One of the major things that I struggle with in our 1300 square foot home is space!! Before building the above nook area just off of our kitchen, we hardly had any room for food storage. When my husband designed this nook, he created it so that the benches could serve as additional storage space. I mean, where is one supposed to put all those extra large Costco goods?! Our slim 12 inch wide pantry was not cutting it!
Before this bench and table set up, we had a high-top kitchen table in this area. The table was great, however, it severed more as a topical storage space then as a place for us to eat. Now we have a nicely laid-out area for hidden storage and for eating! For added flare, I tore down one set of the vertical blinds and replaced them with the curtains that you see. The area made our kitchen look much larger than it actually was. Plus, how cute are nooks?!
Building the nook took several steps that ill mention now.
First, remove the existing base trim and frame the nook out of regular 2x4 lumber (which I had on hand).
Next step, head to Menards and pick up 2 sheets of their white bead-board paneling and some MDF and/or poplar for trim. Also some piano hinges for opening the seat tops and some white paint. It would also be a good idea to pickup some base and shoe if you do not have enough leftover from what was removed from the walls already. Attach the bead-board to the face of the framing.
Next, install the verticals and horizontal 1x4 pieces. Cut and install bench tops and wood along the wall edge. Be sure not to keep too close to the wall edge because the tops wont open well if the hinges are too close to the wall. I think i kept off the wall about 2 or 3 inches. Install the base and shoe around the perimeter and all that is left is paint.
Fill any nail holes and sand any imperfections in the wood before your ready to paint. Roll on two coats of paint after a good priming and you're done. All that is left are cushions, pillows and curtains, and your project is complete. We added a custom built table made out of reclaimed poplar and copper legs that my husband build to fit the space.
The pillows are from Pottery Barn, and the bench cushions are custom made from Etsy. You will most likely need to have cushions custom sewn to fit your space. I received a few quotes online from companies who would charge about $500 for cushions (yikes!).
The Etsy store that I worked with took our measurements. I selected the fabric, and they shipped me my cushion covers WITHOUT foam inserts for $180. I then went to the fabric store (with coupons!) and purchased the foam for the cushions. I saved a ton of money with this approach, and the custom cushions were a perfect fit!