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Saturday, October 22, 2011

Display shelves for the crafting/study area

Some people have the luxury of a separate room to call their office, craft space, or sewing room. I don't. I have read lots of debates in the home decor blogosphere about office spaces in the bedroom. I understand the point of view that a bedroom should be relaxing and tranquil, a place to get away from the work and projects of the day. That is a very nice idea. But for some of us, it just isn't feasible to keep our sleeping quarters totally separate from our at-home workspace.

Because I live in a shared apartment with roommates, the only space that can truly be "mine" is in my bedroom.  I am lucky, though, to have a fairly large room of my own to work with. I wanted to create a space that would fit in with the feel of my room, but still be very functional. I decided I wanted to build shelves above my desk both for display and to store craft supplies.

I recently rearranged my room, and my desk ended up in the little nook created by a former doorway. I have been so inspired by the closets turned to offices (or cloffices) I have seen on the web in the last few years, and I wish I had a closet to use for that purpose. Since I don't (I don't have a closet at all in fact!) I thought the moulding of this doorway frame could at least give the illusion of a "nook" in which to make my office/craft space.

To start I did some measurements, and bought some lumber. Then I felt a little overwhelmed, so I got some help.

My boyfriend Ben drew out this plan and remeasured everything for me. He's better at this sort of thing, and drafting seems to make him happy, where as it seems to make me an anxious wreck.
I know you dig that teal nail polish I got going on.

Then I let him do the dirty work of cutting down the lumber to size, too:
And then I let him mount the shelves, make sure they were level, and install the vertical supports. Yep, I pretty much just made him do everything. Oops. Well, besides the painting. I did all the painting. Oh, actually, he did paint on the primer... But anyways.

One thing I actually can take credit for in this project, is the paint color. I am far too proud of myself, really, because if anyone asks me what color I choose, I get to say "it's custom." I have a lot of near empty or half full cans of painting hanging out in my hardware closet (what, you don't have a whole closet devoted to hardware supplies, tools and paint?) and so instead of having to pay for more paint to get the right color, I recalled the color wheel from my art class days. I had a pale blue, an electric green, a charcoal gray and a deep turquoise among other colors, and I got to mixing.

Here you can see a bit of color testing, including some combinations I made myself. I ended up going with the slightly darker pale turquoise tone, which you can see on the far right. It was just a bit more muted than the brighter blue, and I didn't think I'd like it, but once it was on the wall I knew it was the one.

And the building began. We (can I say we?) used simple L brackets to attach the cut 1x4s to the wall, made sure everything was level, and then added vertical supports from remaining pieces of lumber.

Next came priming and painting the wood shelves, caulking any gaps, and touching up the background color.

I have yet to feel really satisfied with the styling of these shelves, I want to take some time and collect some quirky items that make me happy to live on these shelves, along with my jars of art supplies. Here's the styling as it exists now...Surely I will make an update later when I decide exactly what I want up here.

Do you have a work or craft space in your home? In your bedroom? Have you undertaken any minor or major building projects recently? How do you feel about drafting and measuring-- boring or rewarding and pleasurable?


  1. Oh my gosh! This is awesome and I am in love with that shade of blue!

  2. @Becky- thanks! I'm loving having the extra storage display space now as well as the pop of color. now i just need get on styling it.


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