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After showing you all my fluffed up dining room a few weeks ago (I still just love it!), I figured it was finally time to share undoubtedly my favorite home project . . . maybe ever? As I've shared before, the money that I make on PPP doesn't get spent, however after working for three years at this blogging thing from my living room couch, my husband and I finally decided to use a portion of the earnings we've saved towards a home office.
I would love to tell you that it was incredibly penny-pinched, and that I sewed each pillow by hand and my husband built the cabinets himself. But, that's just not the case. I spend anywhere from 30-40 hours on the computer each week, haul three kids all over town for their activities, do laundry, iron clothes, make beds, scrub toilets, and cook dinner almost every night. So, there's not a whole lot of time left these days to tackle any huge projects myself! But, I couldn't be more pleased with the results of this update, even if it did cost quite a few pennies. (Remember how I've shared it's important not to sacrifice what you want right now for what you really want? This is one of those times that waiting was oh-so-worth it for us. . . even if it did take several years to get here!)
Ready to see it? Here you go . . . (soooooo exciting!)
This is what the room looked like before we painted and any of the bookshelves went in . . . (so dark!)our awesome builder these cabinets on Pinterest, and he did an amazing job re-creating them to fit in our home!) do this but haven't had time to figure it out yet . .. ) Because the room is at the front of the house, I wanted closed cabinets to hide things in. The cabinets are ridiculously deep (my husband thought I was crazy), but I love that I can even store large storage bins in them. They also have electricity inside the cabinets so our printers and even my Cricut is inside the cabinets! Here's the couch my husband picked out so that he could come sit and hang out with me while I work . . . 😉 And a favorite old chair of mine in the corner that my kids pull up to work on homework next to me . . .
Our builder was Dean with Dean's Specialty Woodworks, and both he and his workers were just fantastic (I really can't say enough good things about them!) If you're looking for a cabinet builder in the North Alabama area, he does an amazing job and I would definitely recommend them. While I'm far from a decorator, I do love pretty things and am so happy with my new space ~ it's like having an extra 12×12 room added on because when it was a “formal” living room we never walked in the room at all!
I will tell you that this was a very hard decision to build as I know there are so many that go daily without so much. I felt some serious guilt trying to decide if I could just continue the way I had been working, because I know there are so many out there in need. However, at least for now, I've come to the place where having an office has made me so much more efficient. (Prior to the office, my bookkeeping was in the kitchen, our printers in the guest bedroom, and our files in the playroom . . . it was a mess!) So, having things a little more organized will hopefully make me more effective as we really do try to save, give, and live an incredibly blessed life.
I'd love for you to join me over on Pinterest (I love that place!) If you have a blog and have done a little fluffing in your home, I’d love to see it, so leave your link in the comments section. Also, if there’s a craft you’ve seen on a website that you’re hoping to make, feel free to share that link as well (I’m always looking for new ideas!) See more previous Friday Fluff Up projects and ideas . . . and Happy Fluffing!
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I love your front door what is the name of that color? I’m wanting to brighten my front door with some sort of blue/green but nice and bright
Judy Beauchamp says
Where did you get your gorgeous pillows for the couch? beautiful room!
What is the paint color? The room is wonderful. Thanks,
Thanks Becky! The paint color is Benjamin Moore Hollingsworth Green – I think it’s more blue than green but love it! Hope that helps 🙂
Kathy Harrington says
I absolutely love your couch… Can I ask where you got it? It looks just like the style and size that I want and need….thanks! And. ……. You did a wonderful job on your office, ENJOY!
jayme @ No Regrets Living says
It looks wonderful! I some day plan on doing a (semi-) major rehaul of our main floor spaces and I’ll likely spend a lot of money (relatively compared to just painting a room). But I figure that’s why I save money in other areas – to be able to splurge in areas that I care about.
Plus, I love using professionals when it makes sense — they’re providing for their families too while using the gifts God has given them. Beautiful room!
I agree Jayme! We save on so many things that this was one area to splurge – and it was wonderful to support a fantastic company who did great work for us. So glad there are other ways we can save so we can spend on other things ~ thanks for your encouragement!
Gina Bieller says
Also love all of our tips and time you spend finding savings
Gina Bieller says
Where did you get your cabinets from. I would love to do this in the future, I work at home and use my computer space 24-7.
Maria Skinner says
Love, love, LOVE your new office!!!!
Thanks Alice! 🙂
Jennifer G. says
Ok, I’m being annoying with the comments, last one, I promise! But what is the name of the paint color you used in there? It’s lovely and what I think I was going for in my kitchen, but mine ended up a little on the baby-blue side…..
Jennifer G. says
Oh, and tell your hubby great job on picking out that couch! What a perfect piece for that space. Well done!
Jennifer G. says
WOW!!! That looks gorgeous!!!! How nice to have such a peaceful, clutter-free room to work in. I love it!
Kim S. says
Laurie, I just wanted to take a moment to tell you, let go of the guilt. Yes, I know there are so many people hurting financially. As Jesus said, “the poor will always be with us”. I have read the scripture many times as I myself struggle with “purchase” guilt. I grew up living below the poverty level. With God’s grace I worked hard to graduate college (the first in my family to do so). My husband comes from an upper middle income family. They are hardworking (60hrs+a week) small business owners. In today’s economy, we struggle often just to make payroll. But in years past, we enjoyed “the fruits of our labor”. From my perspective wealth or possessions are not sinful; but it is where our heart lies. If we put our faith in our wealth, and our trust in ourselves to provide we are wrong. I know of so many people whose money is a stumbling block. Years ago, I had a favorite contempo Christian song. It is message was where your heart lies so is your treasure. We have always trusted Jesus both in the time of feast and in famine. From your blog, it seems both you and your husband are hardworking people, trusting Jesus. You are obviously frugal. But even more importantly: You ARE generous! Your passion is helping people like me save money, and continue even in hard times to give to those in need. And that, in my opinion, is a ministry. By having a beautiful, organized space, you will probably become even more productive. More productive with less output and lowered stress is is a blessing that will affect everyone including your readers. Sorry this was so long; I just felt impressed to comment. God Bless You and all You do for your readers!. P.S. The redo is amazing, simply beautiful.
Kim ~ thank you so very much for taking the time to comment. It is such a fine line I think… maybe especially when we’ve grown up differently (and know there are so many in need), it’s so easy to feel like we don’t “deserve” more. I feel incredibly (crazy!) blessed, and really never thought I would be fortunate enough to have all that I do. Thanks so much though for your kind encouragement… I pray that my heart always lies on the side of giving more (it sounds like yours is there already!) And, I have been so much more productive having a space of my own, so hopefully it will help me and PPP become more productive. Thank you!!!!! 🙂
Beautiful room Laurie. Do you have a picture of the whole room’s set up? I am thinking of doing this and our living rooms look very similiar. Thanks.
I don’t have a good picture of it all – but if you can imagine when you walk in the room there are two windows to the left, a long wall (where the couch is) straight ahead, and the cabinets are to the right. It’s kind of the classic living room many houses have (but tiny!) Hope that helps …. at least a little. It took us forever to figure out how to set it up (especially with the sofa), but I’m really pleased with it! 🙂
Laurie, can you tell me where you got that fab Rabbit pillow that is on your couch?
My sister-in-law gave me a gift certificate to Ballard Designs for Christmas, and I found it there on clearance! I don’t see any more available on their site 🙁 (I also got the topiary from Pottery Barn and brown baskets as gifts…. my favorite way to decorate is using gift cards from birthday and Christmas!)
Laurie – Nice!! I love it!!! It is beautiful and I am sure a lovely place to work (at all hours ; )
Thanks Kate! (You know how many hours I’m hanging out there… crazy!!!!) 🙂
LOVE! It is so gorgeous! After much discernment, we have decided to stay in our 3 bedroom house even though our family is sort of growing out of it. It doesn’t bother us at all and it allows for so much more flexibility in other areas of our budget, but the one minor struggle we have with this space is the lack of an office. Our master bedroom is overrun with a large desk, computer, file cabinet, craft supplies, etc. It is definitely not a peaceful sanctuary, and if my kids play on the computer, it is even less so! I would love to build something like this in the living room to make it blend with the rest of the space and look attractive. I will definitely keep your builder in mind – thanks for the referral!
I really didn’t know how to make it work….but am so glad that we decided to figure out how to work with what they have. He really can customize anything you find, and while it’s not very inexpensive, if it saves you buying a new house it’s definitely worth it! I *love* having my own place to work ~ but of course, my kids now just follow me in here. 😉
Do your kids use your computer? Or another one? I actually think it is better to have the “family” computer in the common living space so you can keep an eye on what they are doing. And it seems that whenever I sit down at ours in the bedroom, they all follow me in here anyway. 😉 I just love what you did. The whole room is so warm and inviting! Enjoy!
Our family room and living room (now office) are pretty close to each other, and they usually use the main computer in the office while I use the laptop. To be honest, they don’t play all that often on it, but I’m always nearby! Before our desktop was up in the playroom, and I hated them having access to it without me anywhere around, so I like that this is right in our family’s space! You’re right …. with kids having the computer where everyone “is” makes monitoring it so much easier! 🙂