Few things warm the soul quite like reading a great book. Now I’m not talking about Dr. Seuss or anything you can finish in less than seven minutes. I’m talking about page turners that envelop you in another world and make you lose track of time. In those rare moments when the kids are off at Nana’s house or taking a nap, a good book and a cup of tea (or maybe something a little stronger) can allow you to recharge your batteries and get you ready to face the rest of your to-do list.
Finding a place in your home that’s conducive to both reading and relaxation will help you create an experience that you can turn to when you need a few moments to yourself. Here are a few tips to help you design a cozy reading nook retreat of your own.
Whether it is a plush arm chair or a chaise loaded with pillows, find your ideal piece of furniture to curl up in. Is it something you already own or can you splurge for something new? When looking, consider the dimensions of your nook. Is it a large open space near a window or an enclosed area under the stairs? These details will effect what type(s) of furniture you can incorporate into your nook. Opt for a simplistic setting, with muted colors with pillows and blankets within arms reach.
Let There Be Light
Reading tiny text can be hard on your eyes, especially if you are in a dimly lit room. When scouting out potential reading nook areas, try to find a spot with as much natural night as possible. Reading near a window, below a skylight, on the balcony or in the middle of the back porch will give you the light you need and provide you with a little extra vitamin D. If the light is too bright, use grommet curtains to soften the sun. If you’d rather (or have to) hole up in a dark corner, bring an overhead pendant light with you. Avoid fluorescent bulbs that can hurt your eyes because they emit a distorted spectrum of light and often flicker.
Search for Silence
Avoid setting up shop in an area near your TV or computer. While it is a great way to be alone without being apart, having your nook in the loudest room of your house can cause major distractions when you are trying to get into a juicy plot line. Create a cozy reading nook not by finding a large, conveniently-located space but by utilizing a small, quiet one.
When decorating your cozy nook, choose a color palette that is soft, soothing and subtle. Fuchsia walls and wacky-patterned pillows will catch your eye and draw you away from your novel. Location is an essential factor in adding or subtracting distractions from your nook. If you are in a messy bedroom, the clutter might keep you raising your eyes and fighting the desire to relax with the constant reminder to clean. Arrange your nook so your only break from reading is to gaze out the window to ponder what you just read.
A Row of Readers
Nothing screams cozy like a book nook surrounded by shelves of novels, readers and fairy tales. If a built-in bookshelf can’t be done, opt for floating shelves, a do-it-yourself cubby or dresser with drawers to display and store your beloved paperbacks. Include a small table or flat surface for placing drinks or snacks.
By Lauren Hooper: Lauren loves the quiet life. Give her a cup of tea, a biscuit and a few writing assignments and she’s a happy camper.