I have decided to join one of my favorite blogs in a fun organizing challenge this month, the "New Year's Organizing Revolution". I am not a naturally organized person, so if I can do it, anyone can. This first week is Office Organization, and I am really excited to join in as my husband David and I just finished our new desk nook in my newly redone kitchen.
A brief description of the process for me. I started my desk project after my husband asked if I would like to remove the built in China Cabinet in our kitchen and turn it into a desk nook. I was very excited and inspired by the idea and immediately began searching Pinterest for pretty desk ideas. I couldn't get enough! I finally settled on some budget friendly ideas that I found on iheartorganizing.com and abowlfulloflemons.net . If you are thinking of getting your office organized, please visit these blogs, they are amazing and not only that but have realistic and affordable ideas to make your house beautiful.
Honestly, my paperwork and desk space was a mess before our office remodel. It was located in the middle of my 2 youngest boys' room and it needed to be decluttered and organized. Here is a photo of the before in the middle of the messy room.
To start the remodel, we took the china cabinet out, widened the space and took out the wall all the way to the ceiling. It is in the corner of our dining space on the far wall in our kitchen. We had a very limited budget so even though I wanted to run to the store and buy new everything, we only paid for the new sheet rock. Other than that, we used what we had. And since we recently redid the kitchen we had stuff to work with.
Then David had the tough part. He had to put up the drywall to make walls and mud and sand repeatedly until it was perfect. Finally, he added the trim. This took us weeks as David works a full-time job and with 5 kids he has very little "free" time. While David was busy building the nook, I organized our files using the system that Toni at A Bowl Full of Lemons describes in her Home Organization 101:The Office post that you can read here. I modified the file names a bit to fit my needs, but the idea of organizing my files using a rainbow ROYGBIV system really works out neat. I also made a mail sorting box by covering a shoe box with scrapbook paper that is handy to sort mail and school papers. I literally tossed over 2 garbage bags of papers and shredded even more. I found all of our owner's manuals for appliances, etc. and put them in one of our old file boxes.
Here is my newly organized file box. I purchased the new folders at Staples with my Staples rewards that I get for recycling ink cartridges. The File box was purchased at Target a few years ago but not used as I didn't know what to do with it. Isn't it pretty? Notice the rainbow files. I also found the labels online.
And here is my mail sorter. It was super quick to throw together one evening. And Free! Maybe someday I will buy a pretty wire one but for now I really like it. I laminated the outside after I made it to increase the durability.
Here is the desk nook, all ready for me to paint it!
After David finished building the nook I happily volunteered to paint the space, using the same paint that we needed to purchase to touch up the kitchen walls. It is a beautiful Valspar spring green called "leaf bud" that we bought at Lowe's. I turned on some rock music on my computer and had fun painting! Here is the nook, all painted!
And my cute husband :)
After the paint was dry, my husband measured and planned shelves similar to the ones I fell in love with on Toni's blog. Here is a picture of hers, which she purchased from Ikea. Both my husband and I love the look of her shelves with the simple wood brackets.
We took three of the shelves out of the old china cabinet and I painted them white. David cut and sanded the brackets and drilled them to the back wall of my desk nook. I wanted them to go high as I had a ton of crafting and office supplies that I wanted to fit in the desk nook. My good friend Jan gave us her desk and accessories last year, and we simply removed the keyboard tray and desk drawer and placed the desk into the nook and reattached the desk to the legs.
I cleaned out and organized my crafts and supplies, and found baskets around my house that I could use to organize my desk area.
Here it is, all done!
One of my quick and easy little organizing projects was to organize my ribbon (rainbow order, of course! Thanks again to Toni for the inspiration! ) I just used a paper towel roll and wound the ribbon, securing with a straight pin. I put it all on a wooden dowel that I had around the house leftover from another project and added a couple of rolls of ribbons to the ends. The dowel fits perfectly on the brackets of the bottom shelf.
I am really pleased with the results of our office project. I was really surprised that I could remodel without spending hardly anything. Please don't be discouraged from remodeling if you are on a budget, it can be done. And it can be fun to organize, it is one of my newest hobbies. As Nate Burkus says, "It's free to clean!"