Rewatching the new Beauty and the Beast film with Tori the other day got me daydreaming about my prefect book space for the millionth time. Obviously the full dream is to magically have the library from the film in my house but I fear that may be a little impractical given that I think my whole house would fit in that one room…
HOWEVER, I am a well-practiced daydreamer and I don’t like to let little things like reality and actual available space stifle my imaginings, especially when it comes to books. So, with that in mind I did a little window shopping with Arhaus to plan for my imaginary Castle Library which is, of course, my ideal Book Nook.
Before we go any further, let me paint the room for you – at one end is an enormous bay window looking out towards some woodland, draped with thick, velvety curtains, on one wall there is a fireplace with a dark wooden mantlepiece and a fire all set and ready to be lit in the evening when it gets cooler, and there’s a hidden stereo system built in to the walls ready to add whatever soundtrack is required from your book of choice that day.
Got all that in your mind? Excellent. Now for some furniture:
We need bookshelves, obviously, and my dream library has always been in the style of the manor houses and National Trust properties I have visited over the years. So something classic and stylish like the pieces below would be my choice. I find warm, dark coloured wood comforting and it offsets the colours of books beautifully, and look! That second one has an actual ladder to reach the top shelves! I could have real Belle moments!
Right, so we have lined the walls with bookshelves – now fill them with all different kinds of books:
We need an armchair to curl up in, right in the middle of the bay window, so we can enjoy the sunshine, gaze out into the woods and lose ourselves in a book. It needs to be nice and wide, so you can tuck your legs up if you want to, and comfy so that if you get warm and cosy enough to fall asleep, you won’t wake up with back ache.
I think one of these might do the trick (although I might swap the cushion covers for something with a bookish quote or two on):
When the sun sets and the curtains are drawn, we need somewhere to sit by the fire and carry on reading. I think this should be a less solitary setting – space for friends to join you and read companionably or chat about what to read next. It requires a sofa, a coffee table and some sort of lighting…
I adore the curved shape of this sofa – there’s lots of space if you want it, but it also looks perfect for snuggling up whilst you enjoy each other’s company and read into the night. (I could have chosen about five of the Arhaus sectional sofas, they’re all so lovely! Sometimes window shopping is HARD!)
Between the sofa and the fire needs to be a set of nesting tables like this – perfect for if someone wants to pull a surface closer to rest a drink on without having to lean forward off the sofa every time. Too many drinks go undrunk because they are too far away to reach without interrupting the flow of a book!
As romantic as reading by firelight sounds, I’ve done it and it does make your eyes tired after a while so I think there needs to be a lamp on the table for when it gets a bit too dark. I love this candelabra style lamp purely because it invokes proper old-school reading room/library vibes. Except it has lightbulbs and therefore provides a decent amount of light without you having to sit so close to it that your book becomes a fire hazard.
So there you go – my dream book nook. Except that really it’s just Belle’s Library because I have no idea how to come up with a better book nook than that. All I need now is a castle and I can stop window shopping and start actual shopping…
Disclaimer: I received no compensation from Arhaus in return for this post. I joined in because window shopping for my dream library is a favourite past-time and any excuse to discover potential new things to add to it is a bonus!