Friday, April 24, 2020

Window Seats

Window Seat is game/reading nook in a casual dining area 
Reading nook window seat on edge of master bedroom
Window seats are special. They are carved from the edge of a room, either bumped in or bumped outward to create a special zone of space unique from the rest of of the room. The nook they create has a smaller scale where a single person can sit, read, think, or just gaze outdoors. It can feel like a room within a room, and can allow a room to feel more comfortable and be used for a greater variety of functions.

Long seat at Dining Room feature window

I love using window seats in my designs, and many clients ask for one. They are space saving and evoke a homey, hygge sense of comfort. I’ve placed them in bedrooms, as a cozy reading nook. I’ve used them in kitchens or casual eating areas as a built-in seat along one side of a table. (Used in this way, the room can be smaller than if chairs, which need space to slide backward, need to be placed all the way around a table.) I’ve used them in large rooms, like living or formal dining spaces, that may not be used daily or often, so that when one is home alone that large space can offer a personal-sized space in which to feel comfortable. I’ve used them in hallways or foyers as a way to make that space more than just a pass-thru area, by creating a place to sit and stay a while.

Built-in bench seat- or display shelf surface- in Farmhouse Kitchen
The design and construction methods for building a window seat can change to fit the space or use of the seat. Sometimes the seat flips up to access storage space inside, sometimes we have cubbies or drawers that are accessed from the front. We can plan for cushions, lighting, and an angled back for comfort. Bookshelves and woodwork and trim and soffits can all be custom designed so that the window seat is a real architectural focus in the space.

Cubbies below seat and bead board wainscotting accent woodwork
Of course to be called a window seat, it has to have a window- or three windows- which is what I tend to do, as you see in my projects featured here! Next blog post I’ll share photos from projects with built-in seats or benches that are not at a window, but are just as functional and beautiful and also add a certain desirable homey quality.

Farmhouse kitchen table designed with built-in bench seating

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