Beautiful Breakfast Nooks for the Modern Family
Nothing beats a breakfast nook. A breakfast nook is a place in the kitchen for that first cup of morning coffee or tea, a place where the kids can scarf their breakfast before dashing off to school, and finally (mercifully) a place for us parents to breathe a sigh of relief when the house quiets down again. In my 1930s-era house, I have such a breakfast nook, a traditional part of most older homes and a casual eating area that keeps the dining room protected from family chaos.
Although it is darling with its arched entry, my breakfast nook’s diminuitive dimensions were really scaled for a family of four. Squeeze in a fifth guest or family dog? Forget it! So what is tempting me lately is what architects and designers are creating now: larger areas for in-kitchen dining, lounging, whatever—turning the hearth of the home into increasingly useful gathering spots. Let’s check out a few I found as inspiration:
First, in the image above, do you see what’s extended beyond the main kitchen space? A sun-bathed kitchen nook (thanks to an impressive partial glass roof). Some bench seating with an array of colorful pillows and a couple of cafe chairs is all that’s required. (I think I would just live there personally…) (Image via Imperfect Interiors)
Two birds with one stone? Dining and storage together for the win-win. Check out those easy-access cubbies under the L-shaped bench seat. Man I could’ve used that storage back in the day for the kids’ toys and art supplies. (Image via Dwell).
Gather ‘round—not only does this breakfast nook share the outstanding natural light of the first example, but with all that sun it seems to be the perfect location for some art as an unexpected gallery. Whether kids’ art or fine art, I love the casual way this collection has been displayed surrounding this booth-style eating area. (Image via Pinterest)
Breakfast nook or conservatory? I’m into the palms surrounding this table, sort of a throwback to the Victorian way of life yet updated with an oversized, tufted booth looking very modern in white with a matching Saarinen table. (Image via Apartment Therapy).
Wowzer! This is the breakfast nook of my dreams for my Spanish-style house. Let’s dive deep into a Moorish aesthetic, play with bold color and pattern, and start make Tuesdays tangine night. I can already smell smoked paprika, can you? (Image via Design Sponge)
Designer Trick Alert! Small dining areas don’t seem so petite with large-scale art hanging above (image via Domino)
This one isn’t really a nook, but more a gathering spot implied by that long table and banquette, ready for family game night with easy access to the snacks…(Image via Amber Interiors).
Another example of what a great table, banquette, and fantastic woven chairs can do to create a nook without the booth or cafe table look. (Image via House & Home)
Industrial chic mixed with luxe is a sexy choice in this kitchen combo of stainless steel and yellow velvet. The dog is keeping it all real because you and I know where he’s napping while Mom and Dad are off to work… (Image via Vogue).
Why have a table at all? Let’s ditch it, the cafe chairs, and benches and convert the breakfast room to a lounge with cushy armchairs and an ottoman in a lively pattern. Look at that wallpaper—now those are plants that will never die! (Image via One Kings Lane).
Where do you eat in your house? Breakfast nook, dining room, or sofa?