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While nooks can be a fun design flourish, it’s sometimes hard to know how to put them to good use. Thankfully, with a bit of creativity and hard work, you can transform a quirky alcove or annex into a chic and functional space. Here are 10 ways to turn an unused nook into a practical and picturesque area.
1. Home Office
Over the past few years, many employees have swapped office cubicles for home offices — and the trend of remote work is still a way of life for a large percentage of the population. In fact, according to one recent study, nearly six in 10 Americans (58%) say they can work from home at least one day a week.
If you’re part of the work-from-home crowd, making a designated home office can provide some much-needed separation between your work and home life. To turn a nook into a work-from-home zone, simply set up a desk and chair, hang up some artwork and add a plant or two for visual variety. And don’t forget to make sure that you have a nice background for all those inevitable Zoom calls!
2. Coffee Station
Give Starbucks a run for its money by creating your very own coffee station. Start by installing a floating countertop (or a rolling kitchen cart if you prefer a more portable option). Next, add all of your coffee-making must-haves (such as drip coffee makers, milk frothers and cute mugs) to your makeshift coffee bar. You can complete the look with some fun coffee-themed wall hangings. We guarantee that you’ll be much more excited to wake up in the morning when you have this cute at-home coffee station waiting for you.
3. Reading Area
If you always seem to have your nose in a book, why not turn your unused alcove into a reading nook or home library? Start by investing in a comfortable chair or sofa so you can sink into it for hours at a time. Next, top it with some cozy throw blankets so you can cuddle up with a blanket and a good book. You might also want to consider adding a side table with a good lamp or reading light. And if you have extra space, you can also add a bookshelf so you can keep some of your tried-and-true favorites at arm’s length for maximum convenience.
4. Home Bar
Cheers to the weekend (without breaking the bank) by making your own at-home bar. Start by setting up a bar cart in your alcove and then hanging a few shelves over it so you can show off any extra glassware or bottles of booze. After you add all of your glasses and accessories to the bar cart, top it with flowers, plants, or knick-knacks to tie the look together. Creating your own bar not only allows you to opt for a classy night in. You’ll also have the perfect spot to entertain family and friends whenever they come over.
5. Art Studio
If you dream of being the next Picasso (or simply want a private spot to work on your art pieces), you can turn the nook into an art studio. Depending on what type of art you make, start by placing an easel or canvas in the corner of the nook. Next, you can hang some shelves and place your paint, brushes and other art supplies within arm’s reach. For some added inspiration, hang a few of your finished pieces overhead. Of course, the sky’s the limit when it comes to customizing your nook. If you’re not into art, you can customize the space to suit any of your other hobbies—from a knitting nook to a writing station.
6. Entertainment Center
Bring the magic of the movies into your home by designing an entertainment center. Start by adding a comfortable couch (or some bucket seats) and a large TV. Next, consider adding a few fun movie details, like a popcorn maker or some of your favorite movie posters. All that’s left to do is choose a movie, dim the lights and enjoy the evening. If you’re more of a gamer, you can set up your video game playing station there instead.
7. Sleeping Area
Studio apartments are a great choice for people who don’t need a lot of space, but sometimes you just need a little extra privacy. To solve this problem, you can move your bed into the nook. You can then personalize the space by stringing up some lights or adding some artwork. For even more separation, consider adding a partition or curtains so your bedroom area is hidden from the rest of the apartment.
8. Glam Station
If you have an empty nook in the bathroom, why not create your very own glam station? Start by purchasing a vanity with a lighted mirror, and then invest in whatever other tools and products you need to take your morning routine from bleh to bling. For example, you could buy some supplies to create your own Dry Bar-esque blowout station or get some makeup supplies to rival your favorite makeup bar. If you have kids, this just might become their favorite new play spot.
9. Yoga Studio
Looking for a place to practice yoga outside of class? Add some rugs and a yoga mat to your alcove, and voila — you’ve invented your very own at-home yoga studio. To make the area feel truly Zen, you can play soft music, spritz some eucalyptus oil, and set up a laptop so you can follow along with a yoga video from one of your favorite instructors. If you’d rather have a gym setup, you can purchase some weights and barbells and make your own gym setup.
10. Breakfast Bar
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and you can make sure it starts out on the right note by designing a breakfast bar. Simply add a cute table or picnic table, a few chairs and your favorite decor to turn an underutilized area into a beloved gathering spot. If you’re looking for other kitchen nook ideas, you can make a sous chef station to simplify dinner prep or a dessert bar so you can whip up sugary confections at the drop of a hat.