I am a huge fan of window seats and have designed dozens of them for my clients. The two questions that my clients often ask are; how will it be designed and where will it go? The basic design of any window seat looks similar to this one pictured above. The simplest, most cost effective way is to construct a box, add a door and hinges to the top, add panels to the front, trim and base molding. Design details to address (1) The face; recessed or raised panels, bead board, open shelves, doors or drawers? (2) How will you access the storage inside; a door on top of the seat or from the front which we just touched on. (3) The base; to the floor or a toe kick (open space)? (4) The top; will it have a cushion, a decorative slab of wood on top and will it need to open?
There are the logical places to add window seats such as nooks, dormer windows and entryways but I also have clients that have me create areas that window seats can go. You would be surprised how a random corner can become the perfect place for an L-shape window seat or how dead space in a hallway like below can become a cozy place to read. I just love window seats in kitchens; they can be created by running the cabinets up to each side of the window and then placing the window seat in between the cabinets or placed in a natural bump out like the above kitchen.
Entryways and mud-rooms are aesthetic as well as functional places for window seats. If the budget allows I prefer accessing storage from the front; if shoes, toys or taller items are being stored I suggest doors. Drawers work well for clothing, file cabinets and toys. Open shelves are nice for books, baskets and shoes if you don’t mind seeing them.
A corner can be a lovely place for a window seat. The question that often arises is; what about that vent I am covering? Above is a solution, run the vent under the seat and design it into the base. Below, bedrooms are a fabulous places to add a window seat, providing a place to sit as well as an inviting design element. I hope you have enjoyed this glimpse into the world of window seats and remember you can always email me questions about them in Just Ask.