Possibly the best way to enjoy a book, a view, or a glass of wine…

Sometimes the sofa isn’t enough. Sometimes we need more intimate spaces to hide away from the world with a good book, a fresh brew, or something stronger. Window seats are the perfect way to make use of space, particularly when the recesses are naturally deep, in large bay windows or a splayed recess within stone or cob walls. When we are building – the one shown here is newly built, and the new passive house walls are deep –  and when furnishing our homes, I think it’s really important not to overlook how much window seats can add to a room. Whenever I see those that have become dead space, over cluttered with ornaments or collecting dust, I just see an opportunity for a sunny place wasted. By introducing a window seat, you instantly make use of the space, acquire a whole new comfy place to relax, and as with any homemade furnishing, add a touch of style and charm.

Indeed, whilst we can use window seats as stylistic features, their sole purpose is to be cosy and comfortable. They are places to relax, ponder and unwind, as relevant to our enjoyment of the warm summer sun as in watching  the wildest winter storms unfold. So the cushions themselves must be welcoming and snug, whilst remaining firm and fitting. There is nothing more irritating than a window seat that doesn’t properly fit the window sill, so that it slides around beneath you, or off.

As always, it’s great to experiment with different fabrics, colours, patterns and textures – the more daring the colour or pattern of your fabric, the more prominent your window seat will be as a feature of the room. Don’t worry too much about the fabric being the hardest wearing – of course it must be enough but  it almost certainly won’t have to endure the same usage as the sofa or arm chair. It will require the odd wash though, as sometimes they fall victim to water ingress. The great thing about this design is that they are easily removable, you can simply slip the cushion out whenever you need to.

For this window seat, which fits a splayed window, I’ve used sea green cotton with hessian sack coloured jute. It works perfectly because the material is soft, fairly robust, and represents the slightly agricultural theme that I was going for with this particular room ( the room was part of a stable yard until a few years ago ). Although it’s fairly neutral, it adds just enough colour to be noticeable as it draws your eye to the landscape beyond. Of course, if you do opt for a plainer, neutral material, you can always dress it up and add a splash of colour by making cushions to go with it (see Design & Make ‘Torn Patch Cushion’).

The good news is that this window seat design is so easy and simple to make. It’s not fussy, it looks great and it fits perfectly. You can add padding, piping and buttons if you like, but to achieve what I have done here, it really doesn’t take up much time at all.


If you would like the full instructions of how to make your own simple window seat, follow the link below: https://designandmake.net/product/window-seat/

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