy. Luckily, Italy is a fantastic country where a lot of exceptionally high-quality products are crafted. The company is linked to its territory and believes in its a value. Suppliers are considered as integrated parts of the chain, and that is why we have very long-standing reliable partners that we work with.
Tell us more about the manufacturing facility – where is this located and what makes it special?
DeManincor is located in Trento, in the middle of the Italian Alps. This proximity to the mountains and woods is what initially allowed a small village blacksmith to transform into a wood-burning cooker manufacturer. Once the adventure in the kitchen started with home wood-fired cookers, the development was quite easy and fast. First mountain refuges were installed in the region of Trento, then small inns in an always wider area, up to the modern high-end restaurants that we install around the world today.
This evolution makes the company knowledge complete. Throughout the years we have manufactured ranges supplied by wood logs, fuel, gas and electricity. Today, our professional induction hobs can even be supervised remotely.
Why are you passionate about crafting the ranges in-house? What advantage do you believe this gives the products?
The in-house crafting gives two massive advantages: knowledge and control.
Knowledge of all the elements that compose the cooking machines, how to design them, how to manufacture them, how to assemble them, how to install them and last but not least, how to maintain them if needed.
Control in the production process, from the development of the first drawing to the installation on site and the final handover.
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