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.
Cover of the 1932 Montgomery Ward Building Material catalog, which featured breakfast nooks.
A close-up of the built-in breakfast nook featured on the cover of the hardware catalog.
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.
Another room? Well, maybe. Good-looking nookie, though.
This "cozy dinette" was featured in the Wardway/GVT Modern Homes catalog.
A little scant in terms of detail, but still cute. This little table first appeared in the February 1911 Ladies' Home Journal.
This simple breakfast table was offered with the Sears kit home, The Verona.
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.
Easy to make and simple to use, this "convertible" breakfast table provided extra sleeping space for visitors.
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.
Awesome rooster towels not included.
To learn more about Sears Homes, click here.
To learn more about Wardway Homes, click here.
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