For bibliophiles, there’s nothing like having a place in your home dedicated entirely to the pleasures of reading. For tips on deciding where and how to make that literary dream a reality, look no further. Here are the things every reading nook and book-lover needs to have in their space.
A window: Considering choosing a space based on the time of day you usually read. If it’s in the evening, a west-facing window will give you the most light; east-facing is best if you are more likely to use it earlier in the day.
A lamp: more light is always better for your eyes when reading, and if you read late at night or your rooms don’t have good natural lighting, a lamp is an absolute must-have. A floor lamp or a reading lamp on a side table will do the trick.
Of course there has to be a place to sit and cozy up or recline and stretch. Seating choices can be anything you love that fits in your space. If you’re a chair person, it could be a recliner, an antique rocking chair, a chaise lounge, or an overstuffed armchair, to name just a few.
If you prefer space to stretch or want to use something a little more unexpected, a daybed, a window seat, or a padded chest tucked between bookshelves are all great options.
And for a reading nook in a kid’s bedroom or playroom, tykes may be happiest with no more than a soft, colorful rug and a pile of pillows.
A true book-lover is going to want to spend a lot of time here, so your nook should not only be stylish, but also both comfortable and ergonomically sound. Pillows add comfort, extra support, and the ability to change position regularly. A blanket or afghan is a necessity for fall and winter reading (and so is a place to set your mug of tea or cocoa).
If there’s wall space between all those bookshelves, consider creating an homage to a favorite author or time period. Framed pages of old books—ones with highlights or marginalia—add unexpected flair. But the décor doesn’t have to be book themed. Choose art, photos, or objects you would enjoy looking at in those times when you need to look up from the page and contemplate a while.
Books, of course, should be the star of the space. A reading nook surrounded by bookshelves feels natural, but if quantity isn’t feasible for your space, a single wall shelf or series of floating shelves stacked with your currently-reading and to-be-read materials will do the trick, and you can easily rotate them as needed.
And if you spend a lot of time reading e-books, make sure you have an outlet nearby and a place to store your e-reader’s charging cable.
Whatever your tastes in books or décor, these five essential elements will ensure you have the perfect place to sink into your favorite read.