Dining Room to Office Makeover

A few months ago I wrote about how I wanted my home to feel.  Cozy, modern, functional, inspired.  My dining room, once a space I loved, started to feel like something I didn't want anymore.  Not wrong, but as I found myself working from home more I started using it less and less.

As we evolve, so do our homes.

 
Dining Room BEFORE - Photograph by David Tsay

Dining Room BEFORE - Photograph by David Tsay

Home Office NOW - In Progress

Home Office NOW - In Progress

 

I'm still in the process of making over this space, but briefly here is what I've accomplished so far and some tips on how you can start a project of your own.

Commit & Start

During the last October challenge I decided it was time to take the plunge and commit.  First by boldly getting rid of my dining table and chairs - something I once totally loved.  

Honestly, I did felt resistance to getting started because I knew I would have to immediately replace them with something new.  Working through that fear I committed and ended up selling them the next day!!  No turning back.  

 
My Pinterest Board Inspiration

My Pinterest Board Inspiration

 

Get Inspired

As I do for all design projects, I started a Pinterest board.  I pinned ideas on color, furniture, workspaces and anything that inspired me then looked for how I could translate that to fit my space and budget. 

I went with a simple white desk from Ikea and used a chair I already had.

 
 
 

Think, Then Act

Considering my pinterest board and how I wanted to use the space, I knew that I needed a functional space with a lot of white and pops of color.  Because I can see the space from my living room, where I spend most of my time at home, I wanted to be able to hide most of what I was working on in drawers and storage at the end of each work day.   

After considering a few different directions I finally decided to have the space painted back to a neutral, creamy white - something that every image I had pinned had in common.

 
Walls - Dunn Edwards Gardenia

Walls - Dunn Edwards Gardenia

Trim - Dunn Edwards White

Trim - Dunn Edwards White

 

A Plan to Execute Over Time

If you're not working with a designer your vision will most likely be implemented over time.  I'm doing this as I find the right pieces and as budget allows.

The Right Rug

The most important piece in the entire space is the rug, which will warm it up, add needed texture and pattern.  

I love the timeless look of traditional moroccan berber style rugs and within this style you can find designs with fun modern colors like pink and yellow.  

Right now the color blocked pillow and piece of fur I have hanging on my temporary office chair gives some of that warmth and color.  Without it there are too many straight lines. 

The right rug is what is going to take this space to the next level.  In fact, the office is incomplete without it.

 
Love this.  More saturated color.  Subtle pattern.

Love this.  More saturated color.  Subtle pattern.

LOVE THIS.  Perfect color and pattern, but too small.

LOVE THIS.  Perfect color and pattern, but too small.

 

Art vs. Gallery Wall

I've been contemplating art vs. gallery wall.  The largest wall in the dining room is quite empty, yet when you're in the space I actually don't mind the negative space.  I briefly moved my juju hat into the office and placed it on a smaller wall - which I loved - but I'd rather keep it in the living room where you can see it as soon as you walk into the apartment.

J Crew happens to do amazing gallery walls.  I love everything about these images.  I might do a few pieces of art rather than a full wall.  I think it's quite dependent on the rug that I choose. For me, less is more.

 
 

All in all, I'm quite happy with the design direction my office is heading.  And I made a video about it.  Let me know in the comments below what you think and where you are in your projects.

 
 

 

With style and gratitude,