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Celebrating Paperback Book Day: Inspiring Décor Ideas for Passionate Readers

Outpaced by phablets, tablets, e-readers, and laptops, the authentic reading experience is losing ground. We’re gradually adapting to an all-digital era and most of us are already hooked on the high-tech gear around us. Still, there’s something unique about the experience of reading a paperback classic that no electronic device could replace.

As we celebrate Paperback Book Day on July 30, we want to make a tribute to old-fashioned books and encourage a comeback to the classic reading experience. One of the best ways to get into a relaxed reading mood is to set up a special space in your home where you can enjoy some quiet “me time” . Of course, you can read anywhere, but making a cozy reading nook in a secluded place really is worthwhile.

When renting an apartment, you need to check first with your landlord what you can and cannot do in terms of redecorating. As a renter, you might not be able to build an entire library in the living room, nor drive holes through the walls for bookshelves. Still, a cozy and inspiring window nook or a themed reading corner is well within your reach!

Check out these inspiring apartment decorating tips and ideas, guaranteed to get you into the old-school reading mood:

Setting up a reading corner: the basics

To completely relax and lose yourself in your book, you need to get as comfy as possible. Put an ottoman by a sofa or a large armchair in order to stretch your legs. The colors and designs of the fabrics should match the rest of the room, or chime with your personality. Decorate your new corner in style with patterned pillows and soft blankets to ensure maximum comfort. The setup is completed with a good light source, such as a tall lampstand or large nearby windows. You may also want a small table, not just to keep your books on but also a cup of herbal tea!

Cozy reading nook, image via A Thoughtful Place Blog
Cozy reading nook, image via A Thoughtful Place Blog

Windows, natural light, and scenery

Create an appealing reading corner next to a big window in your apartment. Natural light and beautiful landscape are soothing to the eyes and soul, and even a mundane view can give you food for thought. Some apartments come with large windowsills built in. These can be easily converted into reading nooks just by adding poufs and pillows, green plants, candles, and sheepskin rugs.

Reading corner next to a window, image via Freshome
Reading corner next to a window, image via Freshome

Healthy choices: reading outdoors

If you’re renting an apartment equipped with a terrace or a private balcony, then use it wisely, hopefully for more than extra storage space. Minimalistic furnishings, such as a small bench and a hip table, are usually enough if the place is tiny, as long as you work on other decorating details. Style your balcony with flowers and plants. Light the place properly so you can also enjoy cozy evenings cuddled under a blanket while reading your favorite novel. Make sure though that you can quickly remove rugs and pillows in case of bad weather. Now, breathe in the fresh air and start reading!

Simple decor ideas for reading on your balcony, image via Volgende Halte
Simple decor ideas for reading on your balcony, image via Volgende Halte

Make use of unusual or small spaces

Many lofts or 2-level units have a few narrow or awkward spaces unsuitable for daily use. However, these can be transformed into ideal getaways for unwinding and reading a good book. Get creative and explore the endless possibilities of decorating your new hideaway. It might be as simple as throwing a thick carpet or a colorful mattress on the floor, extra pillows, maybe wall decals, and some funky LED lights. Give your nook a new edge by daring to use bold colors and interesting fabrics.

Reading hideaway under the stairs, image via Jewel Pie
Reading hideaway under the stairs, image via Jewel Pie

Introduce kids to the magic world of books

We all want our children to love reading and to form a strong relationship with books from an early age. If we want them to grow up surrounded by books then creating a special and fun place, where they can get lost in the world of adventures, is a must. No matter how small or crowded your rental is, declutter a corner and use it for this higher purpose. Craft the reading nook according to your child’s interests. Make sure it is well lit, that there are always good books around, and that it’s an enjoyable place to be. Kids might love this corner so much that they’ll also want to play, sleep, or snack here.

DYI reading nook of pallets, image via Shelterness
DYI reading nook of pallets, image via Shelterness

The Library – an evergreen community amenity

Property managers strive to offer their residents a wide range of in-unit and community amenities. While community libraries and dedicated reading rooms are not that popular, some apartment block owners have thought about this and have created serene environments ready to receive avid readers. So next time you’re looking for an apartment for rent, add “library” to your amenities must-have checklist. Besides the free books, you can also enjoy the company of other people who share the same reading interests.

Community library at The Horizon at Fleetwood apartments, Mount Vernon, image via RentCafe
Community library at The Horizon at Fleetwood apartments, Mount Vernon, image via RentCafe

Have you set up your own reading nook yet? If so, tell us what you’re reading right now. Let’s all spread love for paperback books, on Paperback Book Day!

Nicky Iudean
Nicky is a Senior Communications Specialist for RENTCafé.com, where she researches and writes about real estate, interior design, and all things that spark renters’ interests. She is also your go-to person for content collaborations. Nicky double majored in Marketing and Applied Economics and holds a master's degree in Marketing Strategies and Policies. You can reach her via email at

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