"The Muffled Cries For Help From a Daddy of Four Beautiful Little Girls"

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Old Desks And Some Boards

I generally hate spending money if I don't have to. Here's my latest We-Redid-A-Whole-Room-For-Very-Little-Money Moment.

We used to have our computer in one of those armoir units. We could close the door on it, and no one would ever know there was a computer there.

They'd also have no clue that there were tons of papers and old bills and coupons and checkbooks and pictures and cd's and files and schoolwork and junk mail and half-full drinking glasses and small children inside that thing. I started fearing for my life when I'd open the doors or pull out the sliding keyboard shelf. It had become a black hole of all things office-y, and I couldn't find the important stuff my wife insisted was in there.

So as she prepared for a trip out of town, I plotted how to revamp the whole room in her absence. I'd searched online specifically for L-shaped desks and hutches and anything that would help us utilize our space best. Most importantly, I obsessed over how to do so with little or no money.

As it turned out, we had two different desks around the house or in storage that were neither one being used as desks. One was simply a hamster cage- and crayon-holder. The other was a garage-based dust receptacle.

I moved the armoir and replaced it with the desks, positioning them in a kind of L shape.

But wait. There's more.

I invested only $38 in some fine wood which the nice hardware store people cut for me to make a large counter/surface. I placed the wood on top of the two desks to give the impression that it really was all one fancy L-shaped unit like them top executives in tall buildings have. Then I brought a hutch/shelves out of dust storage as well and put that on top.
My wife is beside herself that I'm posting this picture without giving her a chance to totally clean up the space, but you can imagine that it's generally tidier than this.

I still need to do some trim work and staining and all to make it nice, but for now we have tons of surface space to work at and spread paperwork out while I'm working on taxes. My artist daughter has claimed one spot for her art studio. And under the longer leg of the "L," we've shoved a table that can slide out when we need more space for homeschool work and such.

Overall, I'm very pleased. I'm most satisfied with how much impact was made by simply repurposing furniture we already had.
Speaking of repurposing, here's the old computer cabinet...minus the computer and 12 tons of paper and junk. I'm sure it will get used for something else perfect. Again, imagine my wife horrified that I'm posting this messy atrocity.

We desperately want to get more containers or boxes or baskets to complete the organizational aspects, but we're on our way to a more friendly office/school space. So if you have any suggestions of where to go or what to get to store files or magazines or what-nots, we're open to your ideas.


carrie said...

This is awesome!! It looks great!!

javamamma said...

Aren't you a crafty character? Did you use any tools from Lowes?

And by the way, I'm a nut. Really. ;)

Emily said...

That's a Lowe's worthy project man! Very awesome. I love practical things like that. I bet that blessed the socks off of your wife.

(oh, she'll forget about the messy computer hutch thing in time....don't worry)

oh, and thanks SO much for the offer to guest host my blog. I think I'll pass. But really, that was very, very kind of you. (you meant it to be very,very kind, right?)

Jenny said...

You did well! It looks like a great space to me!

Gayle said...

I had a feeling you were a smarty-pants!

Cindy said...

I can't believe you posted photos of our ONLY messy spot in our entire house. Everything else is SO organized and spotless and super duper clean.

Cindy Swanson said...

Great job, Scott! You've inspired me to tackle some much-needed organization in my own home. OK, I don't actually know when I'm going to do it, but at least you inspired me!

MLW said...

That looks great, Scott! You know, I recommend throwing away all the files and magazines. They take up much less space that way. :-)

Jeni said...

Wow, this is great! Good job!