The Middle English word “nook” originated around 1250. That’s quite a long time for an unusual word to linger in the English language, considering that so many others are no longer used, or have simply been forgotten. It could be due to its original meaning; which is “a corner”. But, it’s not only a corner of a room… it’s more. It can mean any secluded or even obscure corner. That makes the entire idea of a nook much more tantalizing. To further its flexibility and subtlety, it also can be used to mean a small recess or any sheltered or remote spot. No wonder that it has retained its popularity for several centuries.
Whatever the spot, it is one that is ideal for enjoying something in a special place designed for just that. Perhaps that is why nooks have caught imaginations and fulfilled desires for a treasured place to relax, read, hide away, or spend cherished time with friends. Nooks can be found near windows, under stairs, inside closets, or specially created from a section of awkward space previously unused. Finding just the right use for that difficult space can become an adventure, and that is part of the nook’s frustration. It is also part of its magic.
Bay Window Breakfast Nook
In the past, homes were built with formal dining rooms for guests and a smaller space next to the kitchen for the family. Breakfast nooks were popular because it was easy to serve meals and clean up the small space afterward due to their proximity to the kitchen. As family or great rooms became more popular along with casual living and entertaining, breakfast nooks were not found as often in new home construction. But they have had a resurgence in popularity and are often a focal point for beautiful carpentry and stylish vintage design. This beautiful bay window breakfast nook includes elements of design from the generations before and after the 1950s. Lovely carpentry painted white forms the seats and frames the window. A contemporary table is reminiscent of a mid-century modern diner and easily moved. The fabrics on the seat cushions and pillows are contemporary patterns in eye-catching blues and greens, making a comfortable area to eat and visit.
Large and Cozy Breakfast Nook
This cozy nook reaches restaurant proportions while retaining a welcome home attitude. The built-in seating features storage underneath, and the backs are high and completely upholstered for a comfortable stay. A long farm table and complementary bench are placed opposite to add seating space. Both pieces feature an attractive X design. Overhead, pendant lights with a hint of gold shimmer provide extra lighting and shelves display treasured serving pieces and colorful table linens. The adjacent window is high to shelter the nook from view and control sunlight, while the side door allows convenient access.
Inviting Traditional Reading Nook
An elegant reading nook tucked into this home’s corner invites anyone to curl up with a good book for a while. The arched doorway features fine molding, as does the nook’s interior ceiling and bench. The oval window begs for a peek outside while the window behind the bench has the perfect white patterned shade to lower for privacy. Cherished items on display liven the space with interest and color.
Splendid Wood Reading Nook
A straight forward design made with warm medium toned woods is tucked into the wall. The natural grain of the wood is left clear, without paint, and complements the lovely hardwood flooring of the room. The floral-patterned fabric on the bench is upholstered without tufts, and this echoes the clean lines of the woodwork surrounding the face of the nook. There are bright spring green throw pillows for relaxing and plenty of books easy to reach in the built-in bookcase. A landscape painting adds more soothing green hues, and pot lights built into the wood plank ceiling offer extra reading light.
Rosy Pink Bed Nook
Part of the genius of this space is that it has all the elements of Victorian style and color without any extra fussiness. The toile wall covering and draw drapes are a pretty, rose pink and cream. The drapes attach to a simple natural wood pole with matching curtain rings. The bookcase behind the bed is painted in a creamy white to coordinate and the shelves are left open, without doors. Books are easy to find and reach and there is space for favorite keepsakes. Though there are several coordinating rose-colored fabrics on the bed linens and pillows, the overall effect is soft. Warm gold metallic frames add a touch of formality and shine. The hexagon window is covered with an opaque, leaf-adorned material to let the light in, but retain privacy
Blue and Green Bedroom Nook Twins
When two share a room, then twin nooks are perfect. These are color-coordinated, but color distinct, so that each occupant has a unique space. The vibrant teal blue and spring green are found on the area rug and the pillows inside the nooks. When the mood strikes, a handy conversation hole is situated between the two separate spaces. The remaining furnishings include a bright blue curtain at the large picture window, and two personalized chairs. A white hanging basket chair is waiting for someone to swing there. The walls and flooring are bright white to agree with the open, uncluttered and happy design.
Contemporary Adult Bed Nook
In this stylish, nearly Zen apartment, a corner nook has been built in for the bed and a few shelves added inside for books and other personal items. Handy pendant lights provide lighting at a lowered height for the bed, which rests on the platforms rising above the main apartment floor. Sliding opaque doors can close to shield the space from view. The enclosure features wood stained in a neutral light taupe. Bed linens are neutral in color, as are the bookcase shelves. But, bright circles of colors fill one accent wall behind the shelves, and these provide a festive air to the nook. It is a place for retreat, but certainly not boring.
Under the Stairs Entrance Nook
Once an empty under the stairs space, and located right at the entrance to this home, the owners lived with it until they discovered the way to personalize it perfectly. They filled the previously awkward emptiness with a beloved collection of globes, a perfect antique library card file, objects of art which give a glimpse of the owners’ personalities, and a bench area for putting on and taking off shoes and convenient visiting. It’s an inspirational way of creating a highly personalized nook which anyone can make.
Under the Stairs Kids Playhouse
What youngsters wouldn’t enjoy this fairy tale cottage built under the stairs? It’s dressed for the holidays, but it has all the cottage flair for use the rest of the year. With a double Dutch door to enter, any height can access this nook, and certainly converse over the half-opened doorway. There is a cute window box with flowers and the shutters open to reveal a bit of Tirolian colors. The exterior features randomly overlapped, plain wood shingles that lend to the forest cottage style. The roof beams, painted in white to match the interior, follow the stairway. The interior is covered with soft carpeting and the lights are on inside, ready for playtime.
The Wine Bar Nook
Nook ideas don’t stop at places to read, rest, or play. Nooks can be great places to create a wine bar for at home entertaining. The custom cherry wood cabinetry, marble countertop, under counter fridge, pretty backsplash and handy sink with elegant faucet are the details which make this wine nook very stylish indeed. The windowed cabinet drawers display glimmering stemware inside. It is ready for casual entertaining, but it is a far cry from a man-cave home bar. Of course, any gentleman would enjoy this space. It has just the design features it needs to be useful and efficient, and it is a traditional, high style addition, tucked perfectly into the corner.