Because it's a tricky operation, I seldom advise that a storage area be converted into a space with a different function. &L Sometimes, though, the need for additional usable square footage is so acute that I cast aside caution.
Another incentive for taking chances arises when storage room isn't needed any longer. In the case of a bedroom converted into a sitting room, for example, there's no reason to retain all the closets.
The same consideration applied in the space shown in the photo. Believe it or not, this used to be the pantry in an old home. It was completely redesigned to suit the needs of a young professional couple who liked the idea of having an eat-in kitchen that could do double duty as a sitting area.
The wall dividing the kitchen from the pantry was removed, along with all the old-fashioned glass-fronted cabinets. That opened the way for the narrow pantry to be integrated with the rest of the space. Modern cabinets, providing twice as much storage room as the old cabinets and pantry combined, were then installed on another kitchen wall.
Since an adjoining dining room was to be used for most meals, it became possible to convert the former pantry space into a sitting-snacking area with a full view of the kitchen. In this way, cooking was smoothly combined with cocktails. The cozy nook also serves as a comfortable spot for breakfasts.
As the photo shows, a modular unit was installed to form an angled seating piece. The alcove behind it on the left used to be a utility closet. The portion below sofa height is still used for storage, while the rest of the opening was illuminated for the display of decorative accessories.
The walls of the sitting area were covered with a paper that gives this section of the expanded room an identity all its own. But its design is not divorced from the kitchen's, since the walls in that part of the space were painted in an off-white matching the background of the patterned paper.
By minimizing the contrast between the wall and the fabric of the seating unit, the space is made to seem significantly larger than is actually the case.