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Reading nook 玄関で読書スペース

2021-03-09 by David


With the new front window in place, I can finally turn to renovating the downstairs. To start with, I decided to build a little reading nook into the oversized entrance hall, since it didn't really serve any purpose. If I later decide to make this a shop or cafe, it could easily be converted to a register/admin space.

▲ 家を買ったときの状態。ほら、非常に広いでしょう?ドアの左側に壊れていた展示窓の収納スペースですが、その壁を外したら小さい部屋は作れそうです。


So this is how the space looked when I bought the house. As you can see, the genkan (entrance hall) is pretty wide, and since in Japan this space is only really used for removing shoes before entering the house proper, it seemed like a waste. The large cupboard in the far corner is in fact the shop-window display area, that the house previously featured. That window exploded in the earthquake in 2016, and I've no desire to keep that area there - instead, knocking out the cupboard walls would let in tons of light.

▲ 真ん中の柱だけをそのまま残した。タイル床の上に2x4とフローリングで新しい床を置きました。そして、柱の左側に手すりを作りました。ハンズマンDIY店からテーブルの脚5本買って、そのまま使いました。


With the cupboard walls removed, the only part I needed to leave in place was this central pillar. So I decided to build a simple railing to the left of it (using table legs from my local DIY store), and have the entrance to a raised area on the right. The new floor was a simple build from 2x4s and some cheap wood flooring.

▲ 手すりを色ステインして、やっと家具が入れる状態になりました。アームチェア(STRANDMON, 24,990円)とライト(OTTAVA, 5,499円)はイケアから買いました。


After the railing had been stained to roughly match the surrounding wood, it was time to add an armchair and a retro-industrial decorative light. Running a new power cable to the middle of the ceiling required removing some of the wall planks to find the connections, but it was so worth it.




▲ 最後に壁を茜色にペイントしてから、床から天井までのシンプルな本棚を作りました。新しい窓を入れたら完成でした。このアームチェアを入れるとちょっと狭くなったけど、一人の読書スペースには最適です。窓から阿蘇さんも見えますので、大満足!


Here's the finished "book nook"! I painted the far wall a vibrant 'madder' red (it's a root used in dyeing, apparently), and contrasted that with a floor-to-ceiling bookcase in natural wood. A pretty simple job, but look at the difference!!


With the new window in place, it's a cosy and bright space for one person to relax and read in the daytime, with a view of the woods and the Aso volcano out of the window. I love it!


Tags: genkan  玄関 


Jay M.
2022-03-26 (Sat) 7:25AM

Amazing! Everything turned out beautifully. All this by yourself? Wonder how long this took.

2022-03-26 (Sat) 11:26AM

Thanks, Jay! The only hard part was the new window, and my neighbour helped me lift that in. After that it was just slow and easy :)

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