DIY Desk!

We officially have a desk nook and y’all I be all Beyonce crazy in love with this beauty. And beyond being easy on the eyes, it’s as functional as all get out which is probably actually getting it more brownie points than anything for me.

So Jay, knowing he had a crazy wife, who reminds him on the daily that she is now more than *half* way through baking a child and time is of the essence, made the magic happen and got this desk done by my self created deadline of the end of the month, so thank you, husband (you rock).

I mentioned in this post that we decided to keep things a bit more simple, and nix the bookcases (for now) and just get something functional and done.

You can actually see our table top inspiration right outside with our large farmhouse style table. Jay always tells people he built a picnic table when he talks about it, which makes me lol. Do you hear Joanna Gaines calling her tables picnic tables – no – you don’t. We need to work on our marketing pitch 😀

I’m quasi obsessed with the imperfections in the wood, which kinda make this look like we reclaimed it off the back porch of some 1920’s bungalow. Y’all – these are cheapo lumber 2×10’s that you can get at Home Depot for $8 a piece (for an 8′ board). Hella score, right?

As you can see, one feature, shall we say, of this desk is the ability to have a built-in litter box snuck in for easy storage options. Are these things you think about when you get a cat – no, they’re not, but this litter box is sorta a PITA (hehe – get it?) I mean, whatever, what are you going to do. I bought a smell neutralizer thing a ma jig from Amazon which helps (a lot) but some day when we don’t have cat anymore I won’t persay – miss the litter box presence 😉 We bought this “bad air sponge” in our last house to help with a musty smell as well, and I literally swear by it if anyone is looking to knock out a bad smell.

You can see the litter box “rug” sticking out on this longer style photo and I definitely want to replace that with a 4×6 rug that fills out the space a bit more and doesn’t make the litter box part stick out as overtly.

On the opposite side we have space for extra storage, books, whatever. I’m trying to keep it simple though to keep clutter down so I might pop one more basket in there are time, or may just leave it open and accessorize it later 🙂

Off to the left, on our “litter box” side we have the litter and our printer. This is the litter box we purchased which works great and fits in the little cubby spot perfectly!

It feels a lot more functional these days than our before, which was just a console table.

Built_In_Desk_Window


Building A Desk

So y’all ever get like sorta ahead of yourself and create, in your head, what would be your ideal but then you realize over time, it’s probably best to just go for what’s REAL. Like, set your sites a bit, well – smaller.

My dear husband, you guys. He’s the best. I come to him with ideas, and he builds them. Sometimes he complains and grumbles – but what he usually does before he starts belly aching is procrastinate. Now, I can’t blame him for any of the above, but I have an ever expanding uterus and these days I’m on a tight timeline to get things done.

So in the name of compromise, and having something up and ready to go sooner rather than later, instead of my grand vision (this).

Built In Desk Design

I settled on something a bit more manageable. The silver lining was that we were able to use a counter top we had already built this summer for another project that was *literally* sitting in our garage and put it to use, AND we were able to use considerably less wood, which brought our total out of pocket cost to $30 in wood, and $30 in paint (which I plan to use in our daughter’s room, too). You can see the piece of wood peaking behind the plywood.

Built_Ins_From_Plywood

The plywood is what we used for the base of the desk and the main change from my grand vision is that instead of having bookcases flank either side, I opted for a stand alone style desk for now because it was a) way less work and b) way cheaper/faster.

You can see the bases starting to take shape here. We used construction grade plywood for this base and it turned out great.

DIY_Built_In_Desk

It’s the same wood we used when we did our built-ins (below) a few months back, so more or less, we already knew what we were working with and how it would look once finished. It’s $30 per sheet at Home Depot, for those that may want to use it in the future.

Affordable_Library_Sconce


For each of the bases we prepped all of our wood before and very strategically (ie on paper first) decided how we would cut the wood to minimize scrap and make sure we got as far as possible with each wood piece.

H LOVES helping his dad with projects now, but hates the extra noise. I don’t know if other people’s kids are as obsessed with noises as mine but pretty much every single thing on this green earth, his first comment to us is – it made a noise? Yes, child, it did. Plus with anything as loud as a table saw, etc, I want his ears to be covered anyway since I’d feel sorta bad if we gave to poor kid issues down the road from brazenly using all kinds of noise makers around him. (These are the earmuffs we bought for him and he loves them – Jay even wears them sometimes when the kiddo isn’t around, haha!)

Ear_Protection_Child

Once the cabinet bases were trimmed out, each one looked like this! I even had Jay leave out the base on the left side of the cabinet so that we could add in a built-in location for our litter box, haha!

DIY_Desk_Base

One thing we did that actually made a big difference this time around was use a wood hardner compound that made the wood so much smoother, and minimized our need to do quite as much sanding (which was a big time saver). I’d highly recommend this step if you’re new to building out furniture, like we are, because it was a game changer for this build! This was the product we used (left here from the previous homeowner, bonus).

Cliff hanger, I’ll post photos next week for you to feast your eyeballs on!! 😀

Desk Duty

So babies – they kinda take over and claim their own spaces in this world. Which is ultimately a good thing, but in the mean time, we’re pretty busy over here shifting our office from workspace, to baby space. Mostly this is fun and games (and a few too many trips to Home Depot – $$$) but it also meant pulling out our (insert JAY’s) bob the builder skills to whip up a desk of his pregnant wife’s dreams.

This is our office currently. I don’t feel *too* sad about transitioning this space over because it’s like not done in the least and basically a glorified storage room.

Office_Moonlight_Benjamin_Moore

And the floor is NEVER empty like that, haha. Usually has costumes or books or a teepee splayed out in the middle of it 😉 This was Saturday am right after our weekend round up of vacuuming. It’s a fleeting moment, so I had to capture it.

And this is the desk area.

Benjamin_Moore_Moonlight

And this is what I dreamed up for this room and I told y’all that it was still going down just in a new locale. (Because this is going in it’s place…)

Lemon_Grove_Interiors

Drum roll pa-lease. The new locale!

Built_In_Desk_Window

Not quite an office, persay, but y’all, I think it’s going to be the perfect little nook for a desk / workspace and a landing spot for our computer. This is ultimately what I envision – something built out entirely around the window, with some bookcases on either end to store odds and ends, and to make a statement as well.

Built In Desk Design

Here is a general idea of the look/feel I’m going for! Perhaps a base color similar to this?

Build In Desk Ideas

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And I love how this photo shows a very similar bookcase flanking either side of the wall.

Built In Desk

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I’ll have progress on our build-out next week, perhaps even some after photos. I may have to buy Jay a 12-pack of beer or some bourbon to get a finished desk done around here 😉


Upstairs Tour

Now that y’all have had a chance to see our downstairs last week, I wanted to stop back with a few photos for an upstairs tour as well. Our new house isn’t large by “American” standards, but it’s absolutely huge to us. All said and done, the house is around 2,200 square feet. All our other houses never got about 1,500 square feet, so we’re kind of scratching our heads on what to do with all the extra space.

Upstairs we have (3) bedrooms, a laundry space, and (2) bathrooms.

Hardwood on stair landing

When you get upstairs, there’s a little hallway that connects everything together. The doors to the left there are the laundry space – it’s just a little closet area. It would be nice to have a full room, but meh – it’s got lots of shelving in there so I think we’ll be just fine with it the way it is.

Niche at top of steps

There’s also a little bookcase at the top of the stairs. Other homes in this neighborhood actually have this bookcase as a small linen closet, and I like that idea, so we may convert it back in the future. Other than the bedroom closets, there really isn’t a place upstairs to store a vacuum and other essentials, so I think it may be better served as an extra storage space.

Continuing on with the upstairs tour, you can see with the Master, and the hall side by side, there is a lot of dark green in this house. They’ve basically used 3-4 dark colors throughout the house, so I know we’ll be stocking up on primer when we get new coats of paint up on the wall 😉

Master Bedroom with ensuite

This is the first bedroom we’ve had that’s big enough for a King! It’s a-mazing!!! King beds feel like 52 times larger than Queen beds to me 🙂

We also have a bathroom off to the side with this ginormous (albeit rather dated) shower.

Walkin Shower DImensions

And another area for a double vanity up against the wall AND we have a little toilet room – ha ha! Just add it to my list of things I’d never have in my house. 😉

Double Vanity in Bathroom

The other two rooms upstairs are for our little guy and the office space.

Upstairs Office Space

Once again – more dark green 😉

Dark Green Paint Color

Oh and last but not least on the upstairs tour, we also have a bonus room over a garage! Pretty cool, huh? This is a vast and open space that I know will be great for guests once we get rid of the sea of red 😀

Bonus Room Over Garage

Who’s the Boss

A few weeks ago, I had Jay bring up the last of the boxes from our basement and I was delighted to find all our artwork in mystery box #1. Between all our moving around and life re-configuring, I think I forgot that I own artwork – a decent amount of it actually. Remember how I lamented that our house was feeling sorta non-homey, well I thought our artwork hanging would be a good place to start to get things feeling a bit more cozy and lived in.

When you walked into the office before, it was feeling a bit bare. In need of some wall adorning, wouldn’t you agree?

How to Decorate Office

So I mixed and matched and tried to find the prints that would look best – but everything I found felt too empty in the room, like it just wasn’t taking up enough wall space.

I finally found a grouping of (6) botanicals, which we had in our dinging room in the last house.

Dining_Room_Botanical_Art_Collage

I loved the idea of grouping (4) on each side – alas if you do the math, that leaves me two short … bummer dude.

But THEN, I remembered that I had two more, that we had in our loo in the last house. Remember these guys?

Botanical Art Work in Bathroom

So I crossed my fingers and headed over to Michaels, where we purchased the initial (6) frames. It was a generic(ish) white frame, but I obviously needed it to match exactly if I was going to group everything together.

And yaknowwhat?? They had the frames and they were only $5.99 each! Huzzaah!! Now that’s what I call a success 🙂

Inexpensive Frame Locations

While Jay was getting the tools he would need to pop up the prints, I took a quick second to arrange them so he could just grab each one and put it up.

Arranging Artwork

Although the room definitely still needs some accessorizing, I think the artwork definitely helps to make things look a bit more finished.

If I could actually keep fiddle leaf fig trees alive, one would look splendid in the corner of the office, no? 😉

Office Artwork

And another shot of the space, to the right of the computer and desk.

Botanical Art

Since we already had the art and most of the frames on hand, our total cost was around $13, which makes this little momma one happy camper 🙂

One more before:

Decorating Office

and after!

Botanical Art in Office

Officer Mary

Can I get a what, what for little nooks in your house that you’re able to convert into your very own tiny home office. Srrriously, you guys, I’m completely smitten with the concept of having my own space to stretch out to get my work on. Not to mention, it’s pretty nice to not have our computer chilling on our dinner table, like we had in the apartment. Well, doesn’t take much to improve off that situation, anyway. 😉

So this is what the room looked like pre-movin.

Small Home Office

The room is 6×9, which in my mind, is just the right size for a desk and a few extra accessories. The location of the room is a bit different, too, since you actually have to cut through our extra bedroom upstairs to get to it. Here’s the layout to help refresh your memory.  Second Floor Layout Since I knew that I’d be more or less, using the office right after move-in, I moved painting this room to the top of the priority list along with the Master Bedroom painting. We went with a nice, calm gray tone that reads bluish green in the right light, and pure gray as the sun starts to fade. The color is Montpelier Madison White by Valspar.

Valspar Montpelier Madison White

I love how it looks against the refinished floors. So nice along with the nice, crisp painted trim.

montpelier_madison_white

This is my view from my desk these days. It’s in dire need of some accessorizing (artwork!), but for now, things are certainly feeling much more settled than when I was working off of the Dining Room table in the apartment.

Bamboo Office Desk

Right now, I’ve unearthed a few things from the boxes to add some organization in here. Our campaign drawer that was in the basement before is working great as office storage and a printer stand.

Campaign_Drawer_in_Office

I snagged the lamp from our old entry way to use for some supplemental lighting in here, too. That little storage container next to it is for all my pens and pencils – got it at the good will for .25. Zinggggg.

Seashell_Lamp

Now I’m on to picking out more exciting things, like a rug! I tried to re-purpose the one we had in our entry in the last house, but as you can see, it’s a wee bit small.

Picking_The_Right_Size_Rug

Here are a few of my top contenders! Tell me, which one floats your boat?

Best Office Rugs

Sisal Rug // Jute Rug // Blue + Gray Rug // Ivory Rug

 

 

Pouf-a-Palooza

We just finished staining the floors last night and my body is sore in ways I didn’t think were possible. Although I love this part of the renovation process (so much change! big things happening!), not going to lie, every once and I while I’d like to be at the point where I’m picking out little details, ya know, like poufs! 🙂 Ever since I popped one of these bad boys into our staged office in our last house, I’m pretty much a certified addict.

One Kings Lane had some of the best selection for pouf’s that I liked, so I put together a little dream/wish list of what I’d snag!

One Kings Lane Poufs

 

Emerson Pouf Pink/White | Avett Round Pouf | Moroccan Pouf Gray | Anniston Pouf | Maze Pouf | Nina Pouf | Wylie Pouf

Since I’m going to have an office in this next house as well, I’m thinking a pouf may need to walk right back into my life … Like POOF, here’s a pouf! This is how I’d style my office.

Office Martha’s Vineyard Map | Dunham Swing Arm Sconce | Delancy Desk | Pencil Case | Paper Weight | Note Pad |  Classic Palm Tree | Leni Rug  | Wylie Pouf

Got any other pouf addicts out there? Anyone? Ok, I’ll start. My name is Mary, and I’m a pouf addict.

Psst! Want to save some dough? Here is a link for a $15 credit for purchases of $30 or more. Happy shopping!


Lovely Shiney Things

Although I love the concept of the built-in desk in our basement, the hardware and paint on it are mega dated and in need of a heave ho. Right now the desk has meh white tile, with a black cabinet base and brushed nickel hardware. My BIGGEST pet peeve with it right now is the fact that all the wires are scattered all over the top of the desk, since there are no outlet holes on the top. That will definitely need to change when we rip out the counter.

I’ve been searching for some hardware to finish off the look and I’m torn between the oil rubbed bronze look, and an antique brass finish. I like the idea of the antique brass, mainly because it seems a bit more neutral than the darker option, and less mitchy matchy, since all our hardware in the house is already darker.

I love the look of this hardware – on a white cabinet with a wood counter… Only bummer on these little lovelies is that the retail for $4 each, and we need (15). A wee bit pricey for hardware – I may splurge though. 🙂

Basement Hardware Basement Hardware

Or if we go dark, I would probably do a more pronounced pull with some detailed knobs.

Basement Hardware

And holy mackerel – I totally need this guy at some point, no? This one is for furniture – which would be so whimsical and fun! I’m definitely going to hunt for a similar looking one for the front door knocker.

Basement Hardware

When the space is finished, I’d like it to have the look and feel of some of the spaces below. Eventually I plan on putting some type of natural fiber rug down here as well, but for now, the neutral carpet is a-ok with me 🙂

Office Inspiration Office Inspiration

Not certain about how much shelving we will be installing on this back wall (vs. art), but I definitely am liking the look of clean, white cabinetry with understated hardware.