Whether built-in or bench-side, we always gravitate to the cushy side of the table. Forever sought-after in casual dining spaces thanks to its versatile, sociable design, we turn to two of our most congenial design friends for their expert musings on why banquette seating works so well. On the left: Broadway-star-turned-interior-designer Adam Hunter
, who knows how to build a show-stopping room without sacrificing function. On the right: Molly Luetkemeyer of M.Design Interiors
, famous for creating homes brimming with charm perfect for day-to-day living. Take a seat and learn from the experts (cue the awkward who-gets-the-good-seat moment).
|The banquette allows for ample seating without cramming chairs into a tight space. They're great for small spaces.
||You can shove in half of the 1st grade birthday party or have a casual, roomy adult meal around the table.
|Install one in a long narrow room or an awkward corner. They just bring a space together.
||Create a flip-top for deep storage of items you don't use frequently, or build in drawers for more accessible storage.
|Banquettes economize the space, but force an intimate setting...
||I recently put a banquette in a game room, it offers seating for two or more when the game is in play, but can become a cozy spot to read afterwards.
|Consider a special tufting detail like square buttons and always add some bold throw pillows.
||Layer with cushions and pillows, it's always more comfortable than a series of traditional dining chairs.
Photographs: 1. Room by Molly Luetkemeyer/photographed by Jonn Coolidge, 2. Room by Adam Hunter/photographed by Douglas Burke, 3. Room by Molly Luetkemeyer/photographed by Jonn Coolidge, 4. Lonny Magazine, 5.Room by Alexandra & Eliot Angle Photograph Courtesy of Apartment Therapy, Room by Simo Design 6. Room by Estee Stanley, 7. Room by Gilles et Boissier, 8. Room by Toronto Interior Design Group Photograph Courtesy of Decor Pad, Courtesy of Provincial Kitchens, 9. Courtesy of Benjamin Moore, 10. Better Homes & Gardens, Apartment Therapy, 11. Better Homes & Gardens Portraits: Courtesy of Adam Hunter, Courtesy of Molly Luetkemeyer
|(Remember) You're typically sliding in...and no one ones to slide over grippy fabric or vinyl.
||Pattern is great looking and helpful in hiding spills if the banquette is in a heavily trafficked area.