As regular readers know, I’m a book-a-holic. A steady reader, I keep most books after I read them because I love to share and because seeing books lined up on shelves makes me happy (though not the dusting!).
Although I don’t NEED a quiet place and can read anywhere, any time, a private, comfy place just to curl up with a good book is a treat. You don’t need a big home to create that perfect get away for yourself. So whether your idea of heavy reading is to curl up with the latest issue of People magazine or A Tale of Two Cities, here are some ideas to help create your own reading nook.
Reading Corners for your Pleasure
A good reading corner has a couple of primary requirements: comfort and good light. What’s your definition of comfort – a place to stretch out and recline or a place to snuggle into an overstuffed chair with your legs tucked up? Good light can be lots of windows during the day, but you definitely need a lamp placed nearby to give bright light on cloudy days and at night. Ideally the light would come over your shoulder, lighting the pages.
Window light, lamp light, a comfy chair away from the hubbub – perfect to catch up on the latest magazine articles….
A chaise is a great option for a reading area. Plus, you can even snuggle with the kids and share your love of reading with them.
Is this on a porch? Heavenly! All it needs is a stack of books next to the day bed and I am SO there. This would be another great place to snuggle with kids and calm them with a good story.
Sometimes your reading corner has to share space with the TV and family room activities. The good side of that is that it keeps you involved in the family activities even though you’re sitting in “your chair” and that you can keep an eye on busy kids. The downside is that it might be a little chaotic to focus on a plot line. So if the kids are up and needing attention, relax with a magazine and enjoy the pretty pictures. After they’re in bed, pull out the delicious novel.
Tucked Away Reading Nooks
Sometimes floor plans have quirky little spaces that you can’t quite figure out what to do with. Is there room for a chair, chaise, recliner/rocker? Or maybe an unused window seat with a view of the back yard? We’re usually talking small spaces here, but that doesn’t mean you can’t personalize it. Find a pretty table (also practical), a fabulous lamp and warm, cozy throw and you’re in business – a place of your own. Anywhere can become your retreat.
Take an extra wide window ledge and create a window seat with the addition of a couple of fluffy pillows.
A little bump-out or sitting area in a bedroom is a perfect place for a reading and relaxing corner. Kids allowed by invitation only!
Create a Library
Maybe you’re lucky enough to have a den or extra bedroom that you can turn into your own personal reading room! Some shelves to hold all those tomes, a chair or two and of course, some great lighting. Would you even want a whole room devoted to books?
This second room seems to be missing the comfortable chair part, but you can see it’s a small room used for music and reading (maybe musicians need more uncomfortable chairs in order to concentrate?).
A very modern library (and a pretty good sized room!). This idea can be replicated in a smaller space by choosing shelving to fit your wall length, choose a small lamp and leave out the giant round ottoman. The restful gray walls and brown sofa make a stylish place to relax.
Don’t feel like going to the park to get your outdoor fix? Fashion a little getaway right on your own balcony or deck. Even though most of us are smack in the middle of freezing winter weather (even here in the northwest), we can dream of warm days to come when we’ll once again be eager to take our books outside.
Each of us needs a quiet space – some like to read, others want to knit, paint, meditate. Carving that space for ourselves both in time and actual physical space can be a challenge. How do you find the time and space for your retreat area?
I’ll leave you with this image of a funky library/seating combo. Ignoring the funky skeleton, does this say “comfort” and “retreat” to you?
Happy Reading! (by the way, if you’re looking for a new home decor book for your library and to get you motivated this year, check out options in the My Bookshelf tab at the very top of the page)