Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Kitchen Banquettes ~ You know you want one!

Bench seating in a kitchen is something I have been asked for by my clients more frequently, especially for larger families and families with kids.
It evokes relaxed lunches and quiet time with a magazine and a coffee.

Contrary to some beliefs that bench seating is dated and uncomfortable you will see that bench seating can be and stylish and very comfy. As it is part of the fitted cabinetry in some states it can be exempt from sales tax.. bonus?
When designing a custom bench you will need to keep in mind the access and egress of people sliding in and sitting down, in my experience I have found that pedestal tables work best, or tables that have the legs recessed back from the front edge of the table. 
Kitchen banquettes are also great for seasonal storage, access to drawers under bench seating can be awkward and not suggested for daily use, lift top benches are somewhat easier. 
The depths of benches may vary, a comfortable depth is 21" -24" clear, deeper if you want to add throw cushions. Not too deep though as you will want some back support.
Banquettes also save space as they are tucked away against a wall or in a window recess.
Upholstered seats and backs are a great way to introduce color and texture to a kitchen This, in an all wood room and hard surfaces found on counter tops and appliances is a well needed relief. 

Please enjoy the images that I have put together for you for some kitchen inspiration. if you have any questions please leave your comment below.

Designed by Kathy Smith, image courtesy of House Beautiful

This sculptured upholstered bench seat with decorative skirt is made out of a neutral faux
leather. It has timeless elegance. With the material chosen it is very easy to wipe clean. The throw cushions provide some pattern and fresh color to the scheme.

Designed by Ashley Whittaker, image courtesy of House Beautiful

I love the tufted pale blue upholstered seat and back cushion. These are removable for cleaning and there could be storage in bench. The apple green patterned wallpaper makes a soft contrast to the gleaming white woodwork. The 'odd' Windsor style chairs in a darker wood provides interest.

Designed by Aerin Lauder

This eating area screams kids, fun and family! 
Absolutely adore the chairs , love the beachy blue and white upholstery and floor color.

Designed by Celerie Kimbal via Design Manefest

Love! Love! Love! I'm really into this green color lately. The generous over stuffed seat with detail trim piping is perfect, the back is upholstered for comfort and seems deep enough for throw cushions. The pedestal contemporary lacquered table makes sliding in and out of the bench easy. The bamboo chairs with white seats, striped rug and gorgeous chandelier complete this perfect picture.

(No source, do you know who designed this fab space?)

A favorite combination of pale blue and dark wood works every time. The muted striped fabric is fun and the loose cushions make this setup less formal. A classic style pedestal table and clean lined upholstered chairs are in a darker contrasting color which is carried over to the chandelier and sconces. This is really well balanced and very symmetrical arrangement.

Designed by me :) image courtesy of House Beautiful

I seriously forgot about this, I came upon my own project whilst browsing through images for this post!
This is a mudroom which forms part of a larger kitchen I designed here in NY, the bench was built for the large busy family that live here, what you cannot see is a huge double coat closet opposite the bench which is custom designed to hold various sports equipment, boots, shoes and coats. The seat lifts for storage of bigger sports equipment. We decided against a seat cushion as the kids often came in all muddy and we opted for natural oak finish as the hand painted paint  finish would not have held up too well in this case.

I was sent this image by my good friend Charmaine, her company Shore Bet Constructions of Bay Head NJ just completed this bench in a beach house project they are working on and I just had to add it in! Gorgeous right?
For further info on Shore Bet Constructions contact Tel 732 899 1762 or 732 996 3455

I really hope that you enjoyed this post, please leave a comment either way! 

Hope you are all having a good start to the New Year,

houzz interior design ideas


  1. I feel the same as to have an island, or bank seating, or even a SOFA in the kitchen if there is room. I have designed a sofa into my kitchen and we all use it every single day. I do the same for clients. Keep up the great work, great photos!!!

    Happy blogging!!
    Lynne xx

  2. I always wanted this banquette seating when my kiddies were younger. That is a gorgeous space you designed there my dear, wow! :)

  3. Thanks Lynne, love the idea of a sofa! Im loving Blogging, thanks for the love!

  4. Hi Irma, thanks for your kind words, a banquette can be very grown up too! I cant wait to add one similar to picture 5 in my own kitchen!

  5. Hi Dionne, I too love a great banquette ..
    and after having had the chance to have one in our last house it's the easiest way of eating as a family especially w/small kids. Great post. xo Jennifer @decaporter

  6. and.. just saw you have me on your blog roll..think I am going to cry! Thank you so much. xo J

  7. Hi Jennifer, thanks for reading and your comment. Please don't cry ;) I am a huge fan of your blog!


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