Architectural Home Designs & Decorating Ideas

Kitchen Banquette Seating with Storage

4 minute read

Small kitchens can present a challenge when it comes to having enough seating for family meals or entertaining guests. The layout constraints of a compact footprint make it tricky to fit a full-sized dining table and chairs. However, banquette seating offers a space-saving solution that can maximize every precious inch.

With their efficient use of space, integrated storage, and cozy custom feel, banquettes are a perfect multifunctional addition for tiny kitchens and dining areas. Read on to explore the benefits of banquette seating and discover smart ideas to incorporate this useful feature into your home.

Maximize Your Square Footage with Corner Banquettes

For the savviest use of space, consider installing a corner banquette in your kitchen or dining nook. Tucked neatly into the corner, a banquette with an L-shaped or U-shaped design takes advantage of wasted space to provide bench seating for 3-4 people.

Unlike bulky freestanding tables and chairs, banquettes keep traffic flow open. Sitting flush against the walls, they don’t obstruct the room. Corner banquettes also allow for easy access in and out compared to booths. You won’t have to squeeze past other diners to get to the aisle.

Choose from Straight, Modular or Curved Styles

kitchen banquette seating with storage

In addition to corner nook placement, banquettes can be installed in other configurations. A straight banquette is ideal for laying flat against any wall. Placed along the entirety of a breakfast nook, for example, a straight banquette can offer continuous seating for up to six.

Freestanding modular banquettes provide versatile seating that can be rearranged as needed. Sectionals make it easy to reconfigure your layout down the road. These adaptable styles don’t require permanent installation into your wall studs.

For a unique look, consider integrating a curved banquette into your space. Flowing lines add flair while still fitting snugly into corners. A rounded shape lends a modern, streamlined aesthetic to your kitchen.

Gain Intimacy and Privacy with High-Backed Booths

Another banquette option is the classic diner-style booth. With high seat backs and sides that fully or partially enclose the space, boothscreate an intimate, private dining experience. The barriers help contain noise and allow for quiet conversation even in an active kitchen.

Better suited for small groups of 2-4, booths require more square footage than basic benches. However, the cozy environment can be perfect for a small breakfast nook or a niche dining zone in an open floor plan.

Maximize Seating and Storage with Smart Design

One of the most advantageous features of a banquette is that it combines seating and storage. But to make the most of this versatility, the design requires some strategic planning.

When laying out your banquette, carefully measure the space and existing traffic flow. Allow for proper clearance from islands, appliances, and doorways. Also factor in banquette depth. The cushions must have enough room for comfortable sitting and leg room.

Incorporate electrical outlets and lighting to make your banquette seating functional. Under-bench lighting or sconces mounted on the back panel illuminate the space beautifully. Outlets integrated into the sides or back let you plug in lamps and devices.

Maximize Hidden Storage Space

Most banquettes conceal ample storage in their base. To make use of all that potential, include compartments like drawers, shelves, and cubbies built right into the design.

Deep drawers are perfect for stowing table linens, serving platters, and kitchen gadgets conveniently close at hand. Open shelves or enclosed cabinets allow you to neatly organize and display cooking items. Lift-up bench tops offer additional hidden storage as well.

Select Stylish, Durable Upholstery Fabrics

Upholstery plays a key role in both the function and look of your banquette. For seats that must withstand daily use, durable, easy-care fabrics are essential. Tightly woven polyester or poly-blend fabrics resist stains, wear and abrasion.

Leather or vinyl are also practical options, but can be hot for lengthy sitting. If opting for delicate upholstery like linen or velvet, apply a protective coating to repel spills and dirt. Combining contrasting materials and piping adds stylish flair.

Build Custom Banquette Seating on a Budget

One of the appeals of banquettes is that they can be constructed relatively affordably as DIY projects. With basic carpentry skills and a weekend of work, you can create a customized look without the designer price tag.

The simplest route is using stock kitchen cabinets for the base. Available in big box stores, these units offer durable construction and finished sides if left exposed. For the seat and back platform, plywood cut to size works well.

If installing your banquette fully into studs, take time to measure and anchor securely. For a built-in look, add trim molding around the top and bottom edges. Not feeling that hands-on? Assembly services can help install a pre-fab banquette kit purchased online.

When planned thoughtfully, banquette seating can transform a cramped kitchen into a comfortable, effortlessly chic dining space. Maximize your square footage with corner nooks, straight or modular benches.

Strategize seating capacity and storage needs. Choose cushions and fabrics suited for heavy use. Integrate lighting and electrical. And customize with budget-friendly DIY construction for a bespoke built-in look.

Banquettes are endlessly adaptable to your family’s lifestyle. By combining form and function, banquette seating provides the perfect small space solution to dine and entertain in style.