Office Reno 2009- Update #2 (finished)

The reconstruction of my home office is essentially complete. I still have a computer or two to move in, some wiring to re-organize, and a few other bits and pieces. But the flooring is done and all the new furniture is in place. Here is how it looks now:

Click the above photo to see more images from the reno

And here is a picture of the completed empty room with no furniture installed:

The “big” desk pictured in the first photo above is my main personal workstation: my gaming PC, XBox 360, and iMac “multimedia” server are all there. My “work” desk is in the SE corner:


The wiring is still messy on my computer rack, but I have a plan to tidy that up. I’ve worked from home several days with this configuration and find it far more pleasant than my old office layout. The colours are still sitting well with me, and as I get settled in I keep finding more and more things I like about them.

The three pieces of furniture I bought were all from Sears: the large desk, the corner desk, and the glass-fronted bookshelf. These came completely disassembled: there are a couple of pictures in the gallery that show how many pieces there were just for the large desk alone. It should be noted that the large desk is over 250 pounds: even the little corner desk was 150 pounds. Assembly was well documented, but time consuming- for all three pieces, I’d say in excess of ten hours. They are particleboard/composite with “real wood” veneers: yes, solid oak/cherry/what have you would be nice, but $3k for a desk is out of my league. The desks both have nice keyboard trays with drawer fronts- they look quite good.

The bookshelf was the last piece I assembled, and I completed it today. I like the sliding glass doors and the drawers at the top. As I moved this cabinet into my office I realized that for the first time in nearly twenty years I have a “display space”. I’ve had some ideas for what will go behind those glass doors already- I’ll give a hint.

6 thoughts on “Office Reno 2009- Update #2 (finished)”

  1. Looks good. The wood floor is nice and goes with the wood furniture and your brown leather chair very well… but the metal and glass shelf unit between your work and personal desks really clashes.

    And your personal work station looks a bit like it is being assimilated by the borg with all those “Doc Oc” arms with monitors coming out of it.

    You, my friend, need to go Steam Punk.

    You have the furniture ( mostly.)
    You have the office.
    You have the cats πŸ˜‰

    Just one or two more buts of furniture and a little select modding or use of brass fixtures and you will have a proper personal home laboratory for a gentleman engaged in examinations of the arts of electromagnetic computation and communication. πŸ˜€

    ( Seriously though, I know you were as much concerned about makeing the space work better as look better, and I’m not really into “designer spaces”, but after all the work and the good results so far, you should really consider the ‘finishing touches’. You are already very close.)

  2. Thanks, Chris- normally you find more flaws than that, so I’ll take your observations as good news πŸ˜‰

    The rack is… functional. Unfortunately, I do need a place to put my network gear, and the rack itself is sturdy and reasonably unintrusive. I have a lot of work to do to try to organize the wiring there, but undoubtedly that will always be a work in progress.

    The monitor arms are one of my great joys. They make the space a lot more flexible, free up desk space, and I like their “tech” look. I currently have four arms, one of which has two mounts on it- like you say, it is getting a bit “octopus-like”.

    I’m not sure about steam punk- the idea of spending weeks and hundreds (or thousands) of dollars to make a keyboard look like a typewriter doesn’t really appeal. But I do admire some of the pieces I’ve seen, along with the price tags: $1,500 keyboards and $4,000 computer cases are reasonable only when you think about the amount of hand-crafting involved. For a guy who buys veneer desks rather than solid wood, they are impossible dreams.

    I do plan on adding some odds and ends that I’ve wanted for eons: a couple of display swords, for example. But I don’t think I can manage a true “theme” other than “eclectic geek” πŸ™‚ A bit of Star Trek here, a dash of Lord of the Rings there, and maybe some Star Wars in the corner- but not too much. My main objective is to try to avoid making the place look like a dumptruck just dropped a load of salvaged computer gear in here.

  3. Not trying to look for flaws, if I were doing that I d be asking about the pink window blinds πŸ˜‰

    Before it was just the standard “room with all the computer stuff” it. I wasn’t so much that it looked bad as looks were irrelevant, sort of like a closet: “This is the kitchen, that’s the downstairs washroom and over here is where I store my husband and his computers.” πŸ˜‰

    Now, it actually looks like a den, a workspace, an actual room for people. It’s not anything I would have ended up with, and that’s sort of the point. I like what you’ve done, it just seems a shame not to complete the theme *you* have developed.

    Oh for certain some of the steam punk stuff, though brilliant is way over the top and only someone deeply into the ‘lifestyle’ is going to spend that much time and money.

    But if you look at the example of the LCD monitor mod you link to most of the effect can be had by using some spray paint and some bits of trim from the local Home Depot. Do a little of that on the octopus arms and a little creative camouflage on the big monitor and you are half there… and the rack is the easy part, you just need a shelving unit that looks brassy, or old, rather than new and high tech. I’d probably change it before tackling the arms.

    Anyway, it certainly looks improved and enjoy the fruits of your labours

    Oh, BTW. The last picture makes it look like you sent Irene to sit in the corner because she was bad πŸ˜‰ :p

  4. The office looks nice. I like the two different colours of green, very slick.

    I would have a hard time sitting with my back to a window, but being close to the door has its advantages πŸ™‚

  5. it looks very slick kelly, especially the floor. loose the vertical blinds though – if you invest in light curtains the room will be bright and keep its clean look. did you put the furniture togeather yourself? love sis

  6. Hi, Connie! Thanks for the nice comment. The furniture was all in pieces: I had to assemble it, but it was all pre-finished and such so it wasn’t like I actually “built” anything. Just tab A into slot B about 200 times πŸ˜‰

    I plan on replacing the blinds, but I’m not fond of curtains. I honestly couldn’t tell you why- I just have always preferred blinds for some reason. I haven’t replaced them yet, but when I do it will likely be wooden slat blinds. I’ll likely get that done later this summer, once I’ve had a chance to ponder a bit more about what I want.

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