Reading Nooks & Books
06/08 Design Tips

Reading Nooks & Books

A place to get your summer reading in

Our mission to Make Life Beautiful has taken on various meanings since we started this journey, but our goal from the beginning has been to inspire people to make their homes a more beautiful place, and it remains the same. We want to continue to inspire people to create beauty around them and believe that good design has the power to draw us in and spend more time with the people we love. It all starts with love at home.

Today, we want to share a bit of joy in this small space of the internet by talking about one way we have been creating beauty around us at home — books. Books have the power to teach and transport us and we’ve been carving out small spaces to enjoy them.

Xo - Shea McGee

 
We can appreciate a bookcase that’s actually filled with books! Love the layering of the artwork. Design by @mikelwelch
 

We can appreciate a bookcase that’s actually filled with books! Love the layering of the artwork. Design by @mikelwelch

We’ve always had a thing for reading nooks, but after months of staying inside and social distancing, we’ve found a new level of appreciation. From window seats to any corner we can find, there's something about them that feels charming and sophisticated all at once, and we love the way they instantly make a home feel lived-in.

Scroll to the bottom for our summer reading list!

Step One: Start with a Cozy Chair

Nooks & Books

The first thing you need to create the perfect reading nook is a cozy chair, ideally one with a place to rest your arms and curl up for a long, post-read nap.

In The McGee Home, we created a little reading nook in the master bedroom with a soft, linen chair, a modern floor lamp, and deep-hued leather ottoman. Add a single pillow and throw over the top, and the look is complete!

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Step Two: Add In a Floor Lamp

Nooks & Books

Once you have your chair, adding a floor lamp is a perfect way to add some height and light for late-night reading sessions.

In this bedroom-corner nook, we paired a tall, streamlined floor lamp with an abstract painting, classic rounded leather chair, and a striped pillow for the perfect mix of tones and textures. This look is the perfect example of the fact that all you really need to create a reading nook is a place to sit, a lamp, and a little decor to set the scene.

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Step 3: Mix in a side table

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You don't need a large side table to do the trick, but it's always ideal to have something large enough to hold a candle, drink, or snack. We tend to choose side-tables with more solid bases for nooks because they don't compete with the legs of the chair.

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Step 4: Layer in a Throw

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Last but not least, adding a cozy throw is a must! Especially for enjoying chilly early morning and settling in for quiet evenings. If you can't get that picture-perfect, lived-in drape, then don't worry. Just fold and place your throw on the back or over the arms for easy styling.

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Step 5: Add a good book! We have a few recommendations

And for the kids

 

A few inspiration pics for styling those books

A skateboard mixed in with a few of your favorite books — we’re all for it! Via Paula Rallis

A skateboard mixed in with a few of your favorite books — we’re all for it! Via Paula Rallis

Love how Ajiri Aki let’s the spine of her books shine. It’s practical and beautifully incorporated with that wall color. Design by @ madamedelamaison

Love how Ajiri Aki let’s the spine of her books shine. It’s practical and beautifully incorporated with that wall color. Design by @madamedelamaison