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A Quick Farmhouse Dining Nook Update

While I desperately want to take my time decorating this house (and I am, in some ways) there are a few furniture pieces that are going to be custom (aka long lead times) that I really need to get going on (our green living room sofa being another). Today is about the dining nook up in the corner. She is a tight little corner that we already use a lot, but the plan was always to have a built-in banquette that would be inviting but simple, almost like that restaurant booth at a bar in the corner. I would say that right now we eat dinner here 3-4 times a week (sharing the schedule with the kitchen island on late nights after sports when we are more rushed, special sunroom meals on Sundays and some Mondays, and movie meals most Friday/Saturday nights if we don’t eat out or go to a friend’s house). It’s also a great place to do future homework and the kids draw here a lot.

Here’s the corner that we are talking about. And in case you are wondering if I’ve come up with a solution for the walls/trim feeling unfinished, I have not and I’m still unhappy with it but am not going to make a move until I feel it’s the right one – read this post to get caught up on that. But as you can see, the height of the paneling will dictate the height of the back of the booth – which is 32″ (the scale of the room is big – high ceilings, big windows which make the paneling look small but its 12″ paneling).

For fun here’s a look at what this space looked like when we purchased it…

It’s still to me wild how much has changed and how much better it feels for our family.

With the layout of the living/kitchen, it was hard to squeeze in a dining table mostly because the fireplace dictated the center of the living room, aka the conversation area. So at times during the design process, we had a little dining table floating between the kitchen and living but it didn’t feel right. We then realized that if we built in this corner, we’d have the space to seat 4 – 6 (little ones) here. So that is why the door is slammed against the side of the kitchen.

The pocket door goes to the family room (and yes it’s tight) but when you are sitting here it feels good!

When we first moved in we used our IKEA tulip table here with four chairs and it was fine and helped us really get a sense of the space. It also confirmed that we liked sitting here, that it’s a good location from the kitchen and does feel cozy.

The IKEA table here is 40.5″ in diameter, so we are thinking a 30″x60″ oval table – making the pass-through space easier to navigate and easier to get in and out of.

Here’s more context – with the kitchen a total mess, but you get the idea (we shot this for the living room update shoot, but purposefully hid the kitchen while wanting to show you the relationship with the living room.

That hanging sconce is vintage from The Rejuvenation Vintage Collection and it’s incredible (see this post for more info). It was hung too high and to the left so it’s now been moved down.

You can see the relationship between the living room and the dining nook there – it’s definitely close enough.

So where are we now?

This was a few months ago, but we have made a teeny tiny bit of progress. I found a super cute farm table at a thrift store that was a much better scale for the interim (and we use the tulip table for sewing upstairs now).

Here it is. It gave us a better idea of what size would work. It’s 30″x48″ and we are hoping to add another foot onto the table, as an oval. I really need to get on designing it. I know that we will use Sunbrella on the cushion but unsure if we want a back cushion or just pretty wood with pillows or hanging slim cushions – again we don’t have a ton of space.

More to come obviously…but wanted to give you a quick farmhouse update while I had you. xx

*Pretty Photos by Kaitlin Green

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TBN
1 month ago

Such a good way to utilize that corner. I can see this turning into a homework space as your children get older….SO GOOD to provide them a nearby space that is not your kitchen island. I love the idea of thin cushion hanging of the wall for your nook.

Lindsay Kolderup
1 month ago

Love the nook! btw Personally I think just some color above the paneling and you’ll be good to go in the living room. Just a little too all white now IMO. Can’t wait to see the green couch! Doubtless you can play off that. And, expensive as it is, cool vintage persian rugs could be a thread throughout the spaces (kitchen, family room, living room). I think just less grey and white, and more color, more solid, larger furniture to complement the scale of the room. (we had to sadly give away a ton of our furniture that we really liked when we moved to our new house–the scale of the rooms was so much bigger, our furniture looked dinky!) Also, more color and a bit more black perhaps to play off the black chairs at the kitchen island. The kitchen is so beautiful with just the right amount of color, and then the living room is just too white/grey in comparison. (but obviously this is just my amateur, and unsolicited 🙂 opinion. Thanks again for the honor of participating!!)

Nora
1 month ago

Love the nook and the process post! And chiming in to agree with this comment 🙂 Thinking about colour in the living room etc, with the dove blues you’ve been using, I was wondering if some of these palettes might work? https://laurelberninteriors.com/2015/04/22/gustavian-swedish-colors-that-might-surprise-you/
https://www.oldworldfarmhouse.com/tag/swedish-country-style/
http://theswedishfurniture.com/archives/swedish-folk-country-interior-pictures
Similarly, these Rose Uniacke shades came to mind: https://www.roseuniacke.com/paint-collection?p=6. Just a thought! Or I suppose bringing in pink, red and occasional pops of warm yellow/cognac (guessing from your personal style, I think), is a second idea. In any case, thanks again for sharing all of your thinking through of different areas in the farmhouse – it’s fascinating and helpful.

kelly
1 month ago

I love the chairs – with the curved wooden arms. Do they have a leather seat? Are they comfortable? Source? Thanks.

Kj
1 month ago
Reply to  kelly

Here is the post about those vintage Cherner chairs. The seats were later recovered in leather. https://stylebyemilyhenderson.com/blog/updated-la-dining-room-dream-dining-chairs-kinda You can find them vintage or new here: https://chernerchair.com/collections/dining-chairs

🥰 Rusty
1 month ago
Reply to  Kj

Kj….are you an employee now????😁
I hope the answer’s yes coz you do a fab job!

Kj
1 month ago
Reply to  🥰 Rusty

Wouldn’t that be fun? But I don’t think that’s a real job: “looking things up on the Internet.” I do love researching things, and always dreamed of getting a doctorate. But the only things I’m really interested in now are design, books, movies and TV shows. Probably not a lot of room for serious scholarship there!

1 month ago
Reply to  Kj

KJ – you could go and get a PhD in philosophy and study aesthetics. Not a ton of people working on it, but it exists!

Kj
1 month ago
Reply to  Heather

Interesting! My undergrad was accounting (and 30+ years ago), I’d probably need an arts/humanities degree before any program would accept me. It might be a bit too much work for a passion project.

Pinny
1 month ago

I love the nook location and purpose. A hanging cushion with a slipcover fabric would let you remove the fabric for cleaning or seasonal changes (decorate without cluttering).

Before finalizing your banquette plan, consider your window treatments. If you go with curtains to add texture, light control and/or privacy, it may impact your dining nook design plan. Curtains might interfere with your wired-in sconce placement, but what’s a couple hundred more dollars of an electrician’s time at this point?

On the dining bench, I’d love for you to have a drawer that pulls out. Your house obviously has enough storage, but a drawer or even a shelf under the bench would provide a quick resting place for whatever was happening on the table immediately before eating (homework, computer, crafting).

Pinny
1 month ago
Reply to  Pinny

Actually, what about another idea for the dining nook?

I really think your living room needs curtains. They will add texture and also unify/simplify the look of the various sizes of windows/sliding doors throughout the space. BUT curtains will not work well with a banquette attached to the wall.

So, instead of a banquette, how about 4 comfortable (upholstered seat, at least) easy to clean (Sunbrella) chairs? Pull in extra wooden chairs when needed. Think about it 😃

Pinny
1 month ago
Reply to  Pinny

The plan for chairs at the dining nook would work best without the 2 swivel chairs nearby. Too many chairs would look to cluttered and tentative.

🥰 Rusty
1 month ago
Reply to  Pinny

I cannot see those boucle chairs staying for long…. boucke is on the ‘out’ trend and fast!

Jess L.
1 month ago

Love the process post, thanks for the update!

Mollie
1 month ago

We have a built in like this and it’s great. All our meals and a lot of life are here! Ours is upholstered in back too which id recommend if you can make it work. Doesn’t require as much “styling” with pillows to look finished – which is nice with kids since they toss them everywhere when they’re sitting. It has also become an A+ nap location for adults. 🙂

Kj
1 month ago

Burning question: is your beadboard 10” or 12”? Because in the pantry post: “Throughout the house (where appropriate) we designed and installed this awesome paneling. It’s a custom run from a company in Portland called Creative Woodworking and they are 10″ boards with a 1/2″ bead.”

pam
1 month ago
Reply to  Kj

I’m thinking it’s gotta be 10″ based on height comparison with the kitchen cabinets.

Kj
1 month ago
Reply to  pam

Now I wonder if the answer is: BOTH. In the pics above, does the family/TV room beadboard seem narrower than the kitchen/living room beadboard? Maybe the pantry and family/TV room have 10” and the kitchen/living room have 12”?

Allana
1 month ago

I would have the back cushions made out of VERY firm foam and not attached. Easy to change your mind on and sub out for pillows. With an angled cut (similar to the mountain house vintage sofa in the living room) and the wall in the back they’ll stay in place and be cosy.

Also: armless chairs. Being able to tuck the chairs in all the way is a game changer when space is tight. When I switched mine out it made the space feel much cleaner and more airy.

Rachel
1 month ago

Hi Emily,
A word of warning on the table shape – we had a corner banquette with an oval tulip table and it was a major pain, especially with kids – it’s almost impossible to be seated at the appropriate distance from the table – some people will be too close and others will be too far (the corners/edges won’t really be an option for seating and eating because you’re too far from the table). We switched to a rectangular pedestal table and everything became so much more comfortable. Just something to consider – can’t wait to see what you do with the space as everything so far is incredible.

Michelle
1 month ago
Reply to  Rachel

That’s a great point; I was thinking that an oval tulip table would look lovely but the corner ends are a problem for those seated there!

I would recommend rethinking the wall lamp. It’s funky but neither the style nor the placement seem to work here. The light will never be deep enough over the table to provide good light, and the cord looks awful. The contrast with the adjacent more traditional sconce is also too chaotic.

I think it would be helpful to have more process posts – but also a reminder of why you had to have the pocket door there (without it you have a respectable width for the dining nook). And perhaps discussion of “things we overlooked or didn’t prioritize” (like cord placement!) that you might reconsider now, that might be helpful for future renovators.

There are a lot of lovely elements here, but I also think you need to edit and pare back because it’s just so much visual chaos.

Alice
1 month ago
Reply to  Michelle

I’m glad someone has mentioned that wild, kinky black cord.

Ann
1 month ago
Reply to  Alice

I think the shape and vibe of the wall lamp are cool, but I wonder if it could be more successfully utilized in the family room near the couch perhaps. It seems maybe a touch small for this space? But perhaps it will make more sense visually once decisions are made in table, bench, etc.

Ellen
1 month ago
Reply to  Alice

I disagree that the cord is “wild and kinky”. to me, it presents an essence of ‘realness’ in everyday life. Cords are going to happen, and here it is clearly intentional. I have the same set up in my corner banquet, with an accordion lamp and a clear sight of the cord plugging into the wall.

Kellie
1 month ago
Reply to  Rachel

Interesting point about the oval table. Emily’s banquette dining table at the mountain house was oval, so she must have some experience with that set-up.

Kj
1 month ago
Reply to  Kellie
Abby
1 month ago
Reply to  Rachel

We have also struggled with an oval tulip table – as a family of four. Even without the banquette obstacle, spacing is usually awkward and feels unsettled.

Jen
1 month ago

Kuddos and applause for posting a true to life kitchen photo, and sharing the path of your process! If readers feel the pressure to have rooms ‘designed and done’ in our homes, I can only imagine what you feel at times. But the process is one thing I really enjoy in this space, I learn so much. It’s fun to consider the options, possibilities and different ideas. On a mom note…. more kuddos! Your kiddos are learning (although they may be unaware) problem solving, prioritizing, flexibility, using what you have, and delayed gratification. My kiddo is in college now, and in hindsight, these life skills he learned (we sold our ‘big house’, rented and renovated) have helped him in the long run. So take a breath, let the family use the for now set up, and share the next steps as they come; we love it. Blog post idea; Em’s pinboard of all the banquet/nook eye candy.

Mary
1 month ago
Reply to  Jen

OH I would LOVE to see the pinboard of banquette/nook inspiration photos!

🥰 Rusty
1 month ago

I love the daily reality of lofe in the Henderson’s house! No perfect anythinh.👍
The banquette will be great (super homework spot, too), but I think a rectangular table works hugrly better in a corner banquette, than an oval.
Loving the piece-by-piece reveals, rather than drowning in overehelming reveals.🙂

Shannon
1 month ago

I think no attached cushion on the banquette seat. This corner feels more a part of the living room than the kitchen, location-wise, and so should work visually as part of the LR. I would avoid anything that makes it feel to kitcheny, so that when not in use, it can read as more of game/card table that would naturally exist in a living room corner, rather than a kitchen table stuck in the living room. I get why a builtin or narrow bench is necessary for space reasons, but I’d choose one that feels more like furniture than a restaurant booth. Just my humble o!

1 month ago

Thank you so much, your article is excellent. Hard to pass such a piece of great information and very good content.

Marianne O'Malley
1 month ago

Agree that rectangular tables are better suited for banquets–especially when there are children involved! I would be tempted to keep the rectangular table you have currently and build your banquet around that. Then I would add two or three chairs in the style of your cool barstools.

Lindsay
1 month ago

I am mentally pulling the latest wood table over to be centered with the window, seems like it would make the whole corner feel less crowded against the wall and more intentional. I know this is not the permanent solution, but could be an interesting idea.

Jessie
1 month ago
Reply to  Lindsay

I agree. My eyes crave the symmetry there. I also would replace the light on the left side with a matching sconce. I see the desire for an oval table, but agree with others that it might be more comfortable to sit at a rectangular table. Looking forward to seeing what you land on in the end : )

Lucy
1 month ago

Have you considered that this little corner just isn’t meant to be an eating area? It just looks like a such a strange forgotten corner. It would be a perfect place for a piano!

Lane
1 month ago
Reply to  Lucy

I see a mini library nook there with a build in bench below the window. Considering that door is small, there’s space for a table.
It would be a pleasant space for homework, and a nice area to store some reference books too.

Lisa Carnochan
1 month ago
Reply to  Lane

Oh, I love it as a place to eat:)

Teresa
1 month ago

Looks like a good place to work on a puzzle too!

Sunny
1 month ago

Would you consider just trying out a dining table between the kitchen and the living room? Just skooch the vintage table and chairs over to that space and see how it looks with the kitchen done and living room furniture in place? Let us readers see how that would look.
I feel like the nook is too small and off center and when you get a banquette built with comfortable proportions, the doorway to the family room will be an obstacle in and out.
At the Mountain House the banquette has angled backs to make the seating comfortable…will you be able to do the same in this corner?

monica
1 month ago
Reply to  Sunny

Oh!!!!! I SO gree with this suggestion! Try removing the two white chairs – seems like there is an XS amout of seating in the living room area anyway. Try an area rug and that rectangular table to see how it looks! Free and will only take a few minutes!

KJ
1 month ago
Reply to  Sunny

I agree- I love the coziness of the nook as a dining area, but it looks out of proportion to the rest of the room. It’s too tight with the door, and the furniture will be small in scale in order to fit.

Stephanie
1 month ago

So, I’ve spent my recent days at an upholstery shop, doing banquettes like this day in and day out – here are my thoughts.

– Loose cushion/upholstered to wood: A loose cushion can be flipped/cleaned, but will also move around a bit when you squeeze in and out (even with velcro). Upholstered to wood has a tighter look and looks more high end/custom
– Back cushion: 100% do it. You can get away with not very deep (3/4″ plywood, 1″foam, plus batting for 2″ at the shallowest), but it’ll really make it look amazing, plus be way more comfy. If you have room for a few more inches, going 3-4″ deep will be super cozy.

Go for it!

Donna
1 month ago

Love a cozy corner! Have you considered using all benches? Especially on the outside, it can be pushed under the table when not in use to allow more space for pass through. Just one example:
comment image
Also, how about a pony wall between the window and outside door to parallel the family room wall, taking advantage of the length you have and allowing bench seating on all sides.
comment image

Clermont
1 month ago

I tried really hard to make a built-in banquette dining area work in my house where we had a similar size space – although ours was a little bit narrower. In the end I decided it wouldn’t fit and put in a long desk-height counter instead. The kids eat there but its also their art and homework space.

emily jane
1 month ago

In the moments between waking up and getting up to start my coffee today, I found myself pondering your dining nook.!? I was curious if and/or how it was getting used and for some reason, I was also worried you might not get your ‘banquette moment’..? How wonderful to receive immediate answers to my random but well-timed curiosity re: ‘what’s going on in the corners of homes of other people I may have only met once but still visit first thing every day…?’. If You’re interested, I have a similar corner with complicating architecture -in my case a low window- and this is where my banquette and I landed: Emily Jane Zarov (@ejzdancer) • Instagram photos and videos.

emily jane
1 month ago
Reply to  emily jane

PS. I looooove the addition of the vintage light fixture -old & beautiful with the versatility of adjustability + a little groovy, cool guy/gal personality for the win!

Lane
1 month ago
Reply to  emily jane

It looks so beautiful. Definitely the vibe I like

Sarah
1 month ago

Built-in bench recommendation… If the kids will be the ones primarily sitting on the bench, YES to a built in or hanging back cushion. For their current ages, they’ll need to sit more forward, and they (and you) will appreciate something that gives them a back rest. Just makes the “chair” more kid-size-friendly. We have a nook we Ikea-hacked a few years ago and that is the one thing I wish we’d done from the start! I think you will love the nook. It is perfect for homework, and side-by-side projects. I find myself working there often, too.

Dena
1 month ago

I am so happy you kept the nook!! I have one recommendation as a short person since this nook will be for the kids – since the banquette will be custom, think about putting a brass rail of some sort along the bottom that the kids can put their feet on while sitting there. It will be so much more comfortable for them! My vote is a full built in like the mountain house.

Ashley
1 month ago

What a fun area to have off of the kitchen! My eyes want you to center the table under the window and replace the articulating sconce with one that matches the other side of the window, in order to create symmetry. Also, we have a round table from PB that extends to an oval – and love it. We’re a family of 3 so don’t always need the extra length, but it’s great to have when we have bigger projects/dinner hangouts. Excited to see where this goes!

1 month ago
Reply to  Ashley

I agree. If the table in the later pictures is about where you want it on the wall side, then 60″ looks too short, off-center but more wasting space. Those teens are all gonna want to pile in somewhere in the near future. Always nice to have a space for a couple grandparents or friends to sit also. My old house had six spots and our new space has four for our family of four. We are constantly having to move to the dining room when my Mom or one of the kids friends stops over.

Dawn Neditch
1 month ago

Everything about this space seems off to me. I would not use this as a dining area (or homework spot, etc.), I would widen the opening to the tv room and put your dining table between the kitchen and the living room. The light needs to be used in a different room and a matching sconce needs to be installed to make the window more symmetrical.

priscilla
1 month ago

I feel your pain, Emily, and am sending you good vibes. I would wait on a “solution”. You can always paint or paper the drywall, just let the room settle before you spend a lot on something that hasn’t evolved.

Stacia
1 month ago

I like the location of the nook. I have a pass-through dining area and really do not like it at all. It becomes a catch-all drop zone instead of feeling like a purposeful eating space. Given that you aren’t all eating at the table daily/consistently, having it tucked away seems like a good use of that space – and not having to look at the kitchen mess while eating seem more relaxing to me. I personally love the look and idea of a built-in (and am always contemplating doing it in my kitchen) BUT I also know that I love to change up the look of my rooms from time to time and like the flexibility of furniture.

monica
1 month ago

Have you tried putting the short end of the rectangular table centered under the window? It might come out into the room a bit, but I think it would feel more open in the corner, than having the long side along the wall. Would work best if you removed the two white swivel chairs….

Megan
1 month ago

I love the farmhouse. I do wish you’d break up the living room into multiple seating areas a la some of the rooms shown here: https://laurelberninteriors.com/2022/02/02/shes-struggling-to-furnish-her-large-living-room/. Good luck!

monica
1 month ago
Reply to  Megan

Agree with this- I think 2 couches is overwhelming the space. I would remove the leather couch and put the two white chairs there, and leave space where the chairs were to then put the dining table in the area between the kitchen and the fireplace. Instead of centering the fireplace in the seating area, it could define one end of it. This is a quick $0 thing to try.

Lynly
1 month ago

I know this is going to go against the grain, but this entire corner is not great. It would be a much nicer line of sight for the family room doors to be double doors rather than the squeezed in pocket door. Do you need another dining area? Maybe place a beautiful desk or piano or something in that space. It’s just not good design and flow as it is right now, unfortunately.

Hana
1 month ago

I love the nook and honestly everything I’ve seen about this house so far! I love the bench that is braided. It adds so much texture and looks so beautiful. Could you do a modern shaker bench in either cotton strapping or leather with a back? You could do black and green tape to complement the sofa or just one color. I’m excited to see what the final version is.

CSW
1 month ago

What if (hear me out) the banquette just extends the length of the long wall instead of being L shaped?

Lori S H
1 month ago

I think the idea of this space is great, but it seems like you might be a bit squished. I’m team narrow rectangular table. Adjustable machine stools could easily slide under this narrow space. I do love the art and lamp.

pam
1 month ago

Completely off-topic but why isn’t the kitchen cabinet baseboard installed on that end cabinet? Seems like the whole point!

Kj
1 month ago
Reply to  pam

You are likely looking at “in process” pics. It is installed in later pics. You can just catch a glimpse of it above.

11A00999-B695-47EF-8F00-B73130C790EC.jpeg
pam
1 month ago
Reply to  Kj

thanks!

Hillary
1 month ago

I love the idea of that corner as a dining nook, but looking at the entire space I think I’ve identified one thing keeping it bland. There is no height disparity in any of the furniture, and it all comes to just about the same height as the wood panelling. It would help to delineate each space with pendant/chandelier/overhead lighting — one over the table, and another in the living space. Even if they aren’t used as primary lighting sources, they’ll mark each area off and give the eye somewhere higher to travel. The vintage piece near the dining table is gorgeous, but maybe would work better in a reading area. Pulling the table to center it under the window would go a long way towards making that area seem intentional. And how about more soft color — maybe pull in the mauve you love in the guest room, and some sage greens like the ones in the wallpaper samples.

Sarah L
1 month ago

This is such a perfect use of that space- I can totally see it being a puzzle/game table too. If you do a storage bench that would be a great place to store games and puzzles.

If you’re looking for custom, you should for sure check out the Nooks from https://www.northerlycustoms.com/ – they’re a PNW-based company (full disclosure founded by a college friend of mine!) and have combined an engineering background and a love of woodworking and sailing to building clever custom furniture out of CFC routed europly. They specialize in super exact custom measurements (see: engineering background) and could probably add some cutouts to the seat back or endcaps to reference the cutout detail in your kitchen cabinets (or other clever design details). I am still looking for the perfect application for their talents in my home but recommend them to everyone I know who has a very specific space to fill.

Matilda
1 month ago

We have 2 kids same age as yours and decided to go for a banquette. We love it and it’s being used for everything : puzzles, homeworks, breakfast, lunch, dinner, arts and craft, etc. It is the heart of the home where we all meet and share. And it gets cluttered and sometimes messy! From what I understand, this area gets used A LOT. How could you make it bigger?? It is hard to feel the space from only pictures. However, I wonder why it had been put into such a small corner. Perhaps you should reconsider your kitchen island all together and put a table and benches there instead. This is where you could all gather.

pam
1 month ago
Reply to  Matilda

Yes! I really feel a farmhouse table is the heart of a farmhouse. And some of my favorite English kitchens have tables in place of islands and it’s so charming. Plus, this island is not really that functional in terms of storage, seating, or appliances.

Addie
1 month ago

I’ve been curious about what is happening in this nook since it wasn’t included in either the living room or the kitchen updates. Love a banquette!

IreneL
1 month ago

I am not a professional but I have had a similar situation for a dining nook before. I love the banquette idea and everyone will enjoy using it for a variety of purposes. I am inclined to keep it as neat and visually simple and to use as much of the space as is possible. A rectangular table or alternatively an oblong shape – an “almost” rectangle but w rounded corners. If you have a table custom made you can create the exact width and length that will look and function best for you. You may not need a 36″ wide table but you may want it a bit longer than a standard size, etc. Here is an example of an oblong table at Ballard Designs – you can see the “usable” ends of an oblong shape:) https://www.ballarddesigns.com/vendela-extension-dining-table/furniture/dining-kitchen/dining-tables/600302? An attached (not hung) back cushion (one for each side of the L shape) is always tidy and IMHO looks the most high end. Alternatively if you want access to the pillows, 2 long and 2 short cushions for the seat and back using velcro will work but not as well. A pendant or small chandelier hung or swagged to hang in… Read more »

Ellen
1 month ago
Reply to  IreneL

I agree with Irene about the L banquette seats having attached back cushions (better look, smoother sliding) and as long/wide a rectangular table as looks appropriate. Someone posted a pic of a similar set up using a bench on the living room side, which I think would be brilliant in this case. Push it under and out of the way when not in use, and benches are really versatile, for kids especially – you can sit forwards, backwards and sideways too. 🙂 You could also upholster the bench top to coordinate with your built in benches if you wanted, or just keep them wooden and “slidey”. I agree with those who think the window wall needs symmetry with the lighting. The wall mounted swinging lamp is very cool (the shade is a great shape) and needs a perfect spot, but I don’t think this is it… in part because it doesn’t come out far enough to center on the table. Whoever is sitting on the living room side will have oddly angled light that creates shadows on whatever you are doing and will constantly make you want to push the table in to see better (ask me how I know).… Read more »

Jennyb
1 month ago

Hi, we have a built in banquette at our Tahoe cabin. I would highly recommend building one with a slightly angled back, SOOO much more comfortable when sitting there. I’ve sat on ones with the flat cushion on the wall and they are so uncomfortable. We happened to find one on second hand that an event space was getting rid of, and we reupholstered with an outdoor fabric, and it is so lovely having a comfy place to hang out while doing puzzles, eating, etc. Also, we have found that a rectangular table with a banquette is necessary. Otherwise the only people sitting at the right spot in relation to the table are right in the middle.

leah
1 month ago

I definitely think you should do a banquette for the cozy corner booth feel you mentioned. Seems very busy the way it is now.

Hilary
1 month ago

I grew up in New England in old farmhouses – in Massachusetts, which I consider to have definitive farmhouse style ☺️. In seeing the living room on this post, it made me reflect on the colors. My mother’s house – which is in a converted 1800s horse barn – has beautiful white walls. But LOTS of color in the furnishings. The light gray in particular is I think messing with your farmhouse vibe – I’ve never seen that kind of upholstery color in any farmhouse. I think the green sofa will make a huge difference! I love seeing the process and knowing that even you, with many years of experience and tremendous talent, sometimes benefit from a few iterations to make it perfect.

alex
1 month ago

this may be crazy but what about building a little half wall (32 inches) between the window and the doors that would create another “wall” for nook seating and maybe divide up that huge space in your living room. one side could be bench, the other bookshelf.

this would create a cool three sided bench a la reath design. then i’d drop a chandelier overhead for more coziness i.n this rather expansive space.

Monique Scronce
1 month ago

Hi! What color paint is on your walls? Thanks 🙂

Kj
1 month ago

It is Extra White by Sherwin Williams. More sources linked at the bottom of this post: https://stylebyemilyhenderson.com/blog/renovation-process-farmhouse-living-room

1 month ago

I never met a breakfast nook that I didn’t like. Can’t wait to see where this goes!

1 month ago

Looking beautiful ❤️👌

Smilla
1 month ago

Hi Emily, I’m commenting very late but I love the nook as a family dining space and for other table activities. I love that it’s tucked away. It is so important imo to create slightly separate cozier spaces within large open concept “great” rooms, for functionality and interest and warmth. Yes the nook seems small but that is part of its charm (and really it only seems small in comparison to the larger space as a whole – it’s exactly the right size for Emily’s family). Aside from family meals, it’s a spot where you can be apart from whatever is happening in the kitchen and in the main seating area by the fire, while still being a part of family life. I think it will be a much used, much loved space. (Also I like the offset window and the unmatched light fixtures, symmetry is overrated.) As far as the layout, I love an L-shaped banquette for the additional coziness but it’s true that a corner banquette can be awkward (I have one), and a straight built-in banquette on the long side would keep most of the benefits and eliminate the potential downside. An upholstered seat (and maybe back)… Read more »

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