A reading nook provides a dedicated place away from distractions that can really help make reading a joy. A good selection of titles, ambient lighting and comfy cushions styled on the floor make a space that children will really love.
Keep kids engaged by rotating the reading matter and adding regular new titles. Storybooks are ideal for under-fives, as they convey the narrative via bold illustrations, pop-ups and flaps, rather than lots of words. For children approaching school age, flash cards are a quirky alternative to leafing through regular books. Your nook should provide an uncluttered space to lay them out too.
Storage solutions that children can access themselves are important. Something like the Minene Large Storage Basket keeps books orderly and gives you the option of moving it out of the way when reading time's over. Another solution is the Plan Toys Wagon. It's perfect for parking up next to a beanbag on the floor, so they can grab a book whenever they like. If you'd rather use a shelf, try to create a visual display with the covers facing outwards. Under-fives are stimulated primarily by visuals, so help them choose by the cover artwork. Of course they say not to judge a book by its cover, but kids definitely do - so roll with it.
To encourage reluctant readers, or kids who'd rather be playing with toys, characterful cushions can be a really effective lure. We love the Wigiwama Button and Star Cushions and the Lion Cushion by OYOY, all of which add a playful touch and amp up the comfort.
A reading nook needs to entice. For ours, we painted a dark feature wall to enhance the cosy atmosphere and added some decals on the white walls for extra interest. They're a simple solution for a temporary decorative update. Soft lighting is also key. The Miss Moon Lamp by Rose in April casts a soothing light that's ideal for helping kids unwind before bed. For readers that like to migrate from nook to bed, something like the Avery Row Snow Mountain Silicone Night Light is a fun portable choice.
The relaxing environment is also great for other low-energy activities such as simple crafts, puzzles and open-ended play. The Colouring Book by The Jam Tart has plenty of pages for kids to colour and the Wee Gallery Lacing Cards encourage kids to take five, slow down and learn. Adding a table, or a chair they can use as a table, gives a dedicated space for taking activities off the floor too, while a Wobbel Board is ingeniously multi-functional - it can be a stool, a little table or somewhere to rock and read.
Enjoyed this collection? If you’re looking for more inspo, we’ve curated each room in the house. Take a look at our tips for putting together a mint nursery or a creative play space. Our articles on creating a family living room and bathroom, focus on making spaces that suit you and them, while our kitchen ideas will help you curate a mess-free, stylish place to eat.