A (Previously Garish) Garage Turned Office

This week’s project is a bit embarrassing. It’s not often I let anyone have a glimpse of my messy garage, let alone post pictures of it. It’s a humble project as well. I simply wanted to surprise my husband with a workspace where he could be away from the noise of the house.

Our kitchen is wonderful. It’s where the whole family usually ends up. We have this great little alcove for the computer. That makes it perfect for me. I can look up recipes, pay the bills, or blog while I’m watching the baby. For my husband, it’s a different story. As soon as he gets settled in to work from home, everyone congregates in the kitchen around him. I bought him some noise cancelling headphones, but they only help so much. I wanted to create a space where he could be productive without constant interruptions.

Space, however, is at a premium in our house. We’ve squeezed pretty much all we can from our square footage. When we found out about Emmie, we even carved half of our two car garage into an awesome man cave/bedroom for Cole with the help of a contractor. In the half that remains, we have all of our requisite garage stuff. Lawn mower, weed whacker, old paint, and tools. Plus lots of junk. I try to keep the junk to a minimum, but that’s easier said than done when you are a die-hard thrift shopper.

So, this week it was time to clean out and rearrange. I made a rule for the project that I would not spend any money and that I would try to use as much of what we already had in the garage as I could. It worked out really well. I still cheated and bought a $3 chalkboard calendar from Goodwill, but that was it!

This is where I started. A daunting task indeed.

A bit of progress.

Done! Because my husband works for an alcohol distributor, I went with a wine theme. Well, that and we just have a lot of wine-related items hanging around from our years in the restaurant industry.  I hung an old shower curtain from the ceiling to hide the ductwork from view. I put a wire shelf that used to reside in my closet on top of the filing cabinets for some extra storage space.

I made some quick magnets with corks and hot glue.

Here’s that chalkboard calendar I bought. Totally worth it. I made the cabinet on which it is resting from a Ikea box I bought from Goodwill for Emmie’s toys. It ended up being too big too fit in her room. Here I just turned it on its side and screwed a mover’s dolly onto the bottom so it can roll out of the way quickly. I added a ledge shelf for the calendar to the side. The inside of the cabinet perfectly holds wine boxes for storage. The carpet on the floor was a failed experiment in which I tried to spray paint a border. Don’t look too closely. It’s pretty hideous.

 Look at my spokesmodel showing off Daddy’s new desk, which by the way, is a card table we had in the garage.

One of the best parts of the project came courtesy of my  15-year-old son, Ryan. He set up the computer, which is an old laptop we hooked up to a screen, keyboard, and mouse.  He configured the computer to use our main computer as a server. If Bob is working in the kitchen and things get too loud, he can come out to the garage and work on the same file without missing a beat.

The file cabinets are painted with chalkboard paint. This was another experiment that didn’t look quite right in the house, but is working beautifully here. I wonder who could have written the lovely sentiment above. Hmmm. Well anyway, I think that about sums it up.


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