Mod seating and fairy‐tale pendant light. Sleek smooth mod plastic chairs create a dynamic counterpoint to an intricate whimsical pendant light here. Sticking with white for the chairs and light fixture keeps this kitchen (with its pink cabinets) from veering into too‐sweet territory.
Filament chandelier. Filament bulbs have risen in popularity with good reason – they exude charm and cast a beautifully warm glow. Single filament bulbs are typically available only in 40 to 60 watts but using a chandelier with many exposed filament bulbs is a wonderful way to get all the charm and the light you need.
Dramatic flair. In an all‐white kitchen introduce color and texture with bold and cheerfully patterned upholstery. Brighten up the nook with glass pendants a colorful table setting and freshly picked flowers. Note how the pullout drawers under the benches provide storage – a perfect place in which to keep all your board card and trivia games for after‐dinner fun.
Café table and invisible chairs. This itty‐bitty seating area proves that even truly tiny spaces don't need to sacrifice style. Seek out the smallest sleekest café table you can find and place a pair of clear chairs (made from acrylic or Lucite) around it. Style it up between meals with a cute fruit bowl.
Diner table and cool wallpaper. To get this quirky charming look tuck a classic diner‐style table up to a corner banquette backed with a wall covered in fresh modern wallpaper. The combination of a corner banquette (to maximize seating) and printed wallpaper (to add depth) is great for small spaces.
Go for the tried and true: a weathered wood table. A secondhand wood table with a farmhouse or industrial heritage has already passed the test of time. Any scratches and nicks in the tabletop surface have mellowed into design details becoming features to admire. If you accidentally add a few more to it it won't matter. For this reason these tables are great for families with children – you never have to worry about whether your brood is unwittingly or even intentionally marking the table. The damage if minor will only become part of the beauty of the piece. That said it's worth protecting your table with a hard wax polish which should be applied about twice a year.
Budget box. Make the most of a breakfast nook by installing a complete compartment that keeps diners out of the way of the cooking action in the kitchen. Additionally those on a budget will benefit from copying the style of the boxed‐in nook pictured here. Inexpensive wood can be painted white to make the area bright. To add value choose a more expensive tabletop and treat it with a good sealant oil to keep it looking good with use.
Corner nook. Custom woodwork and banquette seating can create a sophisticated corner nook in the kitchen. In this L‐shaped arrangement the wood grain of the built‐in banquette is matched to the kitchen countertops and complemented by a white table and cabinets. To add color and interest it has been decorated with a variety of flea market finds.