Well, the day has come! I am participating in my first One Room Challenge, and I am so excited. For those who don’t know, the One Room Challenge is a biannual event that encourages bloggers/designers/Instagrammers to transform a space in a relatively short time frame (the current ORC is eight weeks long). I have been a big fan of the ORC for years. To say I’m nervous is an understatement. My first project includes multiple parts, and some are things I’ve never done before. There’s nothing like a deadline to keep you on your toes. Am I right?
For the ORC, I’ll be re-doing one of the hardest working rooms in our house – the home office! It’s a small room right off the entry and, as you can imagine, I spend a lot of time there. This is where I do all my design work, blogging, creative stuff, bill pay, my husband does all his volunteer work and where I have video chats with friends. Not only does it get used a ton, but it’s a major spot for storage. We store files, photography equipment, craft supplies, old memories, office supplies, old textbooks, picture frames, electronics, and more.
The Office & The Problems
The office is oddly shaped and measures about ~8.5′ x 9′ (the walls are a little wonky, no perfectly square room here). It hasn’t changed much since we first moved into the house. At move in, the room had green carpet, beige walls with a world map border, a boob light, and orange-toned wood trim. From the beginning, I knew I wanted to add cabinetry for storage. Until now (eek!), the room had a mish-mash of old office furniture to make it work…barely.
I got ambitious about a year or so ago, removed the border, and hung a new light (it’s staying, guys!). But, as you can see below, the room is cluttered! As I said, it’s a room that needs storage. It also happens to be the dumping ground for DIY projects (or test ideas). It does have some special features, like the self-opening filing cabinet, an old relic from my husband’s parent’s office. The back corner is, well…too embarrassing to show. It has picture frames, stacks of textbooks, and random computer parts (never know when you’ll need a hard drive!).
When looking at the wall closest to the door, you’ll see even more stuff. Most of these are random things that don’t belong. So the office is also serving as a weird waiting room for my stuff. Each piece hoping that I will soon get to it and determine its future. Despite all this stuff, I still really like the office. It gets great light and is a perfect size.
Now that everyone sees the mess, we can get to the fun stuff – the design! For the most part, the office’s floor plan is not changing; it’s just going to be upgraded with cabinetry, a built-in desk, and new furnishings! Some of the current items are staying, like the round rattan table from Target, the beaded light, and organizational pieces (magazine holders, etc.). Still, the majority of the room will be replaced.
The floor plan below shows the general setup (the colors are not accurate). A chair and side table will remain on the left wall. The wall across from the window will have one cabinet and be the main “work area.” The computer monitor will be here, the same as the current setup. The wall across from the chair hosts the majority of cabinetry and will be the main storage source in the room. Hallelujah.
Here is a detailed elevation of the cabinetry. This is from the supplier’s website, so it’s pretty basic but gives you a good idea of the setup. The wall will have an open shelf unit in the center flanked by two large cabinets. For the base cabinets, I ordered mostly single-door units. I included one two-drawer cabinet to serve as the filing cabinet. The three drawer cabinet that goes on the adjacent wall (the other part to form the desk) is not shown. The cabinets are white with inset doors.
I’ve played around with Homestyler, a great web-based floor planner program, and made a rendering of the room, so it’s easier to understand. Most of the details are different, but it communicates the general setup and feel of the room. Homestyler has been updating their program over the last year, and I’m still getting used to the new features. I honestly miss many of the old options, but I think I need more time to learn how to use the program.
The design board of the room below gives you the visual direction of the room. Over the course of the 8 weeks, I’ll talk more about the different components. A couple of things are still not ordered (blinds and a few accessories), so things may change slightly. The general vibe is a warm, comfortable pallet with blues and greens mixed in for good measure.
The To-Do List
Alright, here is where my anxiety starts ratching up as I write down all the things that we need to do in a short period of time.
- Replace carpet with hardwood floors
- Paint window trim and door casing white
- Replace baseboards (they’ll be thicker and white)
- Wallpaper the entire room (I’ve only wallpapered 1 wall my entire life and used a completely different method. Please keep me in your thoughts)
- Obtain cabinets (delivery date is early June) and assemble cabinets
- Install cabinets (never did this before) & add needed trim
- Install butcher block countertops
- Replace light switches, outlets, and plates
- Replace blinds
- Sew a pillow cover
- DIY a frame for some DIY art, maybe buy a frame?
- Put the room together and pray the chair arrives before the end of the challenge.