Today I’m so excited to be sharing how our DIY reading nook with planked walls came to life. What I love most about our little nest is that it’s unique. Coming from a cookie-cutter home in the suburbs, we are soooo thankful for a bit of character and charm. One of its coolest features is lots of alcoves–we have one on the main level and another in our basement (we turned that one into an indoor playhouse for our kiddos). And while they can be a bit of a challenge, I see so much potential in these empty spots. For this one I brainstormed on a few things and eventually came up with the idea of transforming it into a cozy reading nook. I’ve always dreamed of having a reading nook, but never even imagined that I might actually have one. So when it finally seemed within reach, I couldn’t wait to start. We had been in the house all of two weeks when I wanted to tackle this project. Yes, I’m not the most patient person. Since we were still knee-deep in moving boxes, I recruited the help of my father-in-law. He is amazing when it comes to stuff like this and was eager to help. All the credit goes to him!
This is the best before shot I could find. Like I said, we had only been in the house a couple weeks and I wasn’t taking many photos. BUT you get the idea. It was basically an empty alcove about the size of a coat closet.
The first step is building a basic frame for the bench. Use a second layer of 2x4s to make a recessed area for the bench lid to sit on, then it’s nice and level on top. If you want storage for all the things (like we did) make sure to leave it open on the inside.
We went with simple beadboard on the front and wide trim on the top and edges.
Here’s the finished product (along with a planked wall!) I also added in little corbels and an antique lantern just to spruce it up a bit.
I absolutely love it. We get so many comments and questions on it when people come into our home.
I had no idea how hard it would be to find a cushion for this spot. I wanted it to be a perfect fit, so I ended up enlisting the help of a wonderful seamstress who was kind enough to make this cushion for us. It’s stain resistant and very durable. Perfect for all the little people around here and all the things we will surely spill on this baby.
I think it definitely completes our living room and adds such a cozy feel to the entire room.
So there you have it! Who knew an empty little space like this could be so easily transformed into such a cozy spot. Let me know what you think and thanks for stopping by! xoxo