Last October, we moved from a Victorian-era apartment in Uptown to a nearby, charming circa-1900s shotgun. We gave up a few turn of the 20th-century architectural details, but gained a lot more space. The increase in space enabled me to create a proper reading nook, for which I will be eternally grateful. Whether you have a spare room or simply a tiny corner to claim, here are a few tips for making it cozy. Which is an especially attractive proposition as we head into fall.
First, you must acquire a comfortable chair. The emphasis here is on the word comfortable. This is non-negotiable, because you and I both know you will not spend quality time kicking back with your favorite book if you are seated in a hard, unforgiving chair. Your reading nook is not for show; it is for reading, relaxing, meditating and journaling. You’ll likely spend a lot of time in this spot if you are uncompromising about comfort.
Next, it is vital to include all things soft and fuzzy. I cannot describe in a way that will do it justice the blissful transition of removing your fuzzy house slippers, placing your soles on a furry rug, then wrapping yourself in a fluffy blanket. Just trust me on this one. It is divine!
Now, it’s time to add the items you will use in this space. Grab your favorite books, your current read, notebooks and journals, pens, a coaster and a couple of decorative items. These should all be within reach, preferably on a chic little side table. Add extra books, magazines and notebooks to a handy basket. The coaster will remind you to always have a hot cup of coffee, tea or cocoa or a cold glass of a refreshing sipper when you settle in.
Finally, surround yourself with art, plants and other decorative items. These are the finishing touches that add life to your spaces. Which of course is literal when it comes to plants. If you have a black thumb, consider fresh flowers, faux foliage or paper flowers. If plants aren’t your thing, focus on the art. You can also frame postcards, pressed botanicals, book covers or your favorite album covers. Pick pieces that are meaningful and inspire or transport you. Enjoy making this space your own and infusing it with your personal style. (Editor’s Note: A version of this story published at an earlier date on myneworleans.com.)