To make room for our baby girl arriving in March, we’re rearranging half our house to clear out what has been our office. We significantly downsized our office and are finding new locations around the house for our books and the plethora of household items that filled the office closet. That, of course, means we’re also rearranging and reorganizing several other rooms including our combined living and dining room, mud room, storage areas in the guest house, and my husband’s tool and lawn closet on the porch. Some of these spaces are going to be more drastically redecorated or reorganized than others, but the one I have been most excited about (other than the nursery, of course) is our new bedroom office.
While we have a large bedroom that is the entire second floor of our century-old bungalow, the space requires creative decorating, as the ceilings are low and angled since it was originally an attic space. Rearranging our bedroom to accommodate a new downsized office revealed a much better use of the space than we had originally set up.
To create space in our bedroom, we moved the dresser along the half-wall between our bed and the staircase, took off the attached mirror and placed it in the guest house for now, moved our nightstand to what will be the nursery and relocated the pack-and-play to what we call Percy’s Casa, which is one of the dormers of our bedroom where our dog’s bed and toy box lived. Percy now bunks in the new bedroom office and has a prime window spot as long as our toddler isn’t using the dog bed as his couch. Percy’s Casa still has her toy box, but now also a rocking horse and pack-and-play, which will be turned back into the infant napper and changing table in a few months.
To my surprise, our new arrangement revealed a more more efficient use of the space. Bonus! So without further ado, here’s the new and improved master bedroom, including a peek at the master bathroom and coffee bar:
I am greatly enjoying our new bedroom office, which beautifully blends modern into our traditional bedroom decor. We wanted the office to feel like a separate space, while not feeling out of place—I think we achieved that! To allow light to permeate the large, open room, we went with a white-tempered-glass table instead of a traditional desk as well as a smaller, stationary chair. Interestingly enough the desk and chair we selected were both intended for a dining room, which in my opinion elevates the modern furniture pieces to a more classy decor that blends well with our traditional bedroom furniture. To tie the two spaces together, I chose the white, metal brocade wall files and pencil cup to loosely coordinate with the pattern in our bedding. I used the master bedroom color palette as inspiration for the pops of color in the otherwise white office, but went with bolder hues to distinguish the space as its own. The original Ty Wilson artwork depicting my husband and I, which my husband gave me as an engagement present, also served as inspiration. (If you’re interested in watching his proposal, you can view the professional and amateur videos on YouTube.)
Since we had to significantly pair down file storage (notice there are only drawers and no file cabinet space in the new office), we came up with a minimalist paper file organization system. We have wall files as our inbox to keep papers off the desk and more organized than our previous inbox system. I created nicely labeled folders using my label maker: Receipts to Enter, Bills to Pay, Kindra To Do, Dave To Do, Events, 2014 Taxes and Preschool. The file boxes on the shelves now store important paperwork we’d like to reference but don’t necessarily need to access regularly. We categorized these items into Healthcare, Home/Hobbies, Cars/Insurance and Career/Investments. The multimedia boxes in the middle house current year entered receipts and data CDs. We also now both use Dropbox and share files for important paperwork that we can scan in or save electronic copies of without having to keep an additional paper copy at home. This has worked really well for our nonprofit, RighTrak Industries, as well as Dave’s work life, so we’re just extending it into our personal file system as well. And since photos and electronic file storage is increasing, we have a separate back-up hard drive, which we tried to hide under the computer screen. Other big changes we made are moving our archive files, such as financial paperwork for the past seven years of taxes, to Dave’s office—a perk to being self-employed and having a nice, large office with lots of previously unused file space. And since our Dell printer-copier-scanner doesn’t play well with Apple’s new Yosemite operating system, we’re moving that to Dave’s office as well and are going to see how long we can go without one. If nothing else, that should significantly cut down on paper use in the office.
One of my favorite things about this drawer unit is that it has a built-in lock. Although it was designed for security purposes, I immediately thought of it as built-in baby proofing—a must for two curious little ones who frequently will be in the space. I enjoyed having the opportunity to sort through our office clutter and edit down to whatever would fit in this new drawer unit, sorting like items together. I reused a few existing drawer organizers that we had, purchased a few stackable drawer organizers from The Container Store and made use of the drawer dividers that came with the unit. Please ignore the stack of files in the bottom drawer, as these are what’s left of our old filing system, which incorporated hanging file folders for receipts divided by account; fortunately, after 2014 taxes are completed these will be moving to our archives at Dave’s place of business.
For those of you interested, here are the items we purchased:
- Desk: IKEA Torsby table in glass white
- Chair: IKEA Bernhard chair in kavat blue
- Wall Files: Amazon.com Design Ideas Vinea wall file in white
- File Folders: Amazon.com Smead 1/2-cut tab letter files in assorted colors
- Pencil Cup: Amazon.com Design Ideas Vinea pencil cup in white
- Cord Organizer: IKEA Montera cable management
- Drawers: IKEA Galant drawer unit in white
- Drawer Organizers: The Container Store stacking organizer trays
- Shelves: The Home Depot Rubbermaid white decorative shelf
- Shelf Brackets: The Home Depot Rubbermaid satin nickel tulip decorative shelf bracket
- Boxes: The Container Store Semikolon multimedia boxes in grey and lime, Bigso Stockholm letter boxes in green, navy, grey and turquoise
To offset the cost of all our purchases for the new office and two new bookshelves in the living/dining room, we’re selling our old office furniture, TV stand and two file cabinets on Craig’s List. While my husband has a few small tasks he’d like to eventually complete in the new office—such as a quick re-leveling the drawer unit and the longer-term addition of adding custom-cut wooden blinds to the two smaller windows—I’m considering the space working and complete for now. I absolutely love our new bedroom office and am grateful for a handy husband who could turn my vision into reality!