First I must thank you my dear, dear friends for your sweets thoughts and prayers for my dear brother who continues on his road to recovery.
I am currently knee deep in redesigning my office/tv room. My goal is to keep it under $150. Yes, you read that right, $150.00. Given the very enthusiastic response that was received about my new (vintage) settee I thought you might be interested in a step by step breakdown on how to achieve a low cost room redesign.
The gorgeous office of my friend Brooke.
It is best to begin with some inspiration. For me it came in the form of a settee. Next, I began looking through decorating magazines and online sources such as Pinterest for complete room inspiration. After finding the image below I decided I would paint the woodwork of the settee and keep the original goldenrod upholstery. (In the summertime the look will be changed out with a white linen slipcover.)
I do plan on creating a “wall of
frame fame” which will include drawings by my children, other family members and friends. It is an inexpensive, yet meaningful, way of adding artwork to a room.
Successful room design often incorporates modern pieces of furniture with vintage or antique pieces. The tricky part is achieving the right balance. My existing desk, bookcase and file cabinet are from the IKEA Liatorp line. Eventually I would like to replace them with antique options, but for now I need to work with what I have. The settee is of course French in flavor and I have also brought in a Chinese chest. Talk about an office for the united nations! But it can be done.
DIY tip: You can move large pieces of furniture by yourself with the help of furniture sliders.
So I tried placing the bookcase, desk and filing cabinet side by side on the largest wall of this very tiny room.
Now this is where it gets tricky for some people. I happen to have an internal radar that tell me “No, this layout does not work.” Not everyone possesses an inner design voice. We all have different gifts and that is what makes this world of ours beautiful. Remember, I have NO gardening skills whatsoever and Algebra will forever be my nemesis. One of my favorite lines from the movie Mulan is: "We can’t all be acupuncturists”. So if you don’t have “the voice” don’t be sad. Just be happy with your other gifts and seek out someone who does.
I am above all trying to create a good looking room. Sometimes when trying to achieve this it becomes a battle with the workability of a room. This is known as “Form over function”. But in this case the function of the room was more important than looks so I combined the bookcase and desk on a smaller wall. This way the computer screen will not receive glare from the window and the settee could be placed on the wall opposite of the bookcase. As the bookcase holds the tv this placement allowed for optimum viewing pleasure.
On the opposite wall is the settee and the worlds ugliest ottoman that I found at TJ Maxx.
But the price tag made it pretty. Remember, if a piece is solid you can always change the ugly.
In between the space is a Chinese chest. It is a family heirloom. Mr. Décor’s grandfather helped build the Panama Canal and one of the ships that came through the canal in the 1920’s contained this piece which he bought for something like $20. It is beautifully carved and incredibly solid. I am not sure if it is staying but something of a similar size and scale is needed here.
The wall opposite the Chinese chest contains a set of French doors and a very tiny wall. I placed the file cabinet there as that is what I had to work with. In truth a slightly wider piece would look better, but I’ll beef it up with color and artwork.
So, it looks like a hot mess right now. But in the next post I’ll talk about color selection. It is key to transforming any space into an attractively cohesive room.
I have left the comments open but this reality shot of the contents of my office that have migrated into the adjoining front room wins in getting my full attention at the moment.
Now where is that shovel?