July 12, 2021

How to design a reading nook for kids: 7 easy ideas

A reading nook makes the perfect escape for your little one, and these ideas will help you create the coziest space possible.

A reading nook makes the perfect escape for your little one, and these ideas will help you create the coziest space possible.

Want to create a quiet, small space that encourages your little one to curl up with a good book? Well, it’s time to put your DIY decorating skills to use and create a true book lover’s haven. Fortunately, it’s easier than you might think to transform any unused area in your home into a place where your kiddo can sit back, relax, and read. 

We’ve highlighted our top seven reading nook ideas to inspire you to create a cozy, kid-friendly reading space. Some of the ideas on this list are essential elements while others are fun nice-to-have options. So pick and choose from the decorating ideas in this list based on what you want from your reading nook and how much space you have. 

Finding the perfect spot

reading nook: Mattress, pillow, blanket, stuffed animals, candles and wooden toys on the floor

If you don’t already have a defined reading area in your home or apartment, there’s good news: finding the perfect spot isn’t tough. Look for any space that you can fit a reading chair or bench into and voila! You have an instant reading nook. For example, you might pick an out-of-the-way corner in a hallway or the living room, playroom, family room, dining room, bedroom, or even a small closet. 

If you have space to make an entire reading room, that’s great, but a hideaway in an unused corner, under the stairs, or by the entryway is just as good. Sometimes a smaller space can feel cozier for children and encourage them to get lost in a good book. 

Setting up the reading nook in your kid’s bedroom can also work, like a bunk bed with a cozy hideout underneath. Check out the following articles for more inspiration: 

Once you’ve identified the spot, you’ll know what you’re working with. This will be important when you’re settling on design ideas. For example, if it’s a spacious corner, you might have room for a hammock and a sturdy floor lamp. But if it’s a small space in the living room or your kid’s closet, it might be best to simply add an accent chair and a small side table. 

Our top 7 kid-friendly reading nook ideas

reading nook: Cushion back accent chair grey and black

Interior design directly impacts psychology, and the decor in your reading space can help your little one feel more at ease. Be intentional about creating a soothing, calming space that allows your kiddo to destress after a long day. All you need is a little space and some creative ideas for your reading nook design.

1. Set up good lighting

reading nook: Pink sofa with colorful pillows and lampshades

Every reading corner needs good lighting. Proper lighting is important for reading, and it helps set a comfy vibe, especially for nighttime reading. Even if you’re decorating a window seat with good natural lighting and your child usually reads during the day, a side table with a lamp still adds versatility.

Lighting options include wall sconces, floor lamps, table lamps, pendant lights, and recessed lighting. Look for bulbs with a warm glow to set a cozy and relaxed mood, and fun styles to stimulate young minds. 

Keep in mind that you don’t need the brightest light; you just need a good light source. If you’re unsure, test the light when it’s dark outside to be sure it’s bright enough. And if you have no space for a light, consider getting your child a clip-on book light instead. 

2. Add book storage

reading nook: 3-tier geometric bookcase salvaged cabin

If you don’t already have a bookcase or bookshelf near your kid’s reading nook, they’ll probably want storage space for their reading material. If you don’t have room for a bookcase, try floating shelving they can reach, or a side table with a shelf underneath it. A stack of books on the floor or a storage bench can also work if a shelf or table isn’t what you want. 

For little book collectors, consider lining a wall of their reading corner with a bookcase to create a mini home library. You can also transform your home office with bookshelves so that it doubles as a home library and a kid’s corner. 

3. Install curtains

reading nook: Pink and white children's room with a tent and a wooden bench

Reading nooks near or beside a window will need curtains or blinds when the sunlight is too bright. Sheer or semi-sheer curtains will let in some light while filtering it to keep your book nook cozy. Lighter-colored sheer fabric can also create a beautiful glow from the natural light around your reading spot, enhancing the ambiance while adding a subtle pop of color. 

Remember, the perfect reading spot for you will depend on your tastes. If your child prefers the idea of a cozy reading nook with blackout curtains and a fun boho print instead of solid bright colors and sheer fabric, go for what they love. Also, many built-in reading nooks and window seats can have curtains that close it off from the rest of the space, giving your kiddo some privacy. 

4. Choose comfy seating

Girl reading a book while sitting on a bean bag

The perfect reading chair is one that beckons your child to spend time on it. Seating options to consider might include an accent chair, recliner, rocking chair, padded bench, chaise lounge, daybed, beanbag, or hammock. Or you might have a bench built into a window seat or nook. 

Choose seating that’s comfy on its own without any throw pillows or blankets (although we recommend those). Ultimately, you want every element of your reading area to be as comfortable as possible on its own. 

5. Add throw pillows and blankets

Blankets and pillows on the floor

What kid wouldn’t want tons of throw pillows and blankets in their reading nook? Of course, the number of throw pillows and blankets you can use will vary based on how much room you have. For example, a daybed in a reading room might accommodate a large pile of pillows and multiple throw blankets for snuggling. Meanwhile, a small reading corner with an accent chair might only have room for a child’s favorite pillow and blanket. 

For these cozy accents, you can stick to the main color palette of your home decor or pick designs that add a pop of color. Whether you go for subtle and neutral tones or multi-hued prints and patterns, have fun with it. 

6. Add a table 

Heart shaped pillow on a pink armchair with a side table and white shelf

Tables in a reading nook are usually essential for adults and children alike. Your little one can keep the current book(s) they’re reading on the table, as well as a lamp to brighten the reading area. A side table also makes the perfect spot to set drinks and snacks. 

If you’re looking for DIY ideas and have spare books, you could even make your own table from old books. Depending on your child’s age and interests, try involving them in your DIY craft so they can personalize their nook. 

7. Don’t forget the finishing touches

Light blue armchair with a star shaped pillow, stuffed animals and wooden toys

Adding decorative touches to your kid’s reading nook is like the icing on the cake. The furniture, setting, lighting, and any pillows or blankets you already have will create a lovely space, but the decor gives it personality. 

Wall art is one of the most accessible options — you might want to hang fun artwork, a completed puzzle, or even stuffed animals above their space if the wall is blank.

House plants are another great option as they not only add greenery, but they can also improve your mood to encourage relaxation. (However, depending on your little one’s age, faux plants might be better.) 

Other decor options might include LED candles, action figures, dolls, fairy lights in a jar, cute inspirational quotes, or stuffed animals. The next time you’re at your local library, peruse the kid’s reading corner for more kid-friendly decor inspiration. 

Set up an at-home reading adventure 

Use these kid’s reading nook ideas to design a reading area your little one will love. The main goal is to create a fun and cozy space where they can relax and enjoy a good book. Remember, you can pick and choose from these ideas, or you can use them all to create a comfy corner. And if your kid is old enough, be sure to ask them which ideas they like, too! 

Be sure to check out Coaster Furniture’s full selection of furniture when you’re ready to start shopping and use our store locator to find a retailer near you.

Cushion Back Accent Chair Grey and Black Cushion Back Accent Chair Grey and Black - Hover
CoasterElevations

Cushion Back Accent Chair Grey and Black

3-tier Geometric Bookcase Salvaged Cabin 3-tier Geometric Bookcase Salvaged Cabin - Hover
CoasterEveryday

3-tier Geometric Bookcase Salvaged Cabin

Browse All Furniture

Join our mailing list

    TOP