Great things happen when you are willing to haul your neighbors’ discarded bulk trash down the street at 8:00 am in your PJs while they drive to work in their swanky cars.
Namely, you can makeover a 5 x 10 foot section of your bedroom into a happy, sunshine-filled office for just $200.
This is what I hauled down the street on bulk trash pick up day.
And here’s what my office looked like before.
You can read the rest of that story, as well as how I came up with my plan to makeover my office nook here.
I love my new little office so much. Our house has a study, but it’s been completely taken over by my husband. He’s hung his large collection of soccer scarves along one wall. He’s got a creepy Guy Fawkes mask hanging above the door. He even has a fake skull with scraggly hair hanging by the window.
So I didn’t feel one little bit of guilt over making my corner of the universe as warm and cozy and flower-filled as I wanted, even though it is in our bedroom, which technically should be a shared space.
The hair is really long and scraggly!
I made the curtains myself, and upholstered the chair, both projects I’d never undertaken before.
I don’t know if this is false confidence, but I’m even going to try to keep these plants alive. The only time I could keep plants alive before was when I lived totally alone—no boyfriend, husband, roommate, dog. And definitely no kids. So now that I have three kids, a husband, and a dog to look out for, these plants may be doomed.
I hope not! I’ve been wanting that fiddle-leaf fig for a long time!
My sister-in-law gave me this Liberty of London mug over the summer. Doesn’t it look like it’s been waiting its whole life to hold a bunch of paintbrushes?
The Powerpuff Girls have agreed to look out for me on my new blogging and product-making adventures. Buttercup, in particular, has got my back.
That great painting is by my friend, Austin artist/teacher/community farm leader/all around impressive person Lauren Maples.
After years of making lists, I’m finally embracing the fact that I am a visual person. I made these visual planners to help me keep the big goals in mind (and not get lost in the details, which I so often do).
I couldn’t decide between the black and the green, so I made one of each.
Did you notice the washi tape on the tape dispenser???
How serendipitous is this? I found a planner with a yellow chevron print on the cover. It was even on clearance because someone had written in it, luckily only on the first couple pages. But seriously, who writes in a planner and then returns it? Even I wouldn’t do that.
My kids make a lot of art, and a part of me would like to keep it all. But then there wouldn’t be any room left for the people in our house. So I just keep a few pieces, like this “biography” my son wrote about me a few years ago.
Decorating with kids’ art is a great idea, especially if you don’t put it all together in one place. Just use a piece here or there throughout your home. Here I’ve tied up a necklace my daughter made for me.
I always mean to make an inspiration wall, but in the meantime I have an inspiration pile.
Even magazines can be put to work as a cheerful decoration, especially if they have meaning to you. This Tribeza issue from several years ago featured an article about my old handbag company.
One thing I love about my new office is how there is a repeating pattern of black iron in the structural details. I would really love to get an old rustic architect’s chair to go with my drafting table.
Here is how I spent my money:
$7.85 Upholstery supplies
$21.65 Desk legs
$18.87 Curtain rod & supplies
$5.40 Magazine organizers
I’m proud of myself for finishing this project. I can easily get bogged down in the details and not finish things, especially big projects involving sewing! But I knew at the start of this year that I wanted to create a space just for me—even a tiny one—that filled me with peace and joy. It took a lot longer than I thought it would, but I did it.