1.03.2011

My Home "Office" Re-Do


Hi friends!  I hope you had fun ringing in the new year!  We had such a wonderful time with the family we chose for ourselves - our close friends and their kiddos.  We spent our eighth year welcoming the new year together on an overnight extravaganza.  As the kids have grown and become active in various sports and activities, it's become more and more difficult to get together over the course of the year, so we parlay our New Year's Eve celebration into a two-day affair.  The kids bring sleeping bags, we all make oodles of food, and we hunker down to play games, eat, sled, eat, drink festive concoctions, eat, and watch football.  It's such a blast and by New Year's Night, my face hurts from laughing and I think I shall never put another morsel of food in my mouth.  This feeling lasts for about 10 hours while I slumber, and then I wake up thinking about what we brought home for leftovers. 

There's nothing like spending time with people who really know you, love your kids, and love to laugh.  Our 8 collective children amused each other for two days straight without a squabble, and the adults stayed up way past a mature and reasonable time, the kind of sleep deprivation that takes an almost-40 year old several days to bounce back from!  It was the best way to celebrate the end of 2010 and a new year just waiting to unfold.

New projects are aplenty in this house, but first I have to show you my favorite project of 2010.  It's a little space just for me.  Do you recall that a while back Kate at Centsational Girl had a "Where Do You Blog?" party?  I showed my old TV armoire that I had repurposed for the computer.  Here it is in the corner of our living room {before the walls & trim were painted}:

In our old house, we bought a flat screen TV and no longer needed this big ol' Bessy, so we used it as a liquor cabinet {pardon the icky dust, this photo was taken on moving day!}  I had visions of attaching a mirror onto the back and adding shelving for glassware.

In the new house, I really needed a spot for the computer, so out went the booze and in went the computer, printer and whatnot.  I thought I was such a smarty-pants coming up with this solution:

but apparently I wasn't the only one who thought of that idea - Martha Stewart and Pottery Barn both featured armoires as a home office.........

This space has worked out great for blogging, emailing, editing photos, doing the bills and keeping track of the family's comings and goings on my calendar.  I especially love being able to close up the armoire when we entertain in the living room.  However, I spend a lot of time in this little spot and it didn't feel very fabulous.  That big hole where the back of the old TV extended out was not definitely not working for me.

So I dressed up the big Bessy with a few fabric remnants and today I'm just loving her!  When I sit down here I am surrounded by dates I need to remember, files I want access to, an organized space and little things that make me happy.

To cover up the big hole in the back, I bought a couple pieces of foam board and taped them together, then covered them with a fabric that coordinated with the living room furniture.  I glued the fabric to the board and then used an epoxy to attach it to the inside back of the armoire.

I also used remnant fabric to cover cork board squares that I had taped together to fit the space.  I used 3M double stick tape to attach to the doors of the armoire.  The doors slide into the sides of the armoire so they aren't in the way when I'm working there, yet I still have access to everything on them.....
Love notes from my kids...
and funny mail from my Sue Sue.

I made cute push pins with magnets found at Michael's for $1 that I glued plain old tacks to.
It's like they were made for me!!!


Because I have limited space, I wanted to hang files on one of the doors.  The middle of the doors are made of a very thin wood, however, so I had to get a little creative on how to hang the wire file rack.  Using short screws, I attached a small piece of wood to the thicker door frame, then attached the rack to this bracket.  It's perfect for access to files I want on hand, such as bills that need to be paid, etc.  I found that little calendar in the dollar bin at Target, and keep the kids' school-related to-dos like fundraisers on the clipboard.

This board was in one of the kid's closets, all neglected and unloved, so I reclaimed it for my own little space.

These photos seriously make me happy to look at every day. 
Check out my dad on his wedding day - he's taking the garter off my mom in this photo.  And next to him is a picture of his grandsons, who both bear his name.  Makes my heart swell with happiness to see them side-by-side.  They never knew him but I know he is with them every day.

When they first met in the early sixties and started dating, my mom wrote Dad's phone number on the back of a work time slip.  I can't believe she still had it after all these years.  Of course I had to have it.

How about this one of Hannah & Sean running down a hill when they were little things - are those expressions not the best? 

Little feminine touches warm up the space.  I bought myself cheap flowers at the grocery store.  I deserve them and so do you!

With just a little effort this space has become a haven for me, where I have access to everything I need to run the house and of course, blog.  It's a happy little space and I only invested about $15 into it for the fabric and glue. 
I hope you enjoyed visiting my cheerful little home office!
I'm linking to My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia - check out other fabulous projects in blogland this week by clicking this button below.  Thanks for hosting, Kristin!
My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia

I'm also joining the Show & Tell party at Blue Cricket Designs and

Closets & Nooks at The Blooming Hydrangea!

I love hearing from you! {Comments welcome!}

35 comments:

Samantha said...

This looks fabulous!! I love the functionality of it all while it all still looks feminine and pretty. I have an armoire that I am planning on redoing into something similar. You have given me plenty of ideas!

~Lisa said...

It's lovely! When we finally move into a house I think I'm going to have to do something like that. :)

Anonymous said...

Li Li!
Love the new home office - especially the handsome pixs of your dad!!
Your new space is warm, interesting, and beautiful - just like you.
ox
Sue Sue

Madeline said...

The slip of paper with your dad's phone number brought tears to my eyes! What a beautiful memory to have!
I love your work space! Going to check out Edie's blog...

Robin said...

So very lovely. It must be wonderful to open the door and have such a pretty space meet you!

Courtney {a thoughtful place} said...

Lisa those are great! I love the one in the armoire. I especially love the up close photo where you see the lamp and fabric. So beautiful.

Kathleen said...

So talented and resourceful you are! love it!

Kathleen xx

Sixty-Fifth Avenue said...

Cute, cute oh so cute! You did such a great job sprucing up your little office and I love it!

Anonymous said...

What a great idea! Your colors and items give just the right feminine touch which I will try to replicate.

Thanks...

Tara said...

This is just absolutely gorgeous, I'm jealous!

A Home Made by Kiki said...

Just came across your blog tonight...love it! Where did you get the quatrefoil fabric for the back?? I have been looking for something similar! I am your newest follower!

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The Monogrammed Mrs. said...

LOVE it!!

I have a closet office...

http://monogrammedmrs.blogspot.com/2010/04/desk-in-closet.html

I need to take an updated photo because I've added a lot since this one.

Kathy C. said...

wow! What a fantastic transition! I absolutely love it! I found your blog through the HOUSEography linky party... definitely going to go check out some more of your posts! :)

Ashley@ DesignBuildLove.co said...

WOW!!!!!!!! This is definitely one of the best armoire/office makeovers I've seen! LOVE it! I may have to do this at some point when the rooms start filling up with kiddos... :)

NICE JOB!

Melissa at HOUSEography said...

Great job! A nice use of space!!! Thanks for linking to my House Tour Party!

Cassie @ Primitive & Proper said...

wow- goes to show what a difference a little pattern can make!

shannon said...

{on the house tour}

So glad I stopped by! I love the creativity involved with transforming your space into this beautiful haven just for you. It is wonderful!

Shannon

Ange said...

Way to use the armoir! I love the fabric touches to the inside of the doors and the back. You did a great job personalizing the space and making it lovely! Thanks for linking up with Roomspiration!