Why Banquettes Are the Perfect Kid-Friendly and Storage-Happy Seating Solution

The banquette, made popular in the diner era, has made its way into the home kitchen for good reasons: It's space efficient, it's customizable, and for a family kitchen, it just might be the perfect solution to any issue a child can throw at it.

Grand Street Kitchen Remodel contemporary-kitchen

Banquettes are built-in seats tucked into a corner to save space in a kitchen or nook. They can be designed in an L shape or as parallel benches, and can be used with or without chairs. Whatever configuration you choose, figure on a minimum of 21 inches of seating and table width per person and 18 inches of seating depth.

Architect David Burton recommends allowing a minimum of 7 feet by 6 feet for a comfortable L-shape design with room for benches, a table and chairs. You’ll also need clearance around the chairs for a comfortable walkway.

Burton's firm designed the banquette shown here for a galley kitchen remodel. Built by Mueller Nicholls, it includes a built-in bookcase for homework, art supplies and cookbooks. Because it's located safely out of the cooking area, the banquette serves as a family gathering spot that extends well beyond mealtime. The base is made of standard cabinet drawers that match the kitchen’s alder cabinetry. The seat and back have the same wood in a complementary finish.

How to make it happen. The cost of building a banquette varies depending on many factors. It can be more expensive if it's a standalone job versus part of a larger remodel. Additional storage will add cost, as will higher-quality materials and finishes. Entrusting your design to an architect or interior designer will ensure that it's consistent with the overall look and feel of the space. Then turn it over to a trusted cabinetmaker for the best results.

The Ladue House eclectic-dining-room

This spacious banquette by Mitchell Wall Architecture & Design was created as part of a dining room. It's a helpful extension of the kitchen but has a more formal quality.

Its scale makes large family gatherings both manageable and comfortable. Adults get the chairs, while children easily hop onto kid-friendly benches.

Tip: Pillows upholstered in an inexpensive material can serve as boosters to bring smaller children up to a convenient height.

Galley Kitchen traditional-kitchen

 
GREEN with Envy: LEED Certified Whole House Renovation traditional-kitchen
 
Efficient Modern Kitchen contemporary-dining-room
 

Having easy access to plastic cups, napkins, placemats and silverware within banquette drawers, kids can be tasked with age-appropriate chores like setting the table and unloading the dishwasher. This banquette from Krieger + Associates Architects matches the rest of the kitchen’s pulls and Poggenpohl cabinetry.

See more of this project

 
Amoroso Design contemporary-dining-room
 
Though one can never keep a child bubble-wrap safe, a banquette set around a round or an oval table such as this Saarinen-style one can help mitigate those horrifying corner-to-forehead experiences.
 
Savvy Interiors traditional-dining-room
 

Adding a tall, cushioned back akin to the one on this banquette from Savvy Interiors can help keep little bouncers from hitting their heads. The height of the bench's back and a sophisticated pattern on the upholstery add drama and glamour.

Tell us: Is a banquette the perfect seating solution in your house? We'd love to see your photo in the Comments section below.

Photos: Browse more banquette designs

 
 

By: (Houzz)

 

Photo Credit:

The Ladue House, original photo on Houzz

 

Related Links:

More Kitchen Storage Solutions Fit for Family Life

Choose Outdoor Fabrics for a Durable, Stain-Proof Solution

Family-Friendly Kitchen Decorating Ideas

Picture of Houzz

Author: Houzz

Houzz is the leading platform for home remodeling and design, providing people with everything they need to improve their homes from start to finish. From decorating a room to building a custom home, Houzz connects millions of homeowners, home design enthusiasts and home improvement professionals across the country and around the world.

Top Posts

5 Ways to Stop the 5am Wake-Ups
Kids With Special Interests
What To Do With All Those Halloween Costumes
The Funniest Things Your Kids Say
5 Reasons to Love Costco
How to talk to preschoolers (and get what you want)
What Teachers Want Parents to Know About the Home and School Relationship
DIY: Pull-Up Bars
Surprising Post-Halloween Dental Care Tips
My Top 10 Educational TV Shows for Kids

Archives