A kitchen banquette is a great way to bring a cozy and casual vibe into your home, whether you’re willing to tackle a booth-like space (like in the photo above) or a simple table and bench in the corner of the room.
Tear your eyes away from the two adorable little twins in the photo above, and instead focus on the seating setup we have in this space. Rather than try to squeeze a cramped table and chairs into this niche, interior designer Lulu de Kwiatkowski outfits her kitchen nook with a warm, weathered farm table, two built-in benches wrapped in beaded board, and some comfy green cushions. By building the benches into the wall, you’re actually saving space, making room for a larger table.
Perhaps you don’t have quite the space for a pair of built-in benches, but you can achieve the same look and feel with one bank of benches, paired with a set of chairs. In the photo above, dinner guests still get the same intimate dining experience as the pair of built-in benches above, but just through a different setup. Aside from just a space saver, the dining banquette above is a study in texture. Combine the rustic wooden finish of the table and chairs with the subtle wood grain of the walls and the knubby, soft banquette fabric, and you have a balance of soft and hard surfaces, as well as a balance of light and dark. Though this space is entirely brown, it doesn’t feel dingy or flat because of the variety of textures and shades of brown. Rather, it feels layered, casual, and still chic.
In the photo above, the homeowner takes a much more simple approach to the banquette. With just a simple slipcovered bench, she achieves the cozy, casual feel of a banquette without committing to a full built-in space. Add in a burst of mint green color, and the effect is light, airy, and beachy casual.
While most of the banquettes we’ve shown you are light and casual, the space above (designed by Christina Murphy and Meg Gabriele for Lonny Magazine) feels luxe and glamorous. The jet black window frame and bench backs add a more moody, luxurious vibe to this space, and when paired with a pair of gold pendant lamps, the result is a space that combines the best of casual dining with the romantic mood of your favorite restaurant.
Next time you’re short on space, have some fun with your interiors and create a dining space that is casual, cozy, and the perfect spot for your morning cup of joe and your blogreader!
See more inspiration and ideas in our Places series here on the Apron blog.