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A home library and reading nook calls for comfortable home design

October 15, 2013

Area RugBuilding a home library not only helps organize a book collection, but can provide an interesting section of the room design in a home office, den or family room. In a comfortably furnished corner with the nature-inspired Hamptons area rug from Shaw Floors' Accents collection, homeowners can enjoy a place to sit back and relax with a great read.

Good lighting, a chair to sink into and sturdy shelving are important elements in a book nook. According to, the amount of space available will determine what type of shelving is best - built-ins with floor-to-ceiling storage, mounted shelving that allows adjustment for shelf height or glassed-in bookcases that preserve older books.

Organizing the volumes may be done alphabetically, by subject or genre or even color. It may be best to separate hardcovers from paperbacks for aesthetic appeal. Also, lining up two rows of paperbacks, with taller ones in the back row, doubles the storage on one shelf.

Seeing the light
Soft lighting is great to underscore the coziness of an area set off by itself and may come from a small secondary lamp. But a task lamp focused on the reading area from over the shoulder is the best way to prevent eye strain.

If the nook can be located next to a window for natural light during the day, all the better. Natural light and energy-saving LED illumination create the least amount of glare on a reading tablet or laptop screen, if one chooses to read digitally.

Provide comforts
A reading area should be set off from the overall space and the easiest way to do that is to paint it a different, but complementary color from the rest of the room. An accent wall is enough if the nook doesn't have any dividers around it.

Deeply cushioned love seats, beanbag chairs or over-sized floor pillows will provide comfortable seating. That's where a nicely cushioned area rug over beautiful wood flooring comes in handy. There should also be plenty of smaller pillows for back support.

For a true book lover, accessorizing a reading nook may incorporate art or collectibles related to the written word - old book covers, artwork of literary characters or a collection of bookmarks arranged in a wall gallery. Another way to personalize the home design is to add photographs or personal items alongside books on the shelves.