Office Build Update, Part II

So now that I have built the wall and door, all that remains is to paint and move in! Yay, Oh happy Day! (Read about that in Part Uno)

I had originally wanted to paint The Office a swoon-worthy dark gray, as I’ve pinned and houzzed. La Princessa of course thought this was such a boring choice. At the ripe age of 11, she considers herself the authority on all things stylish and Teal, so she doesn’t quite get the finer points of neutral palettes just yet. I did end up painting a teal-adjacent color by complete accident though. As I said in the previous post, I have been without my wheels, leaving me with no way to make gratuitous trips to the home improvement store. I had several cans of paint hanging around in the basement, so I thought I’d get creative and mix my own paint.

Let me just say up front that I did pass my color theory class in college but color still thoroughly confounds me. I still get my tertiary and quarternary colors mixed up with my hues, tints and bases. Somehow, I mixed up a green with a lot of yellow in it, with a very vivid blue, and somehow came up with this gorgeous color that I wasn’t so sure about at first, but now absolutely love.

May I present to you, my new office space!


Here is my 5cent tour as the room currently is. I am still putting on the finishing touches. The glamour shots come later, after I solve the mess o’wire problems.

My door (can you tell I am so proud of my door hanging skills?) The wire shelving thingy hanging on it was rescued from the depths of my basement after a few years of inactivity. It provides more storage for little tools. I have a small project planned for it in the next couple of days. The door itself could also use a little bit of prettying up, like eyeliner for your eyes…


Immediately inside the door: This Billy has been with me since our Norfolk VA days before IKEA decided to change its dimensions. I have since replaced the cardboard backing with a much sturdier plywood. I prettied up the inside of the back with some wallpaper I found here for $15. My favorite part of the bookshelf is that it holds a lot of my supplies very nicely, including my behemoth wide format printer. I cut a 2” hole in the back of the shelf to accommodate wires. I even managed to fit in some speakers so I can listen to pandora or Ira Glass (he’s my nerd crush) while working.



Next to the bookshelf, my desk. 
Still to be done: Lots of wires to corral. The chair is also due for another cover, and possibly a repainting? I need a pinboard in front of the desk so I can look at pretty pictures and plot my next project while working at my job…hey, I’m all about multitasking! I have a small project with some christmas lights as seen here in the works. I’m also looking for a nice pendant light or chandelier to replace the ugly utilitarian one above.


Art on the walls! I finally have a place to place my embroidery hoop art.


My “Create” glass door art also found a home. If you remember from previous posts, this was originally designed to be hung horizontally. Alas, when I tried to do the same in this tiny office space, I found that the piece was about a half inch too long for the length of the room. So I re-oriented and hung it vertically. It still works, I think. The second (smaller) bookshelf provides additional storage.


Ugh, again the wires!That would be the ethernet wire needed for the internet connection for my job snaking its way through the picture. The wire traveled from the family room next door because I did not want to drill one more hole through the walls.

Side note: The internet connection is the single reason I started this whole project. For my job I have to have a hard-wired (not wireless) connection, a hardwired phone and a quiet room with a door. Our modem is in the family room, which is the main family hangout. My work hours fall right into after-school time which means noisy background. My choices were to either do this project, or work out of my bedroom, which is on the other end of the house from the internet and phone on the second floor. Running a long cord was out of the question due to the distance and location of the bedroom.  I could have also chosen to pay another $55 per month for a second internet connection in my bedroom, but that made no financial sense to me. I also don’t like the idea of a working bedroom. Besides, it would have been less fun to take the easy way out. Henceforth, a new office it is!

Anywhoo, I managed to also fit a rug into the space.


The restyled dresser, remember that? (I have another restyle of the fronts in the works, involving the wallpaper I used on the bookshelf. Stay tuned) The dresser provides much needed storage and the surface also holds my beloved vintage sewing machine. I have a thing for old sewing machines, especially the really heavy ones with metal gears inside. I feel about them the same way people feel when looking at pets at the pound. I always find myself gazing lovingly at them when I’m at the thrift store, knowing that I dare not bring another one home. I scored this one for about $12. It came with all the important parts and sews like a dream.

How about that doorway! I even put up molding!


Breakdown: I made use of things I already had on hand, so the décor didn’t cost anything new. I used wallpaper I bought for another project for $15.

So there ya have it. A quick tour of my freshly re-built but still a work in progress office/craft space. I will post more pictures as I get things more streamlined and decorated.

Office Build Update, Part 1

So the last week has been quite productive for me. It was especially productive because my beloved van decided to conk out on me during a run to lowes. Luckily I didn’t have any big items in the van at the time. Of course the unfortunate event would fall during my 3 whole days off work, as well as the week ‘The Hubs Was Really Busy At Work’ and could not spare the car. So I’ve been basically under house arrest, forcing me to be extra productive. No gratuitous thrift, grocery or home improvement store trips for me.

I am now 90% done with my big office project. The space I converted is roughly 5’x7’ closet off my kitchen that was previously used as a pantry. While it was nice having a separate room for all the kitchen items, the space was grossly under-utilized, and it just made sense to turn it into a desperately needed office for me.

Some of its charms: crooked walls, uneven ceilings and slightly wonky floors. Fun times. The entry way (which later became the doorway) was an odd size, so I had to frame a small wall so that the entry would fit a a 30” door. The left wall edge (seen in the first picture below) was also seriously crooked with a full inch difference in width between the ceiling and the floor. Framing the small wall also gave me a chance to correct the crookedness of the wall edge that the door would be hung on to. Of course this also means that the resulting wall would be wider at the top than the bottom. I decided I could live with that.

Disclaimer: I am not, in any way, shape or form, a builder, contractor, carpenter or anything even close. I have learned on the job, driven purely by my desire and need to do this. I googled for information and learned as much as I could about doing this type of work, and I suggest you do the same.

Here is the opening for the door before the project started:


I sawed wood (and my thumb, ouch!) with a miter box. I framed a small wall.



I cut and hung drywall. I mudded said drywall.


With the help of La Princessa, I framed and hung the door. I can you can always count on my girl to want to do what I do! The boys (so far) seem to share their Daddy’s complete lack of interest in anything home improvement related, hehe! Okay, okay The Mister helped drive a couple of nails and took some pictures lol.


Framing the door is a complete blur…


Here is the wall, framed, with a door:


The breakdown:

3 2×4 Studs: approx $6
1 of sheet 1/2” Drywall: $8
Joint compound: already had on hand
Door: $5 from the Habitat for Humanity Restore
Door Frame w/hinges: $5 from the Habitat for Humanity Restore
Door molding: $2 from the Habitat for Humanity Restore
Paint and primer: already on hand
Doorknob: $8
Assortment of Nails and screws: already on hand

about $30. A steal, I say!

With the door on, the hard part was officially over. Next comes the fun part. Read on to Part Deux.