The Great Office Makeover

At the end of this month, I will have lived in this house for a year and a half. For the most part, I have the house looking the way I want – at least in the more public rooms. But my office. Oy.

When I was a kid, we would go to visit my Great-Great Aunt Ida (the one who taught me to knit) in Oak Harbor, Washington. On the way into town from her house, we would pass this outdoor factory. This place was about three stories high, and a mess of dirty machinery, pipes, and wheels. It was like a steampunk nightmare. One time I asked Aunt Ida why it looked so bad, and she said, “Well, it’s just how it needs to be so that it works properly.”

You get where this is headed?

My office has been like that steampunk factory nightmare. It hasn’t been decorated at all, but the elements of “design” came together as function dictated. And it was ugly. The walls were a dingy baby chicken yellow. Furniture that didn’t fit anywhere else ended up in here. I couldn’t leave the door open, because there was always something interesting within a dog’s reach, since I hadn’t really thought about storage.

This is supposed to be my creative space!

img_7540.JPG Before: Yellow walls. Cluttery.
img_7543.JPG Stuff shoved wherever it would fit.
img_7542.JPG My computer desk was mostly functional, except for the fact that I had things stored near my desk that I didn’t regularly need.

Facing the window seems like a nice idea, but it is pretty hard on the eyes when you’re staring at a computer screen.

img_7559.JPG First up, empty the room. I moved my desk and computer to the spare bedroom. The dogs were totally happy with that.

Also, five million books were lugged to the garage.

day-153.JPG Next, scrape off the horrible popcorn ceiling.

Whoever invented popcorn ceiling was lazy (it covers a lot of building sins) and an idiot (it holds dust and stink).

img_7558.JPG Here’s the floor once the popcorn snowed down on the terra cotta tiles. I drew a heart to sort of show the real floor color under there.
img_7591.JPG Next, repair walls and test wall colors.

Spackle. Spackle. That’s an awesome word. Spackle.

img_7598.JPG Edge and paint.

In this shot you can see where the edges are dry, and show the true color.

img_7589.JPG Abe stole my drop cloth at one point, and carefully spread it over his dog bed. What? These dogs are so freaking weird.
2.JPG Fresh white paint for the closet doors. Much better than before.

What would be the paint color name for the old color? “Dashing Dinge”? “Bountiful Blah”?

img_7608.JPG Tippy had to make do with the fact that there were no dog beds in the room while I was working.

This photo was taken at about 10pm, because I’m a crazy person who works on projects for 12 hours straight.

room.JPG Ta-da! So. Much. Better.

The color theme to compliment the turquoise walls is black/white/gray with accents of red.

I still need to reshelf the books, and replace the dated light fixture with a small ceiling fan.

img_7674.JPG There is suddenly a ton of space in here. I’d like to find a piece of soft furniture for this spot.

I’m picturing a large red ottoman; or vintage, armless chair. All in due time.

img_7676.JPG I’ve left one giant wall blank so that I can use this color as a backdrop for photos.

I’m really happy with the results of The Great Office Makeover. Can I just say this? Budget for this project was $36. One gallon of paint. I was lucky that the previous owners of this house left me a can of high-gloss white, which I used for the closet doors and trim.

img_7680.JPG I just took this shot a couple of minutes ago. Tippy’s the only one in the photo, but you can see Ike, Abe, and me in shadows.

Have a great weekend!

14 comments on “The Great Office Makeover

  1. Oh wow! your office is gorgeous! You are working in a Tiffany’s Box! How lovely! I always knew you were a jewel!

    Great photos as always, love your new office. Lacey heart your dogs!
    Have a wonderful weekend too! (We’re having Texas weather up here in Vancouver- for 5 days we can (sort of) pretend.)

  2. Beautiful. You’re an inspiration! Thanks to you, my weekend’s going to be chock full of apartment improvements (or, hell, just cleaning it up. It looks like a family of badgers live with me.) Thanks!!

  3. Wow! Your redo looks great! I wasn’t too sure about the color at first. But, the end result looks fantastic. It is always amazing to me what a little bit of paint and a lot of work can accomplish.

  4. I. Am. Jealous.

    I was working on decluttering till my boss called and fussed at me to submit my work for the week. OOPS. Now I am sucked into the vortex of the interwebs….and hungry too. Baby is yanking on the umbilical cord demanding food.

  5. I saw your flickr page – pretty dang close all right. Yup, you deserve a present! And congrats on your excellent makeover budget!

  6. I agree – inspiring! Impressive budget,too. But – you didn’t have to paint the ceiling after removing the popcorn texture?

  7. Yeah, I still need to paint the ceiling. Luckily it isn’t an emergency…it looks surprisingly good right now. After all of the scraping, my arms and shoulders need a break from working over my head!

  8. Love the color! Besides Tiffany Blue, it’s also almost the exact same color as your side bar here.

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