Reading Nook Under the Stairs

When we first looked at this house, I always thought that the open space under the stairs would make the perfect reading nook for the kids. Fast forward three years and I finally made it happen.

Reading Nook Under the Stairs Before

When we bought this house, the lower stairs were open and wrapped in carpet. In fact, the banister was completely different, and completely dangerous for small children, I wrote about the full staircase transformation. This space served as a catch all of toys, random storage boxes and the only space for our large dog’s crate. That dog is crate trained and if left out while we are gone, will destroy a few of the kids toys as retribution. So the crate has to stay put. It’s only been recently that the girls have started playing under here which is what’s motivated me to finally make this space more intentional. And fun.

This post contains some affiliate links – meaning if you click through the links and buy anything, the retailer will pay me a small commission at no additional cost to you! 
Reading Nook before
Reading Nook Under Stairs Before
Reading Nook Before Wide

Reading Nook Under the Stairs During

I’m actually surprised that the carpet was even able to be ripped off of these stairs since there were about 5,729 carpet staples under here. I removed them all, patched, sanded and caulked before I used my favorite primer.

Reading Nook Before Primer

I used leftover navy paint for the walls (mostly SW Naval with a touch of SW Salty Dog from our dining room makeover) and acrylic craft paint for the back of the stairs.

Reading Nook Paint Only

I used these cloud decals and put my kiddos to work. They were so excited to finally be able to help and it took every bit of restraint in my body to no go back and “fix” their cloud placement. It’s so fun to include them in the design and implementation of these house projects, especially in a space that is exclusively for them.

Reading Nook Girls Helping

Since this is a fairly dark space, it needed a light and this wall scone was the perfect size. It wasn’t quite the right gold so I sprayed it with this and copied Nesting With Grace’s Magic Light Trick so that I wouldn’t have to hard wire the light. I used it in our laundry room makeover and it works so well. The rainbow photo holder I found for $2 in the Target Clearance section.

Reading Nook Clouds

Reading Nook Under the Stairs After

I couldn’t be happier with the finished product and the girls absolutely love it. I let Big Nugget pick out what pillows she wanted (all from Home Goods). The rainbow curtain is tulle that I wrapped around a tension rod and tucked under the dog crate – you can see how I made it in this video.

Reading Nook Under Stairs After

No rainbow reading nook is complete without a rainbow unicorn.

Reading Nook After

Big Nugget also picked out this basket to hold her favorite books.

Reading Nook Rainbow

I think both of the girls are happy with their rainbow reading nook and I have a feeling lots of memories will be made under the stairs.

Reading Nook Girls Reading
Rainbow Reading Nook Pinterest

Similar Posts


  1. My kids LOVED their nook under the stairs (they are in their 40’s now)
    You did a great job!
    And Harry Potter would think you are a good mom!!

    1. Thank you! I am one of the only people on the planet who’s never read or seen Harry Potter….but I’m excited for my girls to get old enough and we can read it together.

Comments are closed.