Lighting for Your Reading Nook
It’s your secluded getaway. Whether you’re more of a paper page turner or tablet swiper, there are few ways to ensure your reading nook has the right light. Not only is it essential to creating an inviting ambiance, it’s also important to ensure your eyes are safe from strain while reading.
Picking the Right Lights
Before choosing lights for your nook, there are a few things to consider. For example, if you primarily use the space to read on an electronic device (especially ones that are backlit) such as a first generation e-reader, Kindle Fire, or iPad, you will need to position your lights so that glare is not an issue. For example, position lights more to the sides-- instead of the center—of your reading nook. This way the overhead lighting will not cause your screen to glare.
If your nook is near a window as opposed to a darker space such as a transformed closet, the amount of artificial light needed to illuminate the area will be significantly different. In a darker reading nook, you may consider using a desk lamp, especially for paperbacks and first generation e-readers where you need direct light on the page or screen. Desk lamps typically have swiveling capabilities, allowing you to adjust the direction of the light.
Another factor to consider is brightness of light as it relates to the age of your eyes. The older we get, the more light we’re going to need. According to Dr. Eleanor Faye director of the Lighthouse for the Blind Low Vision Service, the eye needs 1% more light per year to read efficiently.
Chandeliers are an automatic attention grabber, but adding one to your reading nook makes for an exceptional piece de resistance. There are countless styles to choose from. Before committing, you should measure your space carefully. Hitting your head on a glass fixture in the middle of the climatic conflict isn’t exactly relaxing, so keep the chandelier high. Most reading nooks are small so try choosing a chandelier that doesn’t crowd the space. You could go with a single bulb plug in style chandelier that’s surrounded by crystals. The crystals are able to reflect light emitted from the bulb, providing you with more illumination.
LED Tape Lights
If your reading nook is equipped with shelves, you may want to consider installing tape lights. Flexible and easy to use, tape lights come in a variety of colors. The adhesive back allows you to place the strips in different locations. Try adding strips to the bottom of dark shelves to help highlight and draw attention to your beloved books. Since the LED tape lights use very little energy, books will not be damaged from heat, even in enclosed spaces. The lights use a LED driver, and can easily be hardwired to a wall switch so that they will not interfere with your overhead lighting.
In your window-equipped reading nook, you may not want to use a lot of artificial lighting. Consider incorporating battery operated string lights into the space. You can drape a string from the ceiling or, around the arch of your enclosed nook. As an added bonus, if you like to switch between hard backs and e-readers, string lights offer just enough light to be useful in either scenario.
Whatever type of light you decide to use for your nook remember your eyes will automatically let you know if it’s too dim, too bright, or just right. Don’t forget the snacks! Have any additional tips on lighting your reading nook? Feel free to drop us a line in the comments section below. You could also send us a message on Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, LinkedIn, or Pinterest!