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Posts Tagged ‘Breakfast nook’

Breakfast Nooks: Darn Cute

June 25th, 2011 Sears Homes 2 comments

Built-in breakfast nooks became wildly popular in the early 1920s and especially so in kit homes. After the grand Victorian home fell from favor, the bungalow craze took over and suddenly The Little House was the best house to have.

Bungalow builders and architects dealt with small houses by making the best use of small spaces, such as a built-in table and matching benches for the morning meal. It was a wonderful idea, and also saved the housewife some work. It was easier to set up and clean off a small table in the kitchen than dealing with the big fancy wooden table in the dining room.

This is the third of three posts on breakfast nooks at this site. Read more about breakfast nooks (and see many more photos) here and here.

Below are pictures from Sears and Montgomery Ward catalogs, showing the breakfast nook (with prices) of the early 1920s.

Brea

The 1921 Sears Building Materials catalog shows two breakfast nooks.

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"The Dawn" has a fold-away table.

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When the sun comes out, the table automatically drops down into place! Awesome!

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The Dawn, although it lacks the automatic features of The Sunrise is a much nicer looking table.

"The Dawn" is 2'6" wide and 4' long. Pretty small, but the price is right.

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The Sunrise

The Sunrise is only $32.90. I'll take two!

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awe

"The Sunrise" lacks the automatic features of "The Dawn," but it is a much nicer looking table, and quite a bit larger, too.

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nooks

Cover of the 1932 Montgomery Ward Building Material catalog, which featured breakfast nooks.

cover

A close-up of the built-in breakfast nook featured on the cover of the hardware catalog.

cover nook

The "cozy corner dinette" sold for a mere $14.95. Nice looking, too.

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Nook room

Another room? Well, maybe. Good-looking nookie, though.

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caption here too

This fine looking table was offered in the Sears Preston, a spacious Colonial kit home. Note that the benches don't have backs! Nothing says comfort like a hard-plaster wall!

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nookie

The "Pullman Breakfast Alcove" came with your Sears Ashmore. More modest than the others, it has simple benches with no seat backs.

And its in color!  From a late 1920s Wardway/Gordon Van Tine catalog, this breakfast nook looks cozy and inviting.

And it's in color! From a late 1920s Wardway/Gordon Van Tine catalog, this breakfast nook looks cozy and inviting.

And the real deal - in the flesh - a 1930s breakfast nook as seen in the Sears Lynnhaven in southern Illinois.

Sears caption

Awesome rooster towels not included.

To learn more about Sears Homes, click here.

To learn more about Wardway Homes, click here.

To contact Rose, send an email to thorntonrose@hotmail.com

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Breakfast Nooks, Part II

January 29th, 2011 Sears Homes No comments

Judging by the traffic to this website, there’s a lot of interest in built-in breakfast nooks these days, and for good reason. They’re practical, useful, attractive, and make excellent use of a small space. As the 1933 Montgomery Ward hardware catalog promised, it’s like adding “a whole new room” to the house.

Okay, that may be a wee bit of a stretch, but the built-in breakfast nook - very popular in early 20th Century kit homes (such as those from Sears and Wards) - is a grand idea whose time has come. Again!

The McMansion has fallen from favor and as we baby boomers get older, a rising trend is more compact, easier-to-heat, easier-to-maintain smaller homes. And with smaller homes come smaller kitchens, and better use of space.

Take a look at some of the built-in breakfast nooks that were featured in a variety of magazines, including Ladies Home Journal (1911), Popular Science (1919), Sears Modern Homes catalogs (1920s) and Montgomery Ward catalogs (1920s and 30s).

To read more “Breakfast Nooks, part I” (and see more photos), click here.

To learn more about kit homes, click here.

nooks

Cover of the 1932 Montgomery Ward Building Material catalog, which featured breakfast nooks.

cover

A close-up of the built-in breakfast nook featured on the cover of the hardware catalog.

cover nook

cOn page 34 of the catalog, this "cozy corner dinette" was offered for $14.95. Not a bad deal. And it's made of clear western white pine and needed a small space of 5'6" by 3'8". Nice looking, too.

Nook room

Another room? Well, maybe. Good-looking nookie, though.

nookie from GVT

This "cozy dinette" was featured in the Wardway/GVT Modern Homes catalog.

A little scant in terms of detail, but still cute.

A little scant in terms of detail, but still cute. This little table first appeared in the February 1911 Ladies' Home Journal.

caption here

This simple breakfast table was offered with the Sears kit home, The Verona.

nookie

The "Pullman Breakfast Alcove" came with your Sears Ashmore. More modest than the others, it has simple benches with no seat backs.

The image below appeared in the June 1919 issue of Popular Mechanics and provided the ultimate space saver. By day, it was a cute little trestle table with matching benches. By night, it was an extra sleeping space for your overnight guests.

nookie ps

Easy to make and simple to use, this "convertible" breakfast table provided extra sleeping space for visitors.

nookie

As seen in the 1919 Popular Mechanics, this breakfast nook could be folded out into a bed. Overnight Guests - it's what's for dinner!

And the real deal - in the flesh - a 1930s breakfast nook as seen in the Sears Lynnhaven in southern Illinois.

Sears caption

Awesome rooster towels not included.

To learn more about Sears Homes, click here.

To learn more about Wardway Homes, click here.

To contact Rose, write thorntonrose@hotmail.com

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The Built-in Breakfast Nook: Practical, Useful, and Just Darn Cute

January 14th, 2011 Sears Homes No comments

Built-in breakfast nooks became wildly popular in the early 1920s and especially so in kit homes. After the grand Victorian home fell from favor, the bungalow craze took over and suddenly The Little House was the best house to have. (As Henry David Thoreau said, “Simplify, simplify, simplify,” and Ralph Waldo Emerson is purported to have responded, “I think one simplify would have been enough.”)

Bungalows were a fine idea whose time had come, but there was one problem: space! Creative builders and architects improvised by creating intimate spaces in small areas, such as a built-in table and matching benches for the morning meal. It was a wonderful idea, and also saved the housewife some work. It was far easier to set up and clean off a small table in the kitchen than frittering away the hours dealing with meal preparation at the formal dining room table.

Below are pictures from catalogs and magazines of the time, showing the breakfast nook of the early 1920s. At the bottom is a picture from a 1919 issue of Popular Mechanics, showing a “convertible” breakfast nook! Table by day, stiff-as-a-tabletop bed by night.

Hopefully, some history loving old-house homeowners will be able to use these vintage photos to restore the breakfast nooks in their own homes.

The first is from the February 1911 Ladies’ Home Journal. It appeared in an article titled, “If a Woman Must Work From Home.”

To read more about breakfast nooks (and see more photos), click here.

A little scant in terms of detail, but still cute.

A little scant in terms of detail, but still cute.

caption here

This simple breakfast table was offered with the Sears kit home, The Verona.

caption here too

This fine looking table was offered in the Sears Preston, a spacious Colonial kit home. Note that the benches don't have backs! Nothing says comfort like a hard-plaster wall!

Nook

This page features the breakfast table offered in the Sears Magnolia. These seats have backs!

Breakfast

This "breakfast alcove" came with the Sears home, The Honor.

nookie

The "Pullman Breakfast Alcove" came with your Sears Ashmore. More modest than the others, it has simple benches with no seat backs.

And its in color!  From a late 1920s Wardway/Gordon Van Tine catalog, this breakfast nook looks cozy and inviting.

And it's in color! From a late 1920s Wardway/Gordon Van Tine catalog, this breakfast nook looks cozy and inviting.

The image below appeared in the June 1919 issue of Popular Mechanics and provided the ultimate space saver. By day, it was a cute little trestle table with matching benches. By night, it was an extra sleeping space for your overnight guests.

nookie ps

Easy to make and simple to use, this "convertible" breakfast table provided extra sleeping space for visitors.

nookie

As seen in the 1919 Popular Mechanics, this breakfast nook could be folded out into a bed. Overnight Guests - it's what's for dinner!

And the real deal - in the flesh - a 1930s breakfast nook as seen in the Sears Lynnhaven in southern Illinois.

Sears caption

Awesome rooster towels not included.

To learn more about Sears Homes, click here.

To learn more about Wardway Homes, click here.

To contact Rose, send an email to thorntonrose@hotmail.com

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