All rights reserved. Bulkheads over window seats are often arched for a secluded feel, but they can also run straight across from one side of an alcove to the other. Fake a seat. Minimum seating width (one side of the bench to the other) should at least 32 inches, which will allow one person to sit and face forward. Screw cabinets together through their sides and set on 2x4 framing to support and raise them to seat height. Make up the difference by furring out and supporting the cabinets from behind with doubled-up 24 cleats secured to wall studs. It can be deeper if space allows. A 3-foot-long DIY window seat costs as little as $100 for one with open storage underneath or $350 for one made with stock cabinets. Building the window seat yourself will save you a substantially. The popularity of the window seat is nothing new. Gain extra accommodations for overnight guests with a window seat sized for a standard twin mattress (39 by 75 inches). Pro Advice: "In a kitchen or a family room, cover the window-seat cushion with outdoor fabric. An enclosed window seat can be made by adding wood paneling to the front and any exposed sides of a shelf-style seat (shown on the banquette at right) or by cladding it with drywall to create a seamless surface with the surrounding walls. Trademark trim in Craftsman bungalows and Victorian gingerbread cottages, window-seat brackets can echo existing ones. This option, which you can make yourself or hire out, is great in utilitarian spaces such as mudrooms, entryways, or even a laundry area. A window seat that is 60 inches wide or more will offer additional seating. Use these measurements to ensure a comfy seat. It all comes down to carpentry. Fasten the underside of the shelf to 24 cleats screwed to wall studs along the back and side walls. Use 1x4 baseboards to hide the framing, and top cabinets with ¾-inch plywood trimmed with edge molding to create the seat. When designing your window seat, incorporate details that make it feel warm and welcoming. Take advantage of a nook created by existing his-and-hers closets to add a sunny seat. Nestled against the glass, bordered on both sides by narrow walls, and amply supplied with cushions and pillows, these benches offer comfort and relaxation while providing a view to the outside world. It could also create a safety issue if the person on the seat leans on the window. The most comfortable height for a window seat (with cushion on) is between 16 and 21 inches. Enhance the appeal of the window seat with a bulkhead—a dropped (lower) area of the ceiling. Keep reading to learn how to get rid of gnats and how to prevent future infestations. The depth of the seat (front to back) should be at least 16 inches for comfortable forward-facing sitting. And they provide extra storage when fitted with drawers, cabinets, or a simply hinged bench top. At 39 inches deep, built-in daybeds serve as side-sitting window seats, and they can double as an extra bed for guests, but the extra depth makes forward-facing sitting difficult unless you add extra cushions to the back of the seat. When it comes to coziness, nothing compares to a window seat. Be sure to fully support the seat from below and behind. Note: Most stock wall cabinets are 12 inches deep, less than the suggested 16 to 20 inches for comfort. Get the latest This Old House news, trusted tips, tricks, and DIY Smarts projects from our experts–straight to your inbox. There are some basic guidelines you should follow with respect to window seat dimensions. If the window seat is used for sleeping, consider installing drapes in front of the seat to conceal the entire alcove, creating a room within a room. Suggesting cozy cottage style and casual gathering spots, beadboard adds instant charm, whether used as cladding for the window-seat base, the backrest area, or both, as shown here. A window seat like this can also double up as great storage for those kitchen items that are rarely used. We have a step-by-step tutorial right here to help you along. They also have a place in every room, whether as a banquette in the kitchen, a boot bench in an entry, or a hideaway for reading a book in the den, and can be trimmed to match existing moldings. A seat or a long bench can add seating in a family dining space or in a living room or den for large gatherings. This chair height makes it ideal for dining when a table is pulled up. If it’s any higher, the bench will show through the window from outside. Cabinets typically rest on 24 framing, but some stock and semi-custom models come with legs or a pedestal with an integral toekick. When hiding a radiator in a window seat, sheathe the face with lattice panels to let heat escape. Tuck them into the toekick or side walls. Handy homeowners can use stock cabinets or construct a sturdy open or enclosed bench out of lumber and plywood. Most local building codes require electrical wiring to be done by a licensed electrician. The wider the shelf the better, but even a narrow, between-the-studs recess gives you a lot of storage. Consider calling in the pros for an exact match to a room's existing millwork or a challenging configuration, such as a curved bay window. Install built-in bookcases and lighting to mimic the usual nightstand elements, or make the window-seat platform area longer than the mattress itself to give you extra surface area for placing books and other objects. Install a deep windowsill. Here, a cubby keeps trip hazards safely stowed and drawers help organize small items, such as dog leashes and toys. Not just for curling up with a paperback anymore, window seats increasingly are places where people plug in a laptop. Don’t skimp on the stuffing. For a bay window without right angles, that means following the curve. Use filler strips to bridge gaps in front, and extra doors as end panels. The trick is getting the measurements right. A large window seat can serve as a daybed. Complex arrangements, such as curved bays or windows with radiators tucked beneath, call for clever solutions. A gnat infestation is a common occurrence for many homeowners. Modular units with doors or drawers offer a pre-made base. Use dimmers for energy-efficiency and to create a soothing space for napping. The price you’ll pay for a new window seat varies widely, based on size, material, and whether you build it yourself or hire a carpenter. This seat's creamy white paint and chunky baseboards complement the window's raised-panel casing. Standard shelf depth is 12 or 16 inches; for comfort, the window seat should stand proud, for a total depth of about 18 inches. Armed with the right tools and techniques, you can easily unplug stopped-up drains without having to call in a pro. A sill that’s eight to 10 inches wide offers additional room for books, potted plants, or vases. Backrest: 10 to 20 inches high to lean, either below the window or against a side wall. Outlets also let you easily charge an e-reader or a tablet without leaving your cozy perch. Copyright © 2020 This Old House Ventures, LLC. Our Nest vs. Ring will help you decide which is right for you and your home. Standard with stock and custom cabinets, doors offer tidy, enclosed storage. Bolster rolls are great additions to the sides. 16 to 20 inches to sit facing forward with feet on the floor, 10 to 20 inches high to lean, either below the window or against a side wall, Minimum of 30 inches to face forward, 50 inches to sit sideways with legs extended. Window-Seat Dimensions Illustration by Gregory Nemec. Those built into homes today are perhaps even more appealing than their predecessors, because they’re often set into recessed alcoves, bringing a greater sense of privacy and security.
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