Gillian’s New Book Nook

I’ve shown off my home theatre before, which was a joint project for me and Gillian, and my closet office is designed to be a nerdy haven for me to work in. But until now, I hadn’t been able to give Gillian a space that’s just for her.

I had a reading space set up on the balcony, but that only gets used a couple weeks a year, tops, when the weather is perfect. The problem is we don’t have a huge apartment. There was no room inside to set aside for her. Or so I thought…

Then inspiration struck – we did have room, it’s just that it’s the bedroom.

Our bedroom was not much to look at. Simple and functional, but that’s all. It had a bare bones Ikea mattress frame and a single bookshelf.

We recently acquired two more bookshelves from Gill’s dad (who was clearing out space at his place), but even with the extra shelves, they filled up quickly. It was time for our annual book purge.

Now, before you get in a tizzy over the blasphemy of getting rid of books, you should know our process. Together, we go through all the books, reorganize them by author or genre, and decide if each book falls into one of two categories: a Re-Read or a Trophy. A Trophy is a book that you might not necessarily re-read, but it holds a special place in your heart for whatever reason.

If a book fits neither category, it gets donated or goes to a second-hand bookstore.

Anyway, during this year’s purge, we ended up with a new category – Still To Be Read. Turns out Gill has TONS of books she is planning to read… someday.

So I decided to try something new. I set aside one of our new bookshelves and put all the STBR books there, filling up three shelves, then labelled it “New Arrivals.” The bottom shelves got labelled “Old Returns”

The idea is that when Gill is looking for something to read, she’ll come here first. And any book she finishes that is neither a Trophy nor Re-Read can get stored underneath until the next purge. Time will tell if this works. But the idea kind of gave off a library vibe.

Another thing that had been on my mind of late was the ways adults leave their childhood behind, and how they also hold on to it. I think it’s easier for men to hold on to parts of their childhood than women. Man caves and shrines to nerd-dom are common with men, even celebrated online. Not so much with women. I think there’s more pressure on them to leave that part of themselves behind and “grow up.”

That was when I decided to turn the bedroom into a personal reading haven for Gillian, one that speaks to the girl inside her. One of the biggest influences of her childhood was Anne of Green Gables. She has ALL of L.M. Montgomery’s books, and, having recently read Anne myself, I could see the appeal of the character, both from a child’s and an adult’s perspective.

I then started looking online for book nook ideas. I couldn’t do a complete makeover, but I could at least look for ideas I could work into the bedroom.

And here’s the final result. We got ourselves a new and better bed frame (with a built-in power outlet for charging stuff). I figured some simple things, like display shelves with favourite authors, past and present, would be a nice touch. A bedrest pillow that would make reading in bed more comfortable.

The rest comes down to decor and accents. Fairy lights tied to the main light switch that will provide a bit of whimsy and child-like charm. Pictures and quotes from Anne of Green Gables. Some personal effects here and there.

Even a basket with a cat face on it. Just because.

When Gill came home from work and saw the end result, she was thrilled. I have a feeling a lot of reading will be done here in the future instead of in the living room.

3 comments on “Gillian’s New Book NookAdd yours →

    1. Trust me – she has SIX more bookshelves that I didn’t bother taking pictures of, split between the bedroom and the living room. Even after the purge, four of them are packed to capacity, the others have one free shelf a piece.

  1. You haven’t gone far enough. My while house is a book nook. I’ve been reading most fiction w ebooks. But…not all. My husband hated books & wouldn’t let me keep them inside. He then took my Rubber Made totes of books & put them out if the trailor i bought and left them outside w/o tops. He wanted the totes.. to store aging cow manure. I almost left him. He has since died from diabetes. I’ve still been buying. I never pas abook store, garage sale, library sale, etc. I get a lot of my books thru Alibris tho under new owners the web site is harde to use. My bedroom has 2 6ft wide 8ft tall book cases. Both closets weren’t good for clothes so i ripped fronts off. One has all my office supples stored. The other has all 3 walls w books. My living room’s wall is all bookcases. I have one in my front room. It’s moving as it’s where my birds live and my Cokatoo has been muching on spines. That is all cookbooks. My back entrance way has plant books and handy man books. Then the office has bookshelves. My spare has bedroom my signed first edtions and old first editions but a bought a china cabinet to keep them safer. My craft room has art and craft book and gardening projects. Most of my fictuon i donated to my local library unless they were reread or sentimental books. I read a book a day. I live w no tv and no internet is available here. Have to go out on top of the shed for my generator to get what i can i my phone.
    One place you missed is your headboard. Make one and bolt to wall so if any disaster hapoens they don’t fall on you. I bought one that has the book headboard. Then built shelves to ceiling on top of it. I even have one in the bathroom tho most is storage for to and extra shampoo, soap etc. But one is close enough for journals to keep me ” “entertained” if tied up. Some are actually beautiful old china cabinets. Books go in top but the pic here is antigue Bibles but the bottom is all art supplies. I have never followed the crowd. Had enough of the”perfect house crap” as a kid. I have always made my house about me. I’ve raised and rescued dogs, bookcase on top of my dresser is all dog books, mostly sled dogs as we raised, rescued, and raced sled dogs. Also used them to work w recovering addicts, battered women fleeing partners (batters never think to look for trm on a small very poor reservation) and kids who were teetering on the edge. For the kids, teams, colthes, eqipment, dues and racing costs i paid for. They were paid to work in kennel but they had to stay clean and sober, stay in school, keep their grades up. Some have done really well. A few of the kids didn’t make it. They quit for the lure of drug dealing. But most did ok. Even the ” failures” still treat me w respect., even coming to my defense when someone attacked me a couple if years ago. He fled the area.
    I also tore out my cupboards and replaced w more china cabinets. Real wood and did the same for my clothes. I can see what my choices have and way easier to get things in and out tho undies etc have a dresser. Of course the tops of bookcases are another shelf. I have art work to hang… where. I’m designing and making the frames into doors to protect valuable books from to much light and stray Cokatoos. But kudos to you. House are to be lived in not kept as some showpiece to keep up w anyone. Living in another culture has freed me up to do that. Given me new perspectives.

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