I’ve slowly collected items for the new wall collage in the office (read more about the inspiration here) and while it’s not finished, here’s a quick update on the progress.
Here’s the before where I took my favorite layout from this post and hung paper cut outs on the wall to get a better visual. Then up went the frames with their original artwork:
Some of the frames were cool garage sale finds, like this vintage guy that just needed a new photo. Actually the Chinese ship was very neat, but it didn’t work here. The bummer was that this frame had a paper backing and was oh-so-old, but I carefully removed the paper with an X-ACTO knife (the company sent me several to play with and I keep them in my pen container on my desk I use it so much), replaced the aged matting and added an illustration of birds – another garage sale find.
The wall didn’t look quite right – it needed more uniformity. I decided that while the frames matched in an un-matching sort of way, the mattes needed to be more in line. In terms of matting photos, I don’t stray from white or linen (the textural, grasscloth sort – not just the color) and so I shopped my usual matte locales: eBay, Etsy, Aaron Brother’s, Michael’s and even a few local mom & pop shops. Ebay and Etsy didn’t carry linen – and Aaron Brother’s and my local mom & pop stores (which I love supporting) quoted between $25-50/matte. Craziness. Michael’s came through with a low $10ish for a custom matte (which is awesome!) and I placed my order.
A few custom mattes with brighter, cheerier images has left me here:
The large watercolor was painted by Kevin’s Grandma, the floral arrangement is a favorite artist of mine (more on that soon…), the lower left landscape was a souvenir from our travels, and the beautiful blue butterfly was a recent find in Charleston, SC. I’ve searched high and wide for ethically conserved butterflies (aka not killing them to frame them) and I found a great source – this artist collects butterflies that have already died on his butterfly farm.
I haven’t yet found the perfect piece for that oval frame up top but I’m thinking of showcasing an object on matte board rather than a photo (sort of like the butterfly). The more and more I look at the collage the more I’m thinking that I might have to replace the large frame’s matte for a white one – and that maybe the painting needs a new home and a ‘brighter’ family photo or illustration should take its place. The walls are so dark and the images play a huge role in brightening or darkening that corner.
There you have it! That’s the latest update.
For more Office Makeover posts, check out: organizing the bookshelves, wall collage part 1, fabric bulletin board inspiration, (new) inspiration board, new lamps, wallpapering open shelves, finding the perfect credenza, new trim, dining table-to-desk, a new desk & bookshelves, installing remnant carpeting, grasscloth wallpaper, painting the office nook, finding carpet for the office, chocolate brown wall ideas, plastering progress, inspiration for a diy desk, back in action!, desking hunting for under $300, bookcases under $300,inspirational rooms, room layout options, demo part 1 & demo part 2.
Tags: Decorating, DIY, Home, Office
Posted in DIY, Home, Our Guestroom/Office, Renovating Adventures | 4 Comments »
My office is now in functioning form. It’s not finished but it’s an open space for me to disappear to every day to log hours and to finish both work and fun projects.
I love having my own space! It’s wonderful. Every detail has been so liberating – from organizing my file structure and having a place to store work materials (my 9-5 job), to finding a home for every little craft object that participates in the clutter of everyday life around here.
Here’s a sneak peek at my organizing in action, please ignore those crazy wires (need to find a solution for those soon):
That’s a new curtain, too! I created that for this project early last year and realized very recently how perfect it was color-wise for this space – it’s Cassandra Seaspray and it can be found here. The french doors between the kitchen and office are glass so it can be difficult to ‘disappear’ when Liv’s nanny is over to help play with her while I’m working. Plus, guests get a little privacy in the room.
Here’s the desk – clean and clear. Knowing me that won’t last long.
I used a combination of Target and One Kings Lane fabric boxes, See Jane Work brown portfolio boxes and metal baskets, and West Elm white lacquer magazine butlers and file cabinets to outfit the shelves. The look I’m hoping to achieve is organic – plenty of mixed textures and naturals colors.
I’ve learned an important lesson after having a few work spaces: you must love your organizational tools and the way your office looks when tidy, or you’ll never aspire to it at the end of a long day.
That big gap there on the left is where the printer will sit. It’s nice and close – none of this wireless business that would *sometimes* allow the computer to communicate with the printer on its own free will.
Here’s an angle of the desk and left bookshelf. I have to soak in as much clean and clear desk as I can now… it may be a while after my organized desktop chaos takes over.
Treasures include an estate sale yellow glass candy jar that doubles as nook to stash rolls of ribbon, a wax bird from West Elm (on sale) a See Jane Work metal basket that houses fabric remnants I’m currently working with (the rest are sorted by color in the big OKL fabric boxes at the bottom of the shelf) and a favorite photo of Liv and I printed on glass (have you heard of Fracture? I discovered it through a Groupon). I still need to take some time to label all of the boxes. Labeling, labeling is awesome.
I brought this ceramic urn back with me after our trip to Iowa for RAGBRAI. I found it at a little garden shop in Woodward, IA and managed to stuff it in my suitcase. Now it’s home to paint swatches that we frequently pull out when working on the house.
All the while I was working on this particular afternoon, Liv gleefully watched on from her chair in the kitchen. Moms have got to take full advantage of nap and meal times!
Ordering all of the office organizational supplies can be a daunting task, and I find that having a clear layout where each and every object will go is helpful. I made this rough sketch before purchasing supplies and it helped to determine how many of what was actually needed.
I deviated from plan a bit, but all in all I’m less distracted and more on target with a careful plan laid out in advance.
Man this is a tough room to photograph – too narrow! But here’s one last shot before all the techy stuff is added back in:
PS I need a camera expert – what’s the ideal setting for indoor photos? What a steep learning curve this new SLR camera is! Indoor photos especially…
For more Office Makeover posts, check out: wall collage part 1, fabric bulletin board inspiration, (new) inspiration board, new lamps, wallpapering open shelves, finding the perfect credenza, new trim, dining table-to-desk, a new desk & bookshelves, installing remnant carpeting, grasscloth wallpaper, painting the office nook, finding carpet for the office, chocolate brown wall ideas, plastering progress, inspiration for a diy desk, back in action!, desking hunting for under $300, bookcases under $300,inspirational rooms, room layout options, demo part 1 & demo part 2.
Tags: Decorating, DIY, Home, Office
Posted in Home, Organizing, Our Guestroom/Office, Renovating Adventures | 6 Comments »
I’ve been jumping all over the place when it comes to finishing up this office. My corkboard project is taking muuuuch longer than anticipated and while I wait on the prime opportunity between work and Liv’s naps to nail gun that frame together, I’ve started experimenting with the wall collage for the guestroom portion of the office.
Wall collages! They’re awesome. It’s all about how many photos can I stuff on a wall creatively. Here’s some of the inspiration that I’m working with:
But this image really nails it on the head:
There’s something about that cluster of pictures that I’m especially drawn to. Love the neutral theme and the natural wood frames (kind of matches the theme of the office) and the organized chaos that the wall evokes.
But the wall collage isn’t all about slapping pictures up on the wall. I want each and every photo, painting and object to mean something to our family. Maybe a souvenir from a trip, an art project by one of Kevin’s amazingly crafty family members or a photo of a place that we love.
So while I hunt down the perfect pieces (I know they’re buried around here somewhere… I just need to hunt – aka ‘shop’ the house and garage) here are a few layouts that I think will look great on that dark brown wall in the guestroom:
Or maybe this one:
I’m a visual person. I need to see just how the artwork (or bookshelf, closet or anything else I’m organizing) will look before committing. Especially to lathe and plaster walls! These poor walls can only take so many misaligned holes. I’ve learned the hard way.
PS I’m just beginning to really use the magical tool of Pinterest… for more beautiful wall collage inspiration, check out my board here.
Tags: Decorating, DIY, Home, Office
Posted in Home, Our Guestroom/Office, Renovating Adventures | 5 Comments »