The Breakfast Nook and Cupboard


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On this page are some photos of the breakfast nook in our kitchen and the cupboard that is in it. This was not original to the house, but it does answer some of our storage needs and given the sorry state of the kitchen area when we bought the house it fits there was no going back to a totally stock kitchen. My aim instead has been to make the whole kitchen area look like an early addition to the house (which most of it was). The cabinet comes from Beatrice Middle School in Beatrice, Nebraska. We got it when they auctioned off its contents prior to demolition. There were actually two of these, a pair of mirror image cabinets. They had been in the home economics classroom and were covered with many layers of paint. I wound up stripping this one and then restaining it and varnishing it to make it look roughly as it would have 80 or so years ago when it was new. The mill on the side is a Dutch coffee grinder my parents brought over when they immigrated from Europe to Canada and the US.

In this photo, you see how the cupboard is built in to fit into the window frame in the nook. In order to do this, I had to strip the six or so layers of paint off the windows and adjust the height of the cabinet with shims so that the window sill and the cabinet countertop were at the same level. It worked pretty well. Even though the room is pretty small, this location allows it to fit in our kitchen area without crowding the breakfast table area too much for comfort. You can estimate the scale of the whole thing when you know that the full sized floor tiles are 12 inches by 12 inches.

Because the stains used originally on the wood window trim and the cabinet itself were not likely of the same color, the color match between the two is not perfect. But by giving them both a coat or two of the same varnish, and by using some analine dyes on the cabinet, I have gotten them to match up reasonably well. I tried to do the same sort of thing to match up the mopboard, with greater or lesser success depending on the piece of mopboard you look at. You don't really notice it unless you look for it, but of course, I can't help but look for it. If you look closely, you can probably see that I still need to add a molding strip at the back edge to cover the gap between the cabinet and the wall.

In the next image on the right you get a better sense of the cabinet itself. Since the nook is small, the angle of the photo is a bit odd. You can see the three lower drawers and the doors that cover shelves in the top. It holds a lot and is therefore very useful to us for holding kitchen supplies and pantry items.

1997 msv@unlserve.unl.edu