For a while now I’ve been working wherever I can find space; the dining table, on the sofa in the lounge, even perched on the front doorstep while catching some sunshine. Basically grabbing any peaceful spot possible in order to write, ponder and create whilst trying to not get in the way of the rest of my household! It’s not been easy, but I made the best of it as cash and space are precious commodities in our home; then one day my hubster was moving around his art space and decided he no longer needed the wobbly old computer desk he’d been using……. LIGHT BULB MOMENT! So here’s how I did a budget friendly home office make-over – and by budget friendly I mean very low budget!
The desk on offer had seen better days to say the least! It had been second hand when we were given it, then my son used it for two years for gaming (including scratching the top with scissors) followed by my husband using it as a second work surface for his art space for another year. It was wobbly, battered and a horrible blackish brown colour; I really didn’t like it and thought a lot about just chucking it out and saving up for a cheap new one. But then my environmental conscience starting pricking me and I realised that re-purposing this battered old desk was the right (and cheaper) thing to do.
We have been upcycling other second hand furniture pieces for our living room and still had lots of lovely chalk paint left. I decided that grey would be the best option as it would blend the desk into my bedroom. Who wants their place of relaxation to feel like an office anyway? Having the desk painted this warm grey colour means that it feels like a part of the space rather than something just plonked there in the corner. Plus it only took two coats and dried within a few hours! Then Eddie tightened up the screws thus fixing the wobble.
Next up I had to figure out what to do about a chair with no money. Fortunately for me, we “inherited” a set of very heavy, very large dining chairs when we moved into our house. One of the chairs needed to be moved from the kitchen as it blocked the way to the cupboards, so it had been residing in my daughter’s bedroom for a while. That is util she decided she no longer wanted it! So Mum to the rescue!
I dressed the chair up with a cushion I’ve had for a while – I bought it in Primark I think about three years ago – and I went round the house collecting bits and bobs that I thought would make my space feel, well, like my space. I made use of some old pretty boxes to display some of my essential oils and remedies and I emptied out a grey and white basket that contained odd gloves and random socks to use for extra storage. It’s amazing how much stuff you already have if you just look around you!
So I had the desk, the chair and the accessories. The shelves were clean and organised, heck I even had my plant life sorted and my laptop in place….. but something was missing. What does every self respecting home office need? Cute stationary, doh!
I literally spent hours drooling over gorgeous pens, journals and sticky notes sets online. In fact I seem to have developed a bit of an obsession with stickers…. I think I need help! After all that “research” there was one place for me that fit my criteria of beautiful quality with a minimal price tag – Wilko.
My kids and hubby laugh at me for my Wilko obsession – I don’t really care to be honest because I bloody love that shop! On the rare occasions I leave my tiny town, if we’re going somewhere that has a Wilko store then it’s scheduled into the trip. I love love love it!
I bought my desk lamp and bulb, planner, desk tidy, pens, pencils, accessories and note block for under £30 including delivery and I couldn’t be happier with it all. Everything is such great quality and so well designed; the planner has space for me to keep track of our family diary, budget, birthdays and shopping lists as well as ample space for me to plan out content I want to create. For £6 you really get a lot of bang for your buck. Wilko has a wide range of stationary on offer, from your typical back-to-school things to several design collections – perfect if like me you enjoy the matchy matchy. It’s worth checking out if you have students to shop for, or if you want to treat yourself to something nice to write with.
Altogether, including my new stationary collection, the creation of my home office cost just £30. I think in future if I have the opportunity/spare cash I’m going to buy an office type chair on wheels, as the dining chair is rather heavy and not easy to move. But it works great for now and that’s all that matters!
It’s amazing what you can achieve with a bit of creativity and stubbornness right? I see so many posts on Pinterest and Instagram that encourage lots of shopping and spending for interiors, but I kinda feel like having a nice home doesn’t need to cost either a) a fortune or b) the Earth. That’s why my family and I have committed to buy secondhand as much as possible – whether that’s for our home, our clothes, even electricals/tech – because there’s enough waste in this world without us adding to it!
Have you ever gone shopping in your own house? Maybe you’ve just done your own tiny budget make-over? I would love to hear all about it! Do you have any frugal pointers for this thrifty decorator? Let me know in the comments below!
Take care and I will be back soon,