I love to read, there is nothing more relaxing than curling up under a cosy blanket and immersing myself in a good book. I didn’t develop a love of books as a child, instead it came when I was a teenager and so I don’t have very many memories of reading or of my favourite childhood books. We have tried to encourage a love of books and reading from the day our little girl was born, I love having books easily accessible for her and it has meant that she loves her books, carries them round and plays with them in her cot when she wakes up. One of her very first words was ‘bookie’ and I love that she brings me and her dad books for us to read to her (although she does prefer her dad to read to her but I wont take that personally he is a much better reader than me!)
Whenever I’m planning a children’s space one of the things I always try to incorporate is a cosy place to sit and read. Stories are a wonderful way to capture and enhance your imagination and there is something so magical about seeing little ones faces light up when you read them a story and watching them learn to point to everything they recognise on the pages. A space to cuddle up with a book also serves as a comfy place to sit and watch them play too, or for them to enjoy some quiet time when they are transitioning out of naptime.
We have a few cosy reading areas in the house. Sometimes it’s the perfect solution to how to use a small nook or otherwise awkward area of a room, and there are so many space saving and easy ways to introduce a reading area into your child’s space. Whenever I think about designing and styling a reading area there are a few things I like to think about and include.
I first think about the space I have to work with and how to utilise or introduce somewhere comfy to sit. With small spaces this can mean using any seating already in the room like a nursing chair or the bed itself. Where there is a little more space some of my favourite things are floor cushions and a play tent, we have a pavilion tent in the little acorns room and she loves it! I also love using a tepee tent or canopy to create a cosy area. Play sofas are also a fab way to create a comfy area that can also double up as hours of fun as soft play too.
When thinking about how to store and display the books, I like to have them accessible so that they can reach them independently. Open shelving is perfect for this, like the ikea Flint picture ledge If you attach them to the wall at a lower height. I also love to use magazine racks, Aykasa crates and baskets to keep them lower down and more mobile. The little acorn has a wagon that she loves to pull around which would be perfect for storing books under the bed and pulling out to choose a book.
Lastly is the fun bit, making it pretty and cosy. This is where I love to add in soft lighting, we have added battery powered fairy lights to the pavilion tent and this makes the space feel warm and inviting. Adding fun artwork and bunting to the area can also make it individual and coordinate with the rest of the room.
Most importantly though you don’t need to spend loads of money or buy lots of things to create a space your child will love. There are many times where we throw some duvets and blankets on the floor and cuddle up together to read ‘The tiger that came to tea’ for the 100th time, the thing they want most is you (or in our case my husband, he does a much better tiger voice apparently!)
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Thanks so much for reading
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Great tips Helena!
Thanks so much Marta!