How to Fit a Reading Nook into the Smallest of Spaces

How to Fit a Reading Nook into the Smallest of Spaces

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Nancy Mitchell
Oct 17, 2017
(Image credit: Kyle Born Photography)

When the weather starts to get cooler, there is no better place to be than inside, curled up with a good book. Sure, your couch or your bed will do in a pinch—but there's also something delightfully luxurious about having a little tucked-away spot designated just for reading. If you live in a smaller home, this may seem like an impossible dream—which is why we've rounded up these 10 ways to add a reading nook to even the smallest of spaces.

(Image credit: BHG)

The tininess of this little nook from BHG is part of its appeal. In a little alcove beneath a dormer window, a built-in bench with comfy cushion is a perfect spot to perch (and the table right next to it is a perfect spot to rest a cup of tea).

(Image credit: Desire to Inspire)

This alcove built-in, spotted on Desire to Inspire, is a double whammy—built-in workspace and built-in reading nook, all in one.

(Image credit: Houzz)

In this home spotted on Houzz, a nook at the end of a hallway is an ideal spot for two daybeds, perfect for two friends (or siblings) to read alone together.

(Image credit: Julia Robbs/A Cup of Jo)

In this space from Cup of Jo, the end of a very narrow room becomes a comfy and well-lit reading nook.

(Image credit: Cathy Pyle)

But Nancy, you may be saying—none of these ideas will work for me, because I rent my home, and if I start building in window seats my landlord might get a little suspicious. I hear you. Here are some solutions for renters, too. The reading nook in this UK home is just as inviting as any above—and it's created simply by placing an armchair in a corner, surrounded by bookshelves.

(Image credit: Stylizmo)

When space is at a premium, wall-mounted bookshelves are a great option, because they take up less space than the freestanding version, and lend a cohesive, built-in look. In this little corner from Stylizmo, shelves, a lamp, and a comfy chaise lounge make for a perfect place to while away the winter hours.

(Image credit: Kyle Born Photography )

In this Philadelphia home, a landing turns into a reading nook with the help of some wall-mounted shelves and a couple of daybed mattresses from Urban Outfitters, piled two deep. This little spot has the advantage of being both a reading nook and a great spot for overnight guests to crash.

(Image credit: Mama.Papa.Buba)

If you have a spare closet—okay, that seems farfetched, but maybe there are people living in small apartments with spare closets?—you could transform it into a reading nook, like Jen from Mama Papa Buba did for her little girl. All that's required is a cushion and big old pile of pillows.

(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)

It seems so natural to the room that you almost wouldn't guess it's not built in, but the window seat/reading nook in the living room of Annie, Emma, and Francesca's Toronto apartment was a completely DIY affair—created from a storage bench (smart thinking) cradled by two bookshelves. The setup provides lots of extra storage in their living room without taking up much floor space—definitely a win-win.

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