Design Quickie under Budget Restraints

24 02 2010

This week I had an interesting challenge from someone that I met for just a couple of minutes during a meeting.  He asked what someone gains by using my services.  We discussed a sense of style and knowledge for products.  He seemed to think he would spend more than double when he incorporated a designer into the process of his office remodel.  I priced out what he could have done an 11’ x 15’ office using cheap knock-down furniture you can buy at any big box store.  We all know the stuff I am talking about.  A sticker on top of MDF board?!  The price tag I came up with would have set him back $1150.

So my goal became doing a complete and stylish office for under $1500 bucks.  {If you are interested–I came to that price because he said it would cost double ($2400), but I wanted to subtract my quickie fee of $250.00 and take off more than a quarter of the initial price so…I thought $1500 would be a good starting ground considering I was using more solid materials.}  Even I was surprised when I brought in the final product for under $1200.

Here is our material board:

So here is what we did to create this sophisticated, fun office…

  1. Starting with paint colors I thought it would be nice to have a soft, calming blue for the walls since it indicates depth, expertise, and stability.  Who doesn’t want their office to show their wisdom in a given field?  A nice color for this would be Dunn Edwards Snow Lodge (#DE5799).  To offset this we needed a bright fun color and since green represents growth, freshness and harmony it seemed like a great color to accent with.  Dunn Edwards Grass Roots (DE5521) will really pep up the room nicely.
  2. Since we were going with more colorful things on the walls I thought adding some beige colored grommet top panels would be classic.  I always thought that the metal at the top made them a bit more masculine.  Anyone agree?
  3. The large wall clock will really make a statement and was the inspiration for the green color that we are using throughout the space.
  4. This shelf is from IKEA and originally starts out white, but with a few strokes of Grass Roots paint this will quickly make a HUGE impact on the room.  Attaching a couple of these above the desk is certain to hit a high note!
  5. The desk is simple and straightforward.  I like that it is light and adds a breath of freshness to the room.  It will also be easy to clean with its melamine top and the construction of the legs will mean this bad boy won’t be laying down on the job.  On top is a great table lamp. The chrome finish helps to compliment the edginess of the office.
  6. This office chair is stylish and ergonomically suitable for sitting long hours in not to mention built solid to last.  I think that the white really works with the desk and the bit of chrome really lends accent to the room.
  7. CB2 knows how to build a rolling file system!  This guy offers two drawers for storage as well as a larger lower drawer for files.  It’s solid metal construction means it will last a lifetime and a classic look ensures it will be able to adapt to any style down the road.
  8. This little bookshelf will act as the printer station.  With the printer on top it leaves plenty of room for extra supplies and stacks of paper.  Just like the rolling storage this is framed in metal with glass shelves ensuring it will look great for years to come.
  9. These bookshelves are a steal from IKEA for $59 each!!  They start out white, but by removing the back panel and giving it an accent paint job these will really stand out from the room. Flanking a standard white one with two of the altered bookshelves should do the job in creating a punch.
  10. The accent side chair just brings the space together.  It has all the hues we are using and while it was a higher priced item at $200 it seems worth it to finish out the room.
  11. Also if you are looking for desk accessories I would suggest any of these brown, yellow and orange colors.  These are from the container store but there are a ton of options out there to choose from.

So there you have it.  For basically the same price and a little bit of labor painting you could totally have a poppy yet sophisticated home office.  If you are interested in snagging a quickie of your own, click here.  I just can’t wait to see what you think-isn’t this design WAY better than the standard office furniture?!

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