Home Office Redesign
When we moved in two years ago there was much to do. Mr. GDC's home office has been neglected. He has worked from home over 12 years. But with COVID entered a new phenomenon, the video call. Where previously he was often on the road visiting clients, he is now quarantined at home in what is likely the dining area. The back wall behind his desk featured a built-in of narrow, short shelves that made dressing them challenging. Most books were too wide for the shelves, his certificates were too tall, the shelves set empty, with the red grass paper that covered the back the only decorative feature. Those awkward built-in shelves became the backdrop for all of his video conference calls. Mr. GDC's sales partner texted me "Andi, do something with those shelves!" We needed a design plan quick -
After playing with the built-in, we ultimately decided the best choice was to cover the shelves. Which created a huge patch. Since the Knotty pine walls are from 1950, trying to find pieces to patch the wall was impossible. How would we deal with the patch? We considered a "feature" wall, maybe wallpaper, even a large decorative screen - maybe something Chinoiseries.
With the ceiling painted I began measuring the strips of linen and sewing them together to create wide sections to cover each wall. We upholstered the walls by stapling the fabric at the top just under the crown molding, stretching it down and stapling along the bottom and finally the sides pulling it tight. I realized early on how brilliant I was to choose a solid fabric, nothing is square in our 1930's cottage, a pattern would have drawn attention to that, trying to keep the pattern straight - I never would have managed. The process of measuring the linen, sewing it together, ironing the seams, hanging in on the walls turned from days into weeks.
Whomever added the knotty pine to the walls, didn't replace the trim around the doorways and windows, which left the walls flat with the trim. It looked odd. We chose to add wood trim around each doorway, also the below the crown and above the baseboard to hide the staples from hanging the fabric. I thought this small bit of additional trim would add a much needed finish. It worked great. As previously noted, nothing is square... each piece of trim had to be caulked, sanded and touched up. The fabric was on the walls, we had to cover each wall with plastic in an effort to protect the linen. We used painter's tape to hang the plastic, then carefully caulked, sanded and touched up the trim paint. It seemed every task accomplished created another tasks.
28 yards of linen, a box of staples, a carton of white caulk, over 100' feet of trim and weeks later....
I love the walls. The linen provides texture while hiding a miss match mess beneath. The look is elegant. The trim adds a layer of finish the room needed. The track disc works well for providing desk task lighting and will eventually illuminate art on the back wall. Though I love the deep rich ceiling color, the ceiling was a mistake. The living room is a foot higher than the home office. It didn't occur to me when we painted the ceiling dark that the office ceiling would appear shorter when viewed from the living room due to the step down. The best laid plans...
I am scheming to change the ceiling color. I know! The walls are covered in linen. I think painting the ceiling a close match to the linen will make the room appear taller. Wrapping any room in the same color creates visual space. Now, what did I do with that plastic? Time to cover up the linen walls - again.
Until next time, wishing you all the best -