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Create An Epic DIY Home Reading Room – $100 Room Challenge

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Turn an unused guest room into a warm and cozy DIY home reading room for under $100! 

boho reading room diy

I’m converting my daughter’s old bedroom into a DIY home reading room as part of the $100 Room Challenge hosted by Erin from Lemons, Lavender and Laundry. 

$100 room challenge

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The basic rules of this challenge are you have one month and $100 to update a space in your home. Because there are 5 Wednesdays in September, we get an extra week, which I will totally need!

This challenge couldn’t have come at a better time, as I have a newly empty bedroom. My 24 yo daughter moved into her own apartment a month ago.

If any of you have experienced a child moving out, either for college or an apartment, you know what it’s like. They pretty much take only what they want and leave the rest.

But, they don’t want you to throw any of their stuff out. Nope-you need to save all of those My Little Pony’s and stuffed animals in case they ever want them again. Can you feel my pain?

This is what her bedroom looked like after she moved out:

bedroom before

DIY Home Reading Room Challenges

There are several challenges that I face in this room. The main problem is I’m renting, so I can’t paint or remove the carpet. That’s a big obstacle. 

While I’m normally a fan of blue, the wall color is not my favorite. It’s a cool shade of blue more suited for a nursery. 

Also, the rug is a builder grade berber – not warm and cozy at all. But, I have some big plans to warm this space up and create a peaceful reading room that will also have desk space and book storage.

My 29 yo son is an avid book collector, but he does not have space for his collection. You get where I’m going with this, right?

His books are currently in bins in storage and I really need to get them organized. They not only have sentimental value, but some also have monetary value.

He’s been collecting books since he was about 16 yo, so you can imagine the volume. This reading room makeover is a surprise for my son, as well as a space for me.

I’ve always wanted a library with a wall of book shelves and a comfortable reading nook. A quiet space to unwind at night. 

Especially in these crazy times, we all need a little peace and quiet.

While the room is not large enough for a library, a reading room is the next best thing!

Here are my plans to create a DIY home reading room for under $100. 


mood board reading room



While searching on Pinterest for bookshelf inspiration, I found a great tutorial for wood wall-to-wall shelves from Chris Loves Julia.

I’d like to add a wall of shelves, along with a few bookcases that I already have in the basement.



Comfortable seating is a must in a reading room. Thankfully, I have an egg chair that I’ve been using outside. It’s so unbelievably comfortable and will be the perfect chair for a corner reading nook.

I’ll need to DIY a side table for a morning cup of coffee, or evening glass of wine.

egg chairs


Prior to the stay at home taking effect, I was beginning to enjoy traveling, now that my children are grown. I always purchase a piece of art work from my travels.

They’ve been sitting unframed waiting for the perfect spot. I can’t wait to create a gallery wall with my finds from Nashville, Palm Springs, Cayman Islands and more.

There will definitely be some unique DIY’s to keep costs down. 


A big part of my budget will go towards an area rug, to break up the sea of blue and warm up the room.

I’m going for an eclectic boho feel in this space. I love the golds in this rug and plan to bring in gold accents to highlight this.

boho rug


I have a pair of cream and gold curtains that hung in my old house, that I plan to hang on the one window. They are perfect to pick up the gold in the rug! 


Every room should have some greenery. This will add to the warmth and coziness of the room.

I plan to DIY a hanging window wall shelf that I saw on Etsy:

window shelf



Lighting is a huge issue in this space. There is only a single overhead light and it has to go! I plan to DIY a wood bead chandelier, similar to the wood bead lamp  I made a while back.

It has that boho vibe I’m going for and is inexpensive to make. I’ll also hit up the thrift stores for a floor lamp that I can makeover.

I’m crushing on this curved floor lamp.

floor lamp


My son is a writer and I plan to use this space for blogging as well. Right now I have a combined office/craft room. However, I really need to separate the two.

There is never enough space for all the craft supplies! I’m so excited to build a wood slab desk, with hairpin legs. These were a birthday present from my Dad.

His friend owns a lumber yard, so I am blessed to get some beautiful wood pieces for a song.

This  DIY wood slab coffee table is a favorite project of mine.


wood slab


I already have a gorgeous leather library chair that my sister was getting rid of. This is a great piece to go with the desk. 


leather desk chair



The last, and most challenging, thing on the list is to create a feature wall and cover up some of the blue. The obvious choice is paint, but since that is out, I’m thinking of a removable wallpaper.

I’ve used it in my craft room and kitchen  with success, but the budget may be an issue. Fingers crossed I can keep the expenses down and come up with something for the main wall.


Thankfully, I have plenty of items to finish off the room so I won’t need to use any of the budget on finishing touches.

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Think I can complete this DIY home reading room for $100? I’m a glass half full girl, so I say YES!

Follow along over the next five weeks to see the progress. 

Make sure to check out what all the other participants are working on this month using the links below!


You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

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Erin- Lemons, Lavender, & Laundry

Thursday 10th of September 2020

I think this is our first reading room for this challenge and I absolutely LOVE this idea. What a great way to display books that are currently in storage. You have so many amazing ideas for this room. Can't wait to see how this turns out!

Decorate and More with Tip

Tuesday 8th of September 2020

You had me at BOHO. This is going to look amazing!


Saturday 5th of September 2020

I love all your choices the mood board is amazing.Can't wait to see the reveal

Nicki Parrish

Saturday 5th of September 2020

Hi there! I am also working on this challenge with a bathroom makeover. I love your plans for this space, you already have so many wonderful elements to include!


Friday 4th of September 2020

As an empty nester myself I can totally understand the desire to create that quiet reading space. And why not use all the rooms in our home! I especially cannot wait to see this hanging shelf! It all sounds like a great plan.

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