The Family Kitchen Booth

The Family Kitchen Booth

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Carrie McBride
Apr 12, 2010

A few weeks ago we were marveling at how relaxing a restaurant meal with our toddler had been when we'd been seated at a booth. He loved the independence and we loved that he couldn't easily escape. We wished we had a booth in our home kitchen - much like Fiona's (in fact we'd love her whole kitchen!)

Perhaps you saw the tour of Fiona's mid-century home in Australia on Apartment Therapy last month, but what you didn't see very close up was her family's wonderful kitchen booth which was still being completed. Not only is it great looking (especially after a paint job and terrific new textile to spiff it up), it's become home base for so many activities for Fiona, her husband Dean and their kids Ruby and Sachin. We couldn't resist hitting Fiona up for a few questions about the family kitchen booth.

The booth was there when you bought the house, yes? What did you do to fix or update it?

Yes you are correct, the booth was there in the original kitchen built in 1957. We were going to scrap it until we sat down and realised it had views of the city skyline and lights at night. With regard to construction we left the original frame intact and clad around it with new laminate board to match the kitchen. I had the cushions made by an upholsterer who makes caravan cushions (saved some money) but then spent that saving on the fabric, which is a commercial grade fabric used in restaurants and bars. It is a barrier/crypton fabric which can be removed for washing but also spot cleaned with fairly harsh cleaning products if required. The table top is a re-constituted quartz stone and matches the kitchen benchtops. The frame and legs were custom designed to suit and made in mild steel with a powdercoat finish.

Beyond eating, how does your family use the booth and what advantages do you see for it as opposed to just a table and chairs?

We're very glad we kept the booth as it is the most popular place to sit in the entire house. The kids are always plonking themselves down with all sorts of activities - drawing, painting, board games, craft projects, snacks etc and we as a family eat our breakfast and evening meal there each day. I can also be in the kitchen getting meals prepared and the kids are happy to be close by and I'm happy as they are not under my feet :) It's our place to congregate together. We like the fact (with pre-school 2 children) that we can barricade them in and keep them at the table - unlike dinner at a normal table where they are always climbing over the chair or leaving the table. We installed a power outlet at the table and my husband and myself also find ourselves working on our laptops there as it is such a nice sun-filled corner of the house.

Thank you Fiona! We're officially adding "kitchen booth" to our dream list for a house someday.

Readers, you can find Fiona at her blog fede+design+textiles and at her Etsy shop, fede, where she sells patchwork pillows and cloth baby and kids' toys.

(Images: Fiona Dyer)

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