So it shouldn't surprise anyone that I'm already planning out updates to our breakfast nook. Although our nook is right next to the kitchen, so technically it could be lumped into our current kitchen update (if you think like my husband anyway). To me though separate space = separate budget = separate project!
Here is a look at our nook area as it was last Friday. We now have new tile (but not yet grout) up above the kitchen peninsula, so ignore the bare patch of drywall in the photo. Also, kindly ignore the strip of uneven wall and baseboard to the far right, since that is still leftover from when we took down the half wall railing that used to separate the nook and the family room. We'll be fixing that after we're done with the kitchen stuff.
Basically our nook is now just an open space between the kitchen and the family room that features a large window. It isn't a huge space, and it also is part pathway between the two rooms, so it can't be overflowing with furniture. But it can definitely stand to get a little love.
This is an old photo from about a year ago, and as you can see, just about anything would be an upgrade to the card table and old wicker chairs I've had there as a placeholder since we moved in!
In this other old photo (with the now finished fireplace in the background) you can better see how much space we have to work with in the nook, on the other side of the kitchen peninsula. Definitely not a huge space, but an important middle section of our long kitchen/nook/family room space. Some day we'll put in hardwood floors so we won't have that awkward flooring transition between the ugly tile and cheap laminate, but that is still a couple of years away.
One final old photo, which also impacts the plans for the breakfast nook. This was taken standing in the entryway, and as you can see, it is a straight shot down the hall to the nook. So in my planning for this area I've had to take into consideration that whatever goes here will be directly viewable to anyone coming to our front door.
So, with those things in mind--something that looks nice from the front door, not a lot of space to work with, a lot of foot traffic through the space, and obviously it has got to coordinate with the family room and the updates we're currently working on in the kitchen--this is what I'm planning: adding a storage bench that I will custom build to fit perfectly under the window, with a table pulled up to the bench and three bistro chairs around the table.
Since I love sharing inspiration photos, here are some breakfast nooks with window benches that I like:
And these two don't have the benches under windows, but I still love that you can see how much closer the table can be to the wall with the use of a bench.
Source: couldn't find the original source, only the jpeg link via Pinterest
And here a quick photoshopped version of what our breakfast nook window will look with with a bench under it (the kitchen here is also photoshopped so you get an idea of how it will look once we're done with the new backsplash, have mounted shelves next to the cabinet and painted the cabinets white).
In addition to extra storage, the main reason I'm really loving the window bench idea because it will allow us to shift all of the seating in the nook toward the window, opening up the path from the kitchen to family room more so than would a traditional table with chairs on all four sides.
I have been lusting after this table since last fall. I just love the chunky legs that would go great with our dining room table I built, and extra thick table top. And it is reasonably priced, as far as tables go anyway. Sadly, when I wanted to order it around Christmas time, it was backordered until April for a while, and then completely removed from the site.
I did find a post on how to DIY a similar looking table here though. It didn't have the thick table top that I loved in the West Elm version, but building something was definitely something I was considering over the past few months.
Luckily though, the Emmerson Round Table is back! And I just ordered it this weekend. And it is now available in two color options, when previously it was only available in a reclaimed pine. But I love the darker chestnut color even more, so that's what we're getting.
I am so excited! Even though it would have been fun to build a similar table (and really challenging, round tables are hard), I know I'll be much happier with the store bought version because of the thicker top that I just wasn't going to easily be able replicate myself.
I think it will go very nicely with our wood window sashes, not to mention the other dark wood accents we have in the family room, like our walnut coffee table I built (which I still need to share the final photos of, oops!)
Here's the photoshopped picture with the table in front of the window bench. Pictured with the popular Tabouret Bistro chairs from Overstock.com, although I haven't pulled the trigger on those yet. If we do go with those chairs though I'm debating sewing chair pads for them in bright blue, but we'll see how comfy they end up being on their own. We already own the Tabouret stools and they're fine as is. So we'll see! I might just end up making them to add some more color to the area. And of course, a cute vase or tray on the new table will help in that department as well!
Do you have any small spaces in your home you're trying to add function to? And is anyone else a fan of benches in breakfast nooks? Got any fun inspiration photos to add?