Style Bee - Office Reveal

Home Office Reveal

03.09.16

Style Bee - Office Reveal

Welcome to my home office! I’m so happy to finally be sharing this room reveal with you. It’s been a really long time in the making but putting the final touches on the room just couldn’t be rushed.

If I’ve learned anything from our home renovations, it’s that nothing happens quickly. No matter how menial or seemingly simple the task, it’s just not. But perseverance pays off and this bright, happy little space is the result of many long days, lots of late nights, devotion to painstaking details, truck loads of debris, several cans of paint and more IKEA cabinet hacking than any sane person would recommend. But Dave is an absolute hero, his hard work totally paid off and I couldn’t be happier to spend my days (and most of my nights) in this serene spot.

I’ll start by sharing a few grisly before photos so you can get a sense of where we started. Then I’ll quickly list out all the updates we made and then it’s time for the good stuff, a 360 photo tour of the space and how each little nook and cranny has a special purpose.


BEFORE

Style Bee - Office Reveal

Style Bee - Office Reveal - Before

Style Bee - Office Reveal - Before


UPDATES

  1. Replaced all the wall-mounted electrical, with interior wiring and brought it up to code.
  2. Ripped out the plaster and lath walls, insulated and put up new drywall.
  3. Replaced the windows and trim (Dave made custom sills for the windows).
  4. Reconfigured the doorway to line up with the largest interior wall.
  5. Replaced the door and all base boards.
  6. Ripped out the dysfunctional wardrobe cupboards and opened up the storage area where the weird little brown door was (we called that the murder closet and it was lined with stained 60 yr old wallpaper, so creepy!).
  7. Custom fit 3 IKEA Pax wardrobes into the far wall for useful storage.
  8. Painted the ceiling and walls a fresh bright white.
  9. Installed custom cut IKEA kitchen lower cabinets as built-in desk storage.
  10. Installed a white countertop for a sturdy functional desktop.
  11. Created a hat wall to store and display my collection.
  12. Hung a Stendig Calendar as functional art and a simple shelf to house prints and plants.
  13. Added a second desk as a prop styling, craft and sewing station.
  14. Layered vintage killim rugs and a sheepskin to warm up the space.
  15. Added a classic Herman Miller chair and Anglepoise lamp to finish off the workspace.

AFTER

Style Bee - Office Reveal

Ta-da! The finished office! I’m so proud of what Dave was able to make of this wonky little spare bedroom. He transformed it into a beautiful, functional home office that I feel extremely lucky to work in every day. As someone who’s been working from home for about 6 years now, I can say it’s worth every penny and extra bit of effort to have a space that’s bright, fresh and a true pleasure to work in. It makes the late nights, long hours and stressful deadlines that much easier to bear.

Now I’ll walk you through the space starting with the entrance and going clockwise around to finish at the desk area. It’s a not a big room but it’s my little creative haven. 


DOORWAY

It’s been a while since we finished the bare bones of this room reno and until I was writing this post I forgot a few things ever even happened. Like the fact that Dave actually demolished the previous doorway, which was an awkward, useless little tunnel into the room and reframed the entrance so the door would run flush to the main wall where my desk sits. This helped make the landing at the top of the stairs (just outside the door) much more open and bright. Now the space behind the door is where I keep my seamless paper rolls and matte boards for flatlays.

Style Bee - Office Reveal

STORAGE

In general, houses built before the 1900s had little to no storage included. Closets were not a thing (armoires though, all the rage) and neither were 90 degree angles, at least, they weren’t a priority! So we had to brute force our way into opening up what tiny storage space there was and figure out the best way to make it useful and elegant. Because a stairway runs behind the wall where the closets are we could only have upper shelving for most of the wall. We did manage to make a couple cabinets and a large wardrobe fit and it’s made all the difference. I’m able to keep my books, craft supplies, camera, props and extra bedding in these uppers and all my sweaters, pants, accessories and shoes in the larger closet beside.

Style Bee - Office Reveal

Style Bee - Office Reveal

Style Bee - Office Reveal

PHOTO WALL

I get asked a lot about where and how I take my outfit photos in the studio and it’s really nothing fancy! I position the tripod in the doorway, roll out a piece of seamless paper on the floor (where the carpets are below), stand where the clothes rack is and snap away! I’m lucky that the space is nice and bright so I can get away with natural light for all my photography.

Style Bee - Office Reveal

STYLING + SEWING STATION

I really didn’t want to fill up too much of the space in this room but after about 8 months of working in it I found it would be really helpful to have an additional desk space in the corner. One I could use for prop styling, good portrait lighting and eventually a sewing station. I’ve yet to get started with a proper sewing project but there a few ideas in the works! Right now this spot is looking pretty with lots of plants, books, candles and a few boxes of sewing supplies all organized.

Style Bee - Office Reveal

Style Bee - Office Reveal

Style Bee - Office Reveal

Style Bee - Office Reveal

DESK

Now it’s time to dig into the best part of the room which is my desk area! I agonized over ways to style this space for way too long and frankly, I have to blame Pinterest for my inability to make a decision. There are so many pin-perfect workspaces out there that I was almost paralyzed by all the design inspiration. In the end I just decided to forget about every one else and focus on adding elements that were practical, fresh and simple. The first element was my hat wall, which I am still obsessed with. Next came the Stendig calendar which I’d been hoping to get for ages. Then finally I found some art that I loved, the perfect vessels for my green buddies and a minimal shelf to hold them all on. The space finally feels complete but not crowded or cluttered.

Style Bee - Office Reveal

Style Bee - Office Reveal

Style Bee - Office Reveal

Style Bee - Office Reveal

Style Bee - Office Reveal

Style Bee - Office Reveal

Style Bee - Office Reveal

Style Bee - Office Reveal

Then of course there’s my furry office manager who mostly just sleeps on the job and announces deliveries but he’s the cutest company so we keep him around. 


SOURCES

Desks, Closets, Countertop, Base Cabinets and Wall Shelf all IKEA

Chair Herman Miller

Pillow Vintage

Mouse Pad Etsy

Carafe IKEA

Lamp Anglepoise

Stapler Schoolhouse

Agenda Marjolein Delhaas

Notepads Moleskin

Pencil Caddy Convivial Production

Glasses Warby Parker

Rugs Vintage

Clothes Rack IKEA

Calendar Stendig (avail. on eBAY)

Plant Vessels Convivial Production

Brass Spritzer MΓΌr Lifestyle

Monstera Ladies Artwork by Yvonne Weiss

Copper Scissors Mjolk

Hand Cream Aesop

Small Woven Basket MΓΌr Lifestyle


Thanks for checking out my office renovation! What do you think? Do you have any workspace or desktop must-haves for where you spend your 9-5?

21 comments
03.09.16
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Leave me a comment here!

  1. Cat says:

    I LOVE this space. That “Start Somewhere” print is an “inspiring” piece I could actually get behind- where is it from? Thanks!

  2. Alissa Marie says:

    Wow. With every room reveal all I can think is, “yup. I would live there.” It is so personalized and home-y feeling and yet minimalistic and sparse at the same time. You both deserve a nice pat on the back for the long endured reno–it is well worth it! Seeing a reveal on HGTV after a 30 minute montage, you forget that it is blood, sweat and many tears that go into an overhaul like this!!

    As for your backdrop props, might I ask how wide your paper roll is? I don’t know if I’ve seen such a long roll before! Or the size of your matte board/where you sourced it from? I help with some food photography for work and have rigged together some kooky backdrops and always looking for a better option that may be more enduring and seamless πŸ™‚

    • Thanks so much Alissa Marie! I really appreciate the kind words πŸ™‚ I WISH it was just a matter of a 30-second montage! haha

      I use either the slate grey or thunder grey seamless paper rolls by Superior Backgrounds via Vistek. They are 53″ x 36′, about $45 and usually last me several months and TONS of shoots. I also use large size matte boards from my local art store/framing shop. Those are 40′ x 32′ and great for flatlays and product photography.

      Hope that helps! xo

  3. Katrina says:

    Everything you do is so aesthetically inspiring for me!

    I need that leather mousepad, but the link you posted isn’t working. Any chance you could fix it? I completely trust your Etsy recommendations after ordering the Turkish towels you recommended. Thanks so much!

  4. Suzi says:

    So beautiful!! I am literally obsessed with your hat collection; I love the hat wall as a way of displaying them. Every outfit with that Janessa Leone hat is allllllll heart eyes.

    And I actually just started a new job– the job itself is great, but our actual cubicles are so depressingly old, I’m having a hard time getting anywhere near fresh, clean, or simple. Do you have any suggestions for smaller edits that could make a workplace feel better to work in?

    • Thanks so much Suzi! I was never a hat person until I started blogging, but now I’m full on obsessed haha. The wall was the only way I could think to store them properly and it turned into a great focal point in the room.

      Congrats on the new job!! Cubicles are tough to make feel bright and fresh but I always suggest adding something living like a cacti or a succulent that doesn’t need a lot of direct sunlight. One or two of those in a white ceramic vessel instantly brightens a space up. I also like the idea of a simple black and white print with a wide white matte and a white frame. You can rest it on your desk or use a removable hanger for the wall. I also suggest some white or balsa wood file holders from IKEA and a fun desk caddy to hold your pens and scissors etc. Those are all things you can take with you too once you’re ready to change offices. Hope that helps!! xo

  5. Love the space. I’m kicking myself for not getting one of those calendars when they were readily available around Christmas time!

    Would love to hear sometime how you were able to begin working from home, did you start in an office and branch out? Was it hard to build a customer base? Thank you! πŸ™‚

    • Thanks so much Carlyn! I know, they go so fast, I’m already anxious about getting next years! haha I don’t know why they don’t just make way more.

      My ‘day job’ is with my family’s advertising business and that has allowed me to work from home. My Dad founded the company when he was ready to let go of the corporate ad agency structure and start his own small shop just after I graduated from uni. He had a lot of contacts from many years in the business and from there word of mouth has been our best marketing strategy. I don’t talk about my full-time job on here much as our clients are quite corporate and a lot of them are pharmaceutical brands. I’m working on turning my blog into a full-time gig in 2017 so I’ll let you know how that goes! xo

  6. Sophie says:

    Wow!! Looks so nice!

  7. Sherra Chan says:

    I love it!!!! πŸ™‚ Can’t wait to get to design my own office room someday. πŸ™‚

    • Thanks so much Sherra! It was so fun but so agonizing at the same time! I have major fear of putting the wrong holes in the wall haha. But I’m happy with the end result. I’m sure your office will be gorgeous πŸ™‚ xo

  8. Victoria B says:

    Love it! Great work. This is major home office inspiration for me as I am trying to finish mine up.

  9. Jodie says:

    Congrats Dave on a job well done! What a bright, cozy office space! I’ve been working from home for 4 months now, and can definitely see how useful this is.
    If Dobby is anything like Emmitt, he thinks it’s all for him? Lol!
    Have a great day Lee!

    • Thanks so much Jodie! You are so good πŸ™‚ Oh Dobby is certain our lives revolve around him entirely (and he’s not totally wrong!) haha. Emmitt must love having you home. They are the best company aren’t they? xo

  10. Poonam says:

    Lee, the space is sublime! You and Dave did a fantastic reno job with your home as whole, this space being no exception. Your refined approach to style is extended seamlessly to this office and it’s a testament to how you really are a fantastic editor. Enjoy the fruits of your labour, lady!

    • Poonam! You are so sweet! Thank you for being such a positive force and support over the years. I really do appreciate it πŸ™‚ It also means so much coming from such a talented and savvy woman! It’s so easy to second guess yourself in this crazy day and age of Pin-perfection and Insta-worthiness. Thanks again beauty. All the best. xo