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Reading Chair. Bookcase. Drawing easel. My own little space to do with as I please! Help!

(34 Posts)
NiceWineDow Mon 20-Jul-15 18:21:45


I have the opportunity to create a small space for myself in my living room, which is L shaped.

It's not big, the floor space is about the size of a double mattress.

I have a love of books and a love of art. All my books have been in storage for about g years. I'm dying to get a bookcase and get them on display.

I have just started to get into drawing and painting, after a 20 year hiatus. I'd like to incorporate this into my space, if I have enough space that is.

Just wondering if anyone had any bright ideas so that I use the space well. I like the idea of an old rustic bookcase and a lovely comfy reading chair. Not sure what kind of chair. I already have one of those winged chairs and it's not comfy enough for reading. I hate it!

Also a lovely lamp and maybe a little table would be nice.

Not a lot of money to do this with, will probably try and eBay it all.

It's weird. I have dreamed of doing this for so many years. Now I have the opportunity, I feel indecisive and wary as I don't want to get it wrong. Any ideas would be gratefully received.

headlesslambrini Mon 20-Jul-15 18:30:37

Pinterest is your best friend in this situation. Look at general ideas for small spaces first but also check out the ikea hacks, storage ideas, chairs, desks, drawing ideas etc.

Im so jealous. envy

NiceWineDow Mon 20-Jul-15 18:44:51

Headless, have been on pinterest all day! Have pinned a million things! I'm so indecisive though. And the chair - I love this Chesterfield style love seat, but think it'll be too big for the space. All the others look, I dunno, uncomfortable? But I could be wrong. I can't decide!

NiceWineDow Tue 21-Jul-15 10:14:19

Bump smile

Anyone have any recommendations for a comfy chair which doesn't take up too much room?

MarchLikeAnAnt Tue 21-Jul-15 10:18:59

Why not buy/ make a chair with built in bookcases? Like a cube iykwim. You could have an easel that pulls out from the wall.

NiceWineDow Tue 21-Jul-15 10:56:52

Well now! That sounds splendid.

I have no idea how I would create something like that, or to buy something like that without it being very expensive - but I love that type of thinking. I will think on that idea. Thank you

MarchLikeAnAnt Tue 21-Jul-15 11:07:16

It's actually very easy to build a chair like that if you use IKEA hacks (you don't have to use IKEA furniture), shouldn't cost more than £40. The easel just requires a hook and a door hinge so will cost about £5 (not including the easel itself).

NiceWineDow Tue 21-Jul-15 11:09:52

I'm useless at making stuff, I wouldn't know where to start confused...

OnlyLovers Tue 21-Jul-15 11:42:21

Speaking of IKEA, I think they're very good at small-space living and storage. Maybe go to one to get some ideas, if not necessarily buy anything?

Although I'll bet they'll have some nice, and clever, space-saving stuff.

Sleepybeanbump Tue 21-Jul-15 11:49:59

Those ikea Poang (sp?) chairs are V comfy.

juneau Tue 21-Jul-15 12:45:00

I would get built-in floor-ceiling bookshelves. They aren't that expensive if you find a local carpenter/joiner who can make them in MDF. If you paint them they look great once all your books are on the shelves. I was worried that they might look cheap and nasty, but they look really nice.

Also, if your books have been in boxes, don't underestimate how many you have and how much shelf space you need. Between me and my DH (and after a massive pre-move clear out), we managed to fill 38 bookshelves' worth!

One more thing - make sure you get a proper reading light to go with your shelves and easy chair!

NiceWineDow Tue 21-Jul-15 13:39:20

Have had a look on Ikea and nothing sprang out at me...

I think I am so excited about this little project and I have all these ideas of grandeur and uniqueness but in reality all I need is a normal bookshelf, a comfy chair and a reading light blush

I really, really like the idea of built in floor-ceiling bookshelves all along the back wall. I will have a look at local carpenters.

I have around 4 huge suitcases in storage, plus the books I have accumulated since putting them in storage (I have now got a full 4 shelves in my bedroom) - its a lot of books!

I just cannot wait to get them all back out and be able to breathe in the book smell grin

janetandroysdaughter Tue 21-Jul-15 13:41:30

I have a space about that size. One wall is floor to ceiling books, the other is a massive pinboard for maps, images, inspiration. There's a table in front of the pinboard wall with a few gorgeous things on it, like a hand thrown pot made by a friend with an orchid in given to me by DS1, and a painted enamel jug for watering the orchid, given by DS2. Stack of notebooks, IKEA lamp and tiny Persian rug. It lacks a gorgeous snuggly chair but the one I use is fine.

NiceWineDow Tue 21-Jul-15 13:51:15

ooh a lovely table for lovely things. Lovely! Also good for somewhere to put book down / rest a cold drink / plate of sarnies. Yes, a little table is a definite.

Persian rug sounds divine.

So ideally I would want wall to ceiling bookshelves along one wall. Other wall has a big window - I can get the chair underneath that. I am thinking I might paint a large landscape on canvas and hang it on the remaining wall, with a small table underneath it.

I am going to look at persian rugs now. And persian style lamps. smile

redshoeblueshoe Tue 21-Jul-15 15:28:24

It sounds lovely - I think I should clear the box room and put all my books in there, with a comfy chair - then I'll be all ready for winter

NiceWineDow Tue 21-Jul-15 15:33:36

redshoe - do it!!!

When I realised that a space in my living room was going to become free - and I thought about what I could do with it - and my mum suggested a reading snug - I thought I'd died and gone to heaven. I am stupidly happy about the prospect of a reading snug.

janetandroysdaughter Tue 21-Jul-15 15:50:00

I am stupidly happy about your reading snug too. Every home should have one! Hope it goes well.

OnlyLovers Tue 21-Jul-15 16:06:45

Re IKEA, I meant more go and look around the showroom for inspiration; they are very clever about the way they put things together sometimes.

I used a v good carpenter, albeit a few years ago, to put in a bespoke built-in wardrobe/cupboard. Where are you? He is in London (but possibly covers more of the south-east too) if that's any good.

HowD Tue 21-Jul-15 16:13:12

Do Ikea still do those tables that hinge from the wall? You could hack it to tilt to paint/draw.

NiceWineDow Tue 21-Jul-15 16:16:41

Only - I live in London smile - PM me please!!

HowD - hmm, that sounds like a good space saving tip. Will think on that, thanks

OnlyLovers Tue 21-Jul-15 18:43:06

Have PMd.

NiceWineDow Tue 21-Jul-15 19:48:34

Thanks Only. Will check him out

drinkscabinet Tue 21-Jul-15 19:52:43

I guess we have the equivalent in our sitting room, bookcase, chair, table, lamp, beautiful stereo for listening to Radio 4. Our chair is beautiful (it's an Eames rocker) but not actually very comfortable for reading in. Although my preferred reading position is sprawled across the floor so not sure there's a chair that can accomodate that.

If you've got a big window then any pictures you put up might fade, just bear that in mind. What's below the window, is there room for a low bookcase there as well, that would give you a surface for a lamp, drink, ornaments as well.

Where is the plug for the lamp/radio etc? We've got little triangular gaps in the back corners of some of our bookcases so that plugs and wires can go down them to the plug on the wall behind so the bookcase looks neater from the front.

NiceWineDow Tue 21-Jul-15 19:56:01

Drinks, very good point about plug socket. Will have to bear it in mind as the bookcase will be covering it.

Also, that's an idea about getting a low bookcase under the window. Which can be used for a table. Or I could put some cushions on it and use it as a sort of window seat

MadeMan Tue 21-Jul-15 21:35:26

"I just cannot wait to get them all back out and be able to breathe in the book smell."

Yes, yes, you don't get this with e-books. As well as the smell, I love the sound of books if you 'clap' them together, or when loading them up on a bookcase.

The Guardian website used to have pictures of writer's rooms which could perhaps be used for ideas if they are still on there.

What a lovely thread. You will have to post pictures of your finished reading snug! smile

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