Create a Cozy Reading Nook

My dream house doesn't necessarily have endless square footage or a state-of-the-art kitchen. I'd even happily forgo the walk-in closet and two-car garage. My domestic desires harken back to the bookwormish, Nancy Drew–loving third grader I used to be; in the house of my dreams, I want a wood-paneled library with wall-to-wall books and an armchair by the fire. Until I get there, however, I'm going to cherish my very own #MeMoment in an ultra-cozy reading nook.
(Source: Lonny)Here's what makes a nook a place you'd curl up in all day long.

1. The Right Seat. A deep, plush, tufted chair with good arm support is crucial to this endeavor. I prefer armchairs to sofas (reading is a solitary pursuit), and ideally an ottoman or some other footrest would be involved. In the photo above, I would definitely be dragging that pouf over.

2. The Right Light. No overheads, please! They're the antithesis of ambiance. A floor lamp with a nice simple shade always gets my vote—diffuse enough to be welcoming, directed enough to make for good visibility.

3. Pillows. Pile them on. One behind your neck, one under your shoulders or your elbows, etc. The point is to feel cocooned in luxury.

4. Warmth. Same idea as the pillows. Obviously this wouldn't apply in tropical settings (lazing by a pool, for example) or in the heat of summer, but for a good read in the dead of winter, a blanket or sheepskin throw is always handy. And if you doze off pleasantly in the midst of a good book? Even better.

5. The Extras. A little table or stool by the side of your chair for drinks or a snack. Softness underfoot to cushion your transition from reading time to real world. A window that looks out on something beautiful or inspiring. All of these make the reading experience sui generis.


(Source: Lonny)Styling your books is of secondary importance, but worth thinking about nonetheless. I've always preferred organizing by subject matter or author to displaying by color palette, and interspersing little artworks and objets amid the titles. Vintage books, needless to say, are works of art in and of themselves.

(Sources: Lonny)But why stop at bookshelves? In my perfect home, books would mingle effortlessly in every room—on tables, chairs, counters, perhaps even floors (as in this very European example above). The point is, books are the ultimate luxury: a chance to escape from the everyday for a few minutes or a few hours. What could be more of a #MeMoment than that?


I'm the former Executive Editor of Lonny.
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