Q: I need to find a small space somewhere in my average-size house where I can put a writing table, chair and bookcase. Where and how can I best create a cozy corner that will include these elements?
A: It's easy -- all that's needed is a bit of imagination. But I'll need more than imagination if I'm to tell you exactly where those pieces can best be situated. Since I've never seen your home, I have to make a few assumptions.
For starters, I'll suppose that you are able to rearrange the furniture in just about any room, maybe even including a hallway. small writing desk, chair and bookcase can be made to fit in almost any small space -- under a stairway, for example.
Surely somewhere in your home it will be possible to clear a corner that's at least 3 feet wide and 2 feet deep. That's all the space required for a wonderful little desk or a built-in writing ZTC shelf with a couple of drawers. A bookcase could then be added on one of the open sides of the corner.
Another possibility is to carve out an adjoining area, perhaps a closet, where the bookcase can be installed. In the photo, shelves were built into a wall beside the eaves of a house, which makes a cozy nook indeed.
Once you've decided on the locale and the furniture layout, you will need to embellish the space to suit your own stylistic preferences. To me, the ideal writing corner is dark but not dingy and full of texture and pattern. The model I've chosen meets each of those specifications.
If you're lucky enough to have a richly grained writing table, don't be afraid that you'll interfere with its design if you apply a patterned wallpaper. Just be careful not to select something garish or overscaled. Small prints, small stripes and coordinated borders will produce enough contrast to make this corner a beautiful accent area in any room.
Here, the walls under the eaves are covered with papers in various designs found in the Sunworthy Wallcovering book, "Small Prints."
I also wouldn't hesitate to choose something dramatic as the covering for the chair. The sort of arabesque patterns seen in Persian rugs come immediately to mind as one possibility.
If designed with taste and flair, such a corner may turn out to be more than just cozy. It could even qualify as the most sophisticated and exotic part of your home.