Reading Corner

Santa brought a wonderful gift for the kids this year: a reading corner. He and I have been secretly working together since summer to turn the idea into reality. It evolved a little from then till now, but it came together perfectly.

The best part? It only cost about $30, roughly half of that cost being paint.

Reading corner

How did I put it together for just $35?

The frame is a simple modification of this plan. It’s made of 2 X 4’s and 1 X 6’s we had on hand from previous projects. The paint for the frame cost $14, though I only used about half of it. It is very, very sturdy. I think our whole family could sit on it at once.

A crib mattress sits in the frame. All of our kids are out of the crib now, so we can start upcycling the pieces! The quilt over the mattress is a family heirloom, handed down from my grandmother. The mattress covering can be changed anytime.


There are 3 pillows on top of the mattress. A body pillow serves as a backrest, and there are 2 decorative pillows for added comfort. The body pillow has served quite a few needs over the years, but being part of the reading nook will certainly be the most fun use it’s had. The pink latch hook pillow was something my sister made in high school that has remained in the family for many years. The third pillow cost $4. It is made with a Hollie Hobbie embroidery on top and backed with a piece of denim recycled from an old dress.

The lamp is something my parents were going to throw out, but the style is perfect for the reading corner. The base tucks underneath, fitting into a tiny space, and the lamp lights with a pull string, making it easy for a child to turn on and off.


The letters on the wall are white MDF letters from Joanns. I used Mod Podge to affix pages of a book on top of them. Total cost for letters and book: $9.25.


The shelves are another piece of recycled decor. I switched up the hardware to essentially hang them upside down, the brackets creating book ends.

The books are all from thrift stores and garage sales and roughly cost about $3.


I was able to find an art piece to add to the reading nook after Christmas. It was $5 from the thrift store. It isn’t exactly what I was looking for, but it really brings the space together.

And there you have it. A reading nook for about $35.

I wasn’t sure if the kids would be excited, or if perhaps they expected to get a big toy from Santa. But they loved it. My oldest, the reader, has already spent many hours over the last couple of days in it, playing games on the Kindle, and of course reading.

I’m 100% positive it was many hours of brainstorming and assembly well spent.

Settled in – starting a book she got for Christmas. She finished the book the next day.
Room for two.
One more view, all pulled together in the daylight.

All in all, the reading corner is perfect, and I can see my kids using it for many years to come.


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