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I’m so excited to share another room update in our Kalamazoo house! I’ve actually been wanting to share this post for a while, but then a bunch of other home projects got in the way. So here we are, almost 3 months after I took these photos! Oh well.
This is one of the rooms where I spend the most of my time, because I work from home! We had to set it up pretty quickly, but the room has really evolved over the past year that we’ve lived here, and I’m so excited about the direction it’s going.
The office is one of the bedrooms upstairs (it’s right next to the master bedroom) and had pretty good bones to start out with: hardwood floors, 3 windows, and a layout that would be a little awkward for a bedroom but great for an office.
Here’s a before and after comparison:
I know it’s not entirely fair to use these photos for before-and-after shots, because the lighting is way better in the after photos, but… that’s what I have to work with. 🤷🏼♀️
We lived with the blue and white walls for a bit, but then painted them the same color as almost all of the other rooms in our house, which is a nice light grey. To be honest, until I saw these photos, I totally forgot that the office used to be blue! It’s like it was always meant to be grey.
For a while we had a pull-out couch on the wall where the bookshelves are, but when we moved into our current master, we decided to put the couch in the new spare bedroom instead. That way, when we have guests, they have their own space that I’m not barging into when I need to work. Plus, I really wanted to put in some bookshelves (we don’t have anywhere else in our house to put our books!), so I was amped to get the couch out of there.
In the back corner of the room is a small bump-out with a third window and the closet. It’s the perfect spot for Stanley’s bed, which we lovingly call his cubicle.
We also replaced all of the shades with these top-down, bottom-up shades from Amazon. They size them to your specifications, and we love them! We’re slowly but surely getting them in every room in the house.
So let’s talk about this bookshelf, because it’s the biggest improvement to the space. After a bunch of back-and-forth about what we wanted them to look like, we ended up following these instructions from Lowe’s.
We pried out the base moulding on the two walls and cut it so it would wrap around the bookshelf. We then started the shelves above the base moulding, which not only helped unify the look, but also enabled us to run electricity into the closet!
You see, our printer is in the closet, but there isn’t an outlet in there, or by any of the walls near it. We ended up running an extension cord under the bookshelves and cut a hole through the wall into the closet so we could get power in there! You can see the small access door we put in the moulding here:
There’s a surge protector plugged into the wall (it’s about a foot from the bookshelf), and then there’s a small hole in the bottom shelf where the cord goes in. You can see there are some small cuts to the baseboard that allow us to pull up a small chunk and easily access the surge protector and extension cord if necessary!
That’s also where the plugs for the essential oil diffuser and bookshelf lights go. It’s all really convenient and looks really clean!
On the opposite wall from our new bookshelf is the built-in desk we brought with us from Cincinnati. It’s actually an IKEA countertop with two hairpin legs on the front, resting on some 2x4s that are attached to the wall.
We also upgraded our desk chairs (finally) to these dining room chairs. I’m obsessed. We used to fight over the less-uncomfortable desk chair before we upgraded, and now our chairs match and we’re both comfortable sitting there for long periods of time!
We still need some artwork for this wall, but for now we’re so happy with how our office is shaping up! Stay tuned for more in the future!
Things We’d Still Like to Do to the Office:
- Finish patching the walls around the bookshelf
- Sand down paint drips on the bookshelf itself
- Find some artwork for above the desk
- Get a better trash can
- Really style the bookshelves
- Add shelves into the closet so we can have better closed storage
- Get a rug
- Get a chair for the corner where Stanley’s bed currently is (sorry, bud)
- Change out the light fixture for a ceiling fan
- Wrangle Sean’s computer cords