The dining room’s too formal, the coffee table’s too low, and the kitchen island just isn’t as comfortable as you’d hoped it would be. So where in your home can you just relax with a cup of coffee?

Enter the kitchen nook.

In terms of a perfect medium between substance and style, this versatile space gets nowhere near the credit it deserves. Casual, but not careless. Comfortable, but still elegant. Efficient, but never austere, the nook wins the Miss Congeniality award for all-around best feature to have in your kitchen.

Take a look at these seven kitchen nooks for great ideas on how to design your own. Do you think a nook would work in your kitchen?

1. Blissful Bay Window

Transform a bay window into a café-like space with a counter-height table and a pair of stools. Add plush pillows, and enjoy the view.

Wentworth, Inc. - kitchen nookProject completed by Wentworth, Inc. 

2. Green House Effect

Upholstered bench seating in a cheerful pattern creates a comfortable place to rest and rejuvenate. Coordinate fabrics with the kitchen’s decorative accents for a cohesive look.

Jorge Rosso Architecture Interiors - kitchen nookPhoto courtesy of Jorge Rosso Architecture Interiors

3. Dine and Dash

A retro vinyl corner bench is as charming and stylish as a fifties diner. Complete the midcentury picture with a sharp pair of bentwood dinette chairs in atomic orange.

Robin Chell Design - kitchen nookPhoto courtesy of Robin Chell Design

4. Bohemian Rhapsody

A canvas drum pendant and eclectically tiled walls save this cozy nook from a case of the drabs. Wraparound built-ins make this eat-in ideal for two or ten.

Errez Design - kitchen nookPhoto courtesy of Errez Design

5. Breakfast Booth

Blonde wood and careful craftsmanship take this built-in booth to another level of elegance. Open shelves make finding serveware a snap.

Thielsen Architects - kitchen nookProject completed by Thielsen Architects

6. Tuscan Texture

Kitchen nooks can be built on a large or small scale, depending on your tastes and dining needs. Finishing touches such as pillows, window treatments, and light fixtures give your nook cohesive style.

Siemasko + Verbridge - kitchen nookProject completed by Siemasko + Verbridge

7. Moroccan Modern

Modernize an outdated kitchen nook with neutral colors and bright whites. Add Moroccan patterns and textures for a shot of interest.

HOUSEplay Interiors - kitchen nookPhoto courtesy of HOUSEplay Interiors

Is an eat-in nook in your kitchen’s future? What’s the nook of your dreams?

Top Image Credit: HOUSEplay Interiors