Nathan and I purchased our second home together in October 2013. We were looking for a place that was bigger as we prepared for the arrival of our twins that following spring. We were hoping to purchase what would be our “forever home” and had several requirements for it. We didn’t care so much about a lot of things that homebuyers look for these days like granite, stainless steel appliances, and tile showers to name a few. Those things are all super nice, but can be redone easily down the road.
The things on our “must have” list were things that either couldn’t be changed down the road, or would be super difficult/expensive. Our list included the following: must be brick, must have a fireplace (preferably wood burning), must have at least a couple acres of land, must have a full basement, must have large bedrooms, must have a front porch, and must be in a very specific location.
When the perfect house was listed for sale, we called about it just a few hours later. We had an offer on the table the day we looked at it. We loved it and didn’t want it to get away! It was in the perfect location, just a few miles from my parents, was all brick, had a full basement, was situated on over three acres of land and had a wood burning fireplace! It didn’t have a front porch, but maybe someday we’ll add that on.
We love our new house and have enjoyed settling in and making it our own. Part of the process of making a house feel like home is decorating it and “fixing” it to make it work for your family. One thing this house did not have that we didn’t even realize we needed or wanted was an office. After moving in we had our laptops scattered about the house and had our printer plugged in in the basement; not an ideal situation. We had no home base for our laptops, mail, bills, and everyday clutter. Our dining room became the catch all for this type of stuff and it wasn’t pretty.
I started brainstorming. Bingo! I came up with the perfect idea. We decided to convert an upstairs hall closet into an office space. I figured we could do it on a Saturday afternoon. Ehhh, definitely wrong! But several weekends later we had the perfect spot.
We started by removing all the closet type stuff. First the contents of the closet, then the closet rods and hardware, and then the doors.
We decided to line the back wall with 1″x 6″ wood planks to give it some character. But first we had to wire in electricity since it currently had none. My super hero husband figured out how to do that all on his own and took care of that in a few hours. He wired up a spot for a light, a light switch, and two separate electrical outlets.
Then we were able to cut the wood and piece it around the new outlets and light. This was very time consuming and took hours to finish. But I’m so happy we did! It is such a neat touch to what would otherwise be a somewhat boring office space.
The color I used to stain it with was called Weathered Gray. I was a little nervous about choosing to use an actual color and not just a natural wood color stain, but I loved the results. The next challenge was to create a desk. It needed to be built in so it wouldn’t take up too much space. We found a 6′ x 2′ wooden board at Lowe’s and Nathan cut it to fit our space. He notched a spot out of the back of it for our cords to run through. I stained it in Aged Leather and it turned out great! I ended up sanding it twice and putting five coats of polyurethane on it to make it super shiny and durable.
The final step was an office chair. A few weeks earlier my grandparents had found an old chair on the side of the road and they picked it up for me. They know that I like to repurpose and reuse old neglected pieces and they always keep me in mind if they see a treasure on the side of the road. Anyways, I had this old chair and decided to give it a facelift and use it in this space. I sanded it down and spray painted the frame with some spray paint we had in the basement already. After it dried, I sanded parts of it down some to make it seem distressed. I reupholstered the seat in some brown leather that I had left over from a previous project. All in all, the chair ended up being free and only cost me a little bit of work!
At this point, our office was complete! We love the way it turned out.