Vision for Dining Room Built-Ins {Connection, Charm & Function}

Vision for Dining Room Built-Ins {Connection, Charm & Function}Southern Living Idea House with Bunny Williams

Now that our side yard is underway (insert big squeal of JOY!! I will admit, I look at it dozens of times a day!), I’m starting to connect the spaces in my dream planning. Meaning, I would love to have a home that flows well from room to room, as well as from inside to outside whenever possible. Even when you don’t have the ideal setup (whatever that might be in your own  mind), it’s good to make sense of your design decisions, making the very best of what you have to work with.

Vision for Dining Room Built-Ins {Connection, Charm & Function}Andrew Howard Interior Design

If we proceed with the kitchen being relocated to the dining room (which is the winning idea at this point, but you know, minds can change!) and if the new dining area is relocated to the existing kitchen (with a banquette along one wall) we will still have a single door out to the porch, which will lead to our small side yard. That layout is already existing, but it wasn’t used as effectively as it could have been and it was lacking in charm. I think using the space you have more effectively and simply adding charm to it is so much fun. Oftentimes being budget-minded makes you think more creatively about what you have, which I really love.

The door (which will be a Dutch door, as I’ve said probably a trillion times already, hahah, EXCITED MUCH?) will remain the size it is, no installing big grand double doors out to a glorious backyard, but it’s a door that can be made more charming! And for that, I say, YAY! And now that the side yard is getting a makeover, that door is going to lead to a very cute outdoor space for our BBQ grill and seating, so I’m THRILLED.

Vision for Dining Room Built-Ins {Connection, Charm & Function}Heidi Piron Design & Cabinetry

It is so nice to have a starting point to work with that we know we will love (as it is our first project). That space is inspiring me to connect the dots between the outside, that dream-to-come-true Dutch door and into the rest of the house.

So as you enter that Dutch door (say it with me again now, DUTCH DOOR!), you’ll come into a room that right now I’m dreaming of being a cross between the dining room (located on the far side of the kitchen) and a mudroom type entrance since it’s a door we might even begin to use more than our front door.

Yeah, let me just pause and say it would be so cool if it was able to be only one of those rooms, but in a relatively smallish one level home with a basement (our main floor includes the kitchen and dining room, living room, three bedrooms and a bathroom and it is about 1500 square feet, not including the basement which of course is a luxury we are thrilled to have) you definitely make compromises.

No complaints from me though, I love the puzzle of making the most of our space.

Vision for Dining Room Built-Ins {Connection, Charm & Function}

At the far wall, next to the dream Dutch door, is this wall of cabinets (and the current location of the refrigerator). Great storage and yet, room for improvement! That’s good.

The dream Dutch door will be at the far side of the dream banquette dining table, so I imagine this wall as useful storage space for the kitchen and dining room. We could possibly even just refurbish the cabinetry that is already here and transform this wall into a really charming dining and kitchen storage space, thus the inspiration photos in today’s post.

Vision for Dining Room Built-Ins {Connection, Charm & Function}

You can see the hall that is presently through the door to the right of the fridge, above. The current basement stair wall could be opened up to make the hallway feel more spacious, and the existing cabinet could be snazzed up a bit to look more like a butler’s pantry, even though it is located in the hall, because it would be a convenient location for overflow platters and dishes. A little reimagining and it will be a cute cabinet!

If you keep going down that hall, you’ll loop around to the right and end up in the new kitchen so it’s a great circular floor plan.

I hope you enjoy today’s inspiration for charming dining room built-ins and butler pantry style cabinets! It’s fun to share this journey with you all.

Vision for Dining Room Built-Ins {Connection, Charm & Function}Millhaven Homes

Vision for Dining Room Built-Ins {Connection, Charm & Function}
Jack Bilt Homes

Vision for Dining Room Built-Ins {Connection, Charm & Function}Jill Hinson – Forever Cottage

Vision for Dining Room Built-Ins {Connection, Charm & Function}
Eleven Gables

My Kitchen Remodel: Visualizing a New Dining Space

My Kitchen Remodel: Visualizing a New Dining SpaceBanquette inspiration photo: BHG

Happy Monday! Hope you all had a great weekend! Last week I shared a new idea for our kitchen that I’m pretty intrigued with! If you missed the post, you can find the inspiration photos and thoughts here.

My Kitchen Remodel: Visualizing a New Dining Space

Our current kitchen is tucked into the small back corner of the house, with the sink below a small window overlooking our neighbor’s new house and our side-yard, which is currently getting a fun makeover of its own (see that project here).

My Kitchen Remodel: Visualizing a New Dining Space

My plan is for this door to become a Dutch Door, no matter what. I’m going to try to make it happen soon, in conjunction with our side-yard makeover! Right now I’m on the hunt for the right door and getting the contractor on board with my visions :). You can find some inspiration photos for what I envision, here.

My Kitchen Remodel: Visualizing a New Dining Space

As I mentioned in my last post about the kitchen, right now I’m picturing moving the kitchen to the dining room so the sink can be oriented to face the backyard to take advantage of the view. The stove and fridge could be on the opposite wall (behind that wall is our basement staircase, so moving that wall would create more complications).

My Kitchen Remodel: Visualizing a New Dining Space

One possibility would be to open up the wall between the current kitchen and the dining room to create more flow between those two spaces. We could add the arch we originally envisioned (remember our painter’s tape archway?) for the dining room, or for a more wide open layout, we could actually take the entire wall out.

My Kitchen Remodel: Visualizing a New Dining Space

If the kitchen was going to remain where it is, that wall was needed for the stove so removing it wasn’t ideal, but if we move the stove to the dining room, that in-between wall could be opened up to make the two rooms feel more like one space (although the kitchen actually extends beyond that wall towards our fridge and the outside door, I’ll have to draw out the room floor plan so you can visualize better).

There are several possible dining room options, including the possibility of creating one bigger eat-in kitchen with the outer perimeter of the space lined with counters and the dining table across from the sink.

There are definitely pros and cons to that plan (as there is for every configuration so far, but that’s often how it goes unless you are going to rip the roof off and expand the house! It seems you always have to get creative with the space available to you!). I can share inspiration photos and do a floor plan for that full ‘eat in kitchen’ soon so you can see how that could look.

My Kitchen Remodel: Visualizing a New Dining Space

But the idea I thought I’d show today is the possibility of creating a dining banquette (one way or another I feel like I’m determined to find a space for a banquette!) right in this corner.

It would still essentially be an “eat-in kitchen” but the table could be nestled comfortably into one corner of the room, rather than out in the open workspace (with a bench along the wall under the corner window and around where the sink and dishwasher currently are). Paired with a narrow movable farm table and chairs, I think it would be very a intimate and inviting space without feeling too crowded or confining.

My Kitchen Remodel: Visualizing a New Dining SpaceBanquette inspiration photo: Amber Interiors via My Domaine photography by Tessa Neustadt

Now, I realize with a corner banquette that you will have a couple of seats in the middle that require you to scoot to get in and out, but the view from the bench would be worth it. You could see right out the back window to the view in the day or into the new kitchen and through to the living space. Plus, banquettes are just so charming and space saving, that it would be worth the extra scoot. If you didn’t want to scoot or couldn’t scoot, there would be chairs! Our bench wouldn’t be that long anyway, so I’m not really worried about it. There wouldn’t be enough room for a full table with chairs all around it, anyway, so the built in seating would be the best solution in this small-space situation.

We would have to give up a formal separate dining room but we would be gaining a bigger remodeled kitchen with a view. I can live with that! I think the updates we would make would appeal to future buyers, too. The more casual and open but very charming dining space would be great for the way many people live and entertain these days. And if we (or future owners) wanted a separate formal dining room down the road, a nearby bedroom could be easily converted to a dining room.

My Kitchen Remodel: Visualizing a New Dining Space

We could add built-in dish storage cabinets and even a serving buffet on the back wall of the existing kitchen, where the fridge is currently located, to give it a charming dining room vibe. With the stove wall removed on the right of this photo above, there would be room to pass through the kitchen out to the Dutch door as well as to get around the table even if people were sitting there.

There is also another entrance to this space (to the right of the existing fridge) from the hallway so guests could enter and exit the dining area without going through the kitchen! It’s nice to have a floor plan that flows well so you don’t have bottlenecks.

So, that’s pretty much what I’m thinking, at least for the moment! You never know what idea might pop into my head next (I can’t help it!!), but so far this is the idea we feel the most comfortable with and seems to make the most sense both financially and space-wise. Now that we’ve lived here for a few months, I really feel like I’m becoming more certain of what works and doesn’t work and what would be the best improvements for this house.

My Kitchen Remodel: Visualizing a New Dining Space

I love the idea of making the most of our water, mountain, sky and sunset views, so doing dishes while looking outside seems pretty much like a dream to me!

My Kitchen Remodel: Visualizing a New Dining Space

We love the generous size of our current living room so we don’t want to cut it up to expand the kitchen or dining room into that space at all. We definitely have some plans to update that room so it will all feel cohesive, though.

My Kitchen Remodel: Visualizing a New Dining Space
Dining nook inspiration via BHG

It’s fun to reimagine a space, isn’t it?

More inspiration: My Lifelong Dream of a Banquette

My Kitchen Remodel: Visualizing a New Dining Space
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