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Friday, June 20, 2014

Home Office - Anxious to get to the pretty stuff

Summer is finally here in Wisconsin!  It is getting harder to work on the inside when so much is growing on the outside.  Even so, I'm forging ahead.  My room has an energetic feel to it, even if I don't!

I left you last with the building of my file cabinet/shelving units.  I'm still in the process of trimming them out with wood strips to make them look semi-built-in.  In the meantime, I added a window bench.  One of the challenges with this bench is that there is a heating vent and an electrical outlet on the wall below the window.

I built a frame out of 2 x 4's.  I covered the top with 2 pieces of pine.  The back part is only 3 inches wide by 38 inches.  The front is 14 by 38.  Some day I may connect the two with a small piano hinge so I can access the wall outlet.  For now, I just have the boards sitting on top of the frame.

I stained the top of the cabinet which is made of 2 10 inch pieces of 1 inch pine.  I used two stains.  One is a Gel Stain in Walnut.  The other is a regular stain in Red Chestnut.  I layered these on about 2-3 times to come up with a color that very closely matches my desk finish.

I finished installing my base boards and much to my daughter's dismay I put them on both the wall and the bottom edges of the cabinets and window seat.  I still think it makes it look more built in.

I will add a decorative metal sheet on the front side of the bench so air can flow through from the heater vent.

Now on to the even more fun stuff - Accessory shopping.  I did some shopping in my home looking at pictures my daughter painted.  Not sure what I'm going to pick, but here are some examples:


I found the striped pillows at Pier 1 and the buttoned pillow at World Market.  I should have started shopping at World Market as their prices are more reasonable than Pier 1.  I still love both stores.

Unfortunately, I cannot keep these door knobs intended for the closet doors.  The screws are not long enough to fit all the way through.

I have just under $100.00 left of my $3000.00 budget which was spread across 3 rooms.  I think my budget is doing great.  There are some things I want that just won't make it into this challenge, but I still think I'll end up with 3 rooms I love.  As for the time left to finish - that is going quickly.  If you haven't seen it already, take a look at the countdown on the left side of this blog page.  Yikes!  We better get shopping! 

Here are some links I've enjoyed browsing -

Enough shopping!  I have to get to work.  More building, painting, sewing, breathing, etc.  Time is ticking.  See you in two weeks.

Friday, June 6, 2014

Home Office - Building from the ground (floor) up

I had the best intentions to have a big build during the previous weekend since spending time at the lake cottage was planned for this weekend.  Unfortunately, I ended up with a fever and was down and out for 2 nights and a day or so.  I was able to get moving enough to put my file cabinet/shelving system together, but before I show you the results, you have to see how our cat, Woodstock, appreciates the new bathroom sink!

The plan for the home office is to have 2 file cabinets made from 2 dressers with 4 drawers each topped with shelving.  I transformed the dressers into file cabinets in my last post.  I bought 9 1 x 10 pine boards, 6 feet in length for the shelves.  I painted them with Dove White paint before putting them together.

Leisure painting in the garage

I built a base for each file cabinet using 2 x 4's.

I then positioned the cabinet to the front of the base and screwed the cabinet to the base.

I added 3/4 inch plywood painted Dove White to the sides of the cabinets flush with the front.

back view
side view
I topped the cabinet with unpainted plywood.  The reason for cladding the cabinet with wood is to add extra support for the shelving that will sit on top of the file cabinets.  These cabinets were purchased as dressers from a St Vincent De Paul Store for the size of their drawers and their potential to be turned into the lateral file cabinets I've been looking for for some time.  Although they will hold my files, I wasn't so sure they were sturdy enough to hold additional shelving as well.
front view

Now, of course, this wasn't an error free process.  Once the cabinet was clad with supporting plywood, I intended to paint the entire cabinet white and top it with a piece of solid wood that would be stained a dark wood stain to match my desk.   These pictures from my last post show my error in determining whether a door is solid wood or hollow core.

I thought that the thin wood outline on a heavy door meant it was veneer over solid wood.

Not solid wood!  Just a bunch of strips making this door heavy.

The door halves sat on top of my cabinets for sometime while I tried to consider how I could trim out the units to make them look like a custom cabinet rather than a jumble of wood.  My faithful advisor has been home from Grad School to help discuss the pros and cons of my ideas and we both came to the conclusion that I needed to scrap the hollow core door pieces and purchase some real wood.

As it turns out, I found 2 6 foot pieces of 1 x 10 pine in our garage under a bunch of other wood.  This made all my ideas for trimming the units with other wood I had on hand make sense, so I was able to proceed.

I placed the newly found pine on top of the cabinets and then topped them with a shelving unit to see how everything would look.  Nothing here is connected together and the final paint touch ups and staining of the new pine topper are not done, but it shows that the end is near as I'm liking the result so far.

The drawers will be painted white

I'm interested in hearing from anyone reading this what items I should place on these shelves.  How should I inject color?  Should I add books, office supplies, or decorative pieces.  What would you do?