Furniture Guides

How to Style Your Breakfast Nook to Start Your Day Off Right

While a dining room is meant to be larger and more formal, a breakfast nook is a perfect spot to create coziness. By adding the right decorative elements, you'll look forward to sliding into your nook and getting your day off to a good start.

The key to your breakfast nook is to make it inviting. Since it is such a small space, this means avoiding too much clutter and only adding the things that bring you joy. When you see it first thing in the morning, you'll not only want to linger there, but it will help you get your day started on the right foot.

Designing this area should be fun and inspiring. You have several options for styling your nook, from adding the right-sized breakfast nook dining setto balancing natural and artificial light.

Enjoy Natural Lighting

Nothing compares to natural light streaming into your nook from clean windows. As the sun rises, you can enjoy sitting in your breakfast nook admiring the coming day, or glance at a newspaper, magazine, or do your morning reading, whatever that may be for you. Be sure to position your table and seats in a way to benefit from this natural light.

Consider Cozy Window Treatments

Consider adding a touch of romance or fun to your nook by adding sheer curtains tied back, or a cute valance, or a roll-up shade. These can be switched seasonally to create a fresh look or feel to your space any time you choose.

Find the Right Breakfast Nook Dining Set

One of the more functional design elements to concentrate on is choosing the right breakfast nook dining set for the space. Before choosing a design, take measurements of the space available to determine the nook's maximum dimension. Consider whether you will use benches only or add a few chairs to add more character. Think about the layout and if a square or round table will fit best.

Coastal Dining Room Design
Coastal Dining Room Design

A pedestal table is often an excellent choice as it makes it easier to slip a bench seat or chairs underneath and leaves open space where normally the table legs would be. You can always combine unique pieces or purchase a set.

You also want to consider the height of your seating. With bare benches and chairs, you will most likely be adding cushions of a certain thickness, so keep this thickness in mind as you are choosing how high you want your furniture to sit. Also, consider your tabletop's height relative to the chair's seat height; you don't want it sitting too low or too high.

Breakfast Nook With View
Mid Century Modern Dining Room Design
Farmhouse Dining Room Design

Add Comfortable Cushions

To create a truly cozy space, you want to ensure you include comfortable cushions to sit on, whether you are there for just one cup of coffee or all morning. These need to be thicker than average chair pads, but not so thick that when you sit down, you tower over your table.

Also, be sure these cushions stay in place as you move around. Ways to accomplish this include purchasing seating with a built-in lip or inset, adding Velcro attachments, or use clips or ties to attach the cushions to the bench.

Another factor to consider is the cushion material. Make sure it is durable so you won't have to worry about spills or tears. Indoor/outdoor fabric is one solution, while microfiber or polyester offers you an array of patterns and colors and often comes with a waterproof or stain-resistant coating. Alternatively, use covers that can be removed and machine-washed occasionally.

Install a Cozy Light Fixture

Scandinavian Style
Scandinavian Style

Even if you prefer the natural light streaming in on sunny mornings, consider making the space extra cozy with a unique light fixture hanging down in the center or attached to a side wall. You'll appreciate these on those overcast mornings.

Ideas include a small chandelier or a nook pendant light. Ensure you hang it at the right height for your space and prevent it from obstructing other views. The ideal hanging height is approximately 30" from the tabletop. However, if you choose an oversized fixture, you may need to hang it several inches higher.

Add Color or Stay Neutral

You always have the choice to add color to your breakfast nook or leave it a natural, soothing neutral. For color, add pillows and throws in solids or patterns, or a combination of these. Try adding yellow ones to remind you of the rising sun. The colors green and blue are often considered to help with tranquility, while orange is considered a high energy hue, ideal for getting your day started.

Whichever color scheme you choose, make sure it fits your personality and puts a smile on your face when you first see it every morning to start your day off right.

Small Dining Room
Small Dining Room

Dress up the Floor

Often we forget what's underneath our feet. Adding a stylish rug to your nook can add an extra design element and keep your feet warmer. It also helps protect your flooring from scratches and scuff marks.

Opt for a low-pile rug to prevent food particles from getting trapped and leading to mold and odors.

Dining Room Design
Dining Room Design

Add a Plant or Fresh Flowers

Bring a little outdoor life into your breakfast nook area. Place your favorite fresh flowers in a vase in the center of the table. Add your favorite potted plants to side shelves, or hang a basket with trailing ivy in one corner. However, be aware that certain plants and flowers are toxic to pets, so plan accordingly if you have one or more curious cats or dogs in the house.

The Takeaway

There are no hard and fast rules on how much to add to your breakfast nook. If you prefer simple and uncluttered, just add the elements that are most calming to you. If you want to jazz it up with color and whimsical items, go for it.

By including the basics of the right amount of natural and artificial light, comfortable seating, and a perfectly fitting breakfast nook dining set, you will already have a cozy space to start your day off right. Adding a few more design elements to make it uniquely yours can even take it even a step further.

Whether you select one or all these tips for creating a cozy breakfast nook, you will create the perfect space for your needs.

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