HGTV's Hilary Farr Says These Two Things Are Essential When Designing A Cozy Nook

Few things say relaxation quite like a little reading nook. However, as "Love It or List It" star, Hilary Farr explained on her eponymous blog, there are a few things that can make or break the space. From the right lighting to a cozy seat, the perfect reading nook is all about intentionality. 

Back in 2019, Farr shared that the number one thing to prioritize in a reading nook was that it should lend itself to cozying up. "There's nothing more important than creating a comfortable spot to turn the pages," she explained. It makes sense, then, that one of her non-negotiables for the space was a great seat. For the HGTV star, that was an armchair. However, if you're more partial to something like a beanbag (grab one off Amazon for $89.99), that works, too. Same goes with a bench — your reading nook should include the kind of seating you like best. 

Outside of the seat itself, think about anything that makes you feel the most comfortable. That might mean having a basket of blankets close by, additional cushions, or even an ottoman or footstool to prop your feet up as you read. Another suggestion? Have a small table in the space. This could be used for a cup of tea or coffee — or, as Farr joked in her blog, wine. 

The right lighting makes the space

Aside from the chair, Hilary Farr's other non-negotiable for the perfect reading nook is good lighting. From a practical standpoint, that makes sense. After all, the last thing you want to do while reading is strain your eyes. That said, you also don't want to be in such a brightly lit spot that it becomes difficult to relax. 

One great option when it comes to reading nook lighting is a dimmable floor lamp. This way you'll be able to position the light directly onto the pages as you read. That's also a good thing to keep in mind if your nook is in your bedroom and you share the space with someone else. These don't need to be particularly expensive, either. Amazon stocks one option that comes in a variety of colors, starting at $49.99 and going up to $59.99. 

If you don't have a ton of space to put a floor lamp, you could also go with sconces. Like the floor lamp, these are a great way to provide the light you need without completely illuminating the rest of your room. The great thing is, if the space you're using as your nook doesn't already have light fixtures, Amazon stocks a variety of battery-operated options, many under $100. 

Your nook should be a tech-free zone

Hilary Farr may be particular about the things she wants to have in her reading nook, but she's just as intentional about the things she doesn't. As she wrote on her blog, "I'm all about breaking rules when it comes to design, but I do hold one hard and fast. My reading zone is distraction-free. That means the phones, tablet and all other electronic devices are on silent."

Ideally, don't bring your tech into the nook at all so that you can enjoy the space as a fully unplugged zone. That can be easier said than done if you're reading an e-book on a tablet, for instance. In that case, be sure to completely disable any notifications. You don't want to be sidetracked from the plot by constant alerts — especially not in the nook you've dedicated to completely unwinding. 

Ultimately, your reading nook is your haven, so whatever you think will add to your experience should have a place in it, be that candles, cushions, or a cup of tea. As for anything you think may distract you, keep it out. This is a space for you, your book, and peace of mind — whatever that may mean for you.