More office progress

Little by little, I am determined to get our office space/bonus/music/guest room done without getting sidetracked by other DIY projects. I now have two throw pillows sewn and I finished the “music corner.” 

I used all the fabric I had left over from the curtains to make the pillows. 

I can sew together this particular style of throw pillow in about a half hour. I use two equal pieces of fabric lined up together with the “wrong” side of the fabric facing out on both sides. Then I eyeball and sew a half-inch hem on all four sides, leaving about 4-5 inches open at one end.

Then I turn the pillow inside out, feeding the fabric through the hole. I stuff the pillow with polyester fiberfill and, finally, I hand-stitch the hole shut.

Now I have two throw pillows in the bonus room that match the curtains.

I really want to sew one more accent pillow using scrap fabric in a different pattern, but I haven’t gotten to that yet.

For wall art in the “music corner” of the room, I purchased three wall hooks for instruments. I paid $11 total for them on Amazon.

My next goal for the space is to refinish a bookshelf for the other side of the room and spruce up the entertainment center.

Why DIY projects are you working on? Are you finding it hard to stay focused?

Office progress

Well, we officially made it through middle sis’s wedding. Life for our family got really hectic around last Thursday and things are just now starting to return to normal.

If you’ve been keeping up, you know I had to clean my hot mess of a bonus room and get it looking presentable pronto because the bridal party was staying at my house the night before the wedding. I did manage to make that happen, thanks to a lot of help from the hubster.

We girls had a pretty relaxing time before the big day. Oh, except when sis turned on our upstairs guest shower (it was the first time it was used since we changed the plumbing fixtures in there). Apparently, a pipe behind the drywall isn’t tight and, as a result, those of us sitting at the kitchen table downstairs got a shower, too, when water literally started raining out of the pendant lights. Oh, the joys of DIY projects.

Anyhoo, that fix is a post for another day. Let me show you what I’ve actually accomplished so far in the office/guest room/music room above our garage.

Office renovation

We painted the space in Valspar’s Oatlands Subtle Taupe (eggshell) from Lowes. It has a really light, soft gray tint to it.

The executive desk and credenza came from Home Decorators Collection. I used a 15-percent off coupon plus free shipping to bring down the price a bit. Between these two very necessary pieces of furniture, I was able to get all my office supplies organized and paperwork filed (finally). The desk chair was purchased long ago at a hotel auction. I think I paid $5 for it. The slipcover came from Kmart.

OK, now let’s talk curtains.

I purchased this fabric for 40-percent off at Jo-Ann Fabric & Craft Store. I paid a little less than $40 for around six yards of it, which gave me enough to make two panels plus two throw pillows for the sofa bed.

How I sew drapery panels

I’m sure there are probably rules for how to properly sew drapes. I follow the “let’s whip out some curtains before the kids get home from school” method. I use the full width of the fabric that you get from the store for each panel, so there is no cutting needed for the sides. Then I measure out 90 inches for the length. This gives me an inch hem on the bottom (1/2-inch folded over twice) and five inches on the top (enough room to create a rod pocket). In the end, this leaves me with a standard 84-inch panel.

Tip: When sewing, sew an inch hem (1/2-inch folded over twice) on the sides FIRST before you make your top and bottom hems.

I can usually whip out two drapery panels in under two hours using this quick method.

There is still much to be done in the office, but I am definitely happy with the progress we’ve made so far, especially in the way of organization.

I can now actually work in here quite comfortably.

Speaking of comfort, we purchased this queen-sized sofa bed a few months ago. It was a floor model that was marked down on super clearance at Boscov’s.

I still need to sew throw pillows, add some wall art (which I am super excited about) and organize the TV/game/music end of the room before I can call this space finished.

I hope to have another progress update later this week, so stay tuned.

Oh, and if you haven’t already signed up to win the Hallmark Back-To-School Care Package, there is still time. Be sure to leave a comment here to enter.

Office (and life) renovations

If you noticed I was MIA late last week, it was because I was neck-deep in this hot mess:

This is the bonus room above our garage and it is meant to serve as our office/guest room/music studio/family room. Yep. Lots going on in here.

Well, recently I’ve had to shift the focus from all the other meellions of projects I have going on around the house to putting this room in order. Why? Because I have finally made the transition from working full-time outside the home to doing part-time freelance work at home and focusing more on this blog. And I need a functional office space in which to do it.

Needless to say, our family’s decision for me to scale back from full to part-time work was not an easy one. It took years of prayer for direction plus some serious sacrifice to make the financials work (thank you, Dave Ramsey). But I know it was the right choice. I now get to focus more on my family, blogging and church ministries, while my part-time gigs keep my professional skills honed and give us some extra cash. I should probably also mention I started wearing these again:

I joined the Air National Guard part-time so our family could continue to enjoy affordable medical and life insurance coverage, educational benefits and some disposable income. If you’ve read my About page, you know the hubs and I were previously in the Air Force on active duty. It feels good to put on the uniform again.

So here I am in a pretty big life transition (remember we’ve also got Tiny No. 2 on the way in November) and, frankly, I need to bring order to something. So the office seems like a good place to start.

Here is a mood board representing some of the elements I plan to incorporate into the space:

Over the weekend, hubs and I painted the room. Now I’m working on curtains, wall art and furniture arrangement. Stay tuned for updates later this week.

Oh. Did I mention middle sis is getting married this Saturday and the entire bridal party is staying at my house the night before the wedding? So this room has to be presentable by Friday. (I know; I’m nuts.)

Have you ever done a room re-do in a week? Got any tips for me? (Margaritas are not an option right now.)