AE Projects In Progress | The Office, Part II

Big week around here last week as the new floors were installed in my office and we set up the new workspace.

You can check out the first part of this series here.

I have to tell you that's it's been my dream to make something like this happen in my workspace. I just feel so thankful and excited and can't wait to start making stuff in there.

Here's a look at the progression over the last week or so:

It took a couple days to move all the stuff out of my office and into my bedroom.

It might sound crazy that I moved it all in my bedroom (shown above) but it's the next biggest room and it's the most un-decorated. Normally there's nothing in there except the bed, end-table and two bedside tables. Everything else you see there came from the office.

We moved most of the little things out first and then Aaron (aka my "tech guy" and "guitar guy" if you've been following along on Instagram) helped us get the rest of the bigger things out.

During the move-out process we did set aside some tubs for products and supplies that I intend to giveaway or donate. I still plan to go through the drawers as we assess what will actually go back into the office. I think I'm going to find there's a lot of stuff I don't use or stuff that can be stored differently to minimize the number of pieces of storage furniture that actually need to be in the office.

On Sunday I moved out the last of the computer equipment and tables.

I set up the computers in the dining area as a temporary work space. Katie and I worked from here all week.

The guy arrived Monday morning with the wood laminate (a blonde maple - I used a local company Imperial Floors for the flooring and the labor). He pulled out all the carpet first and then got to work.

Katie and I kept peeking in there to see the progress and we were getting very excited as the day went along.

By Tuesday mid-day the floors were all complete.

And I was so happy.

Katie and I learned early last week that the free-standing kitchen islands (Varde) I wanted from Ikea were out of stock at the Portland store. Portland is our "local" store that's two hours away from here.

We had multiple discussions and phone calls about what to do. Because we were in the mood to get this in progress we checked and found out that the kitchen islands were in stock in Seattle. We made the crazy decision to make the 5-hour drive up there to acquire them. Totally worth it. And for the record we checked to see how much it would cost to have them shipped - it was around $300 and would come in about two weeks. Since the kids were with my parents it was feasible. We left home about 1pm, drove up, spent a couple hours at Ikea and turned around and drove back home (into town about 12:30am).

Along the drive we stopped in Kalama, Washington (just north of Vancouver) for a quick photo at the school where they shot the parking lot scenes in the Twilight movies.

We had measured the box dimensions so we knew that the six boxes were going to fit in my Subaru.

Walking into this space is awesome. It's such a change from what was in here before.

George approves.

We went through and counted all the pieces before starting to put the kitchen islands together. Everything was in order.

Not too bad to put together. The main thing was that our hands ended up hurting from all the twisting of the screws.

A totally satisfying project once they were done. They are just what I wanted and they take up a big piece of the space. I've long been a stand-up scrapbooker so this style of workspace is perfect for me.

That's where it stands right now. We found out on Saturday that the desks (also from Ikea) don't fit in any cars or trucks we have access too so we might have to make some different plans to get the desks. My plan is to set up a temporary computer space near the windows for now as we figure out how to get the desks here.

Here's the deal: I'm not in a hurry to bring all the stuff back in the room. I'm thinking I might bring things back in as I need them. This will help me see/know what I really use and what can go in deeper storage.

I love the open feel. I love the white and the light wood. I want to be really intentional about what comes back into this space.

Up next:


  • Adding baseboard molding.

  • Painting trim and doors and adding new hardware to the doors. This is happening today.

  • Lights.


I'll continue to share some updates over the next few weeks as things start happening in here.

66 thoughts shared

  1. Brooke

    2013-04-02 00:17:49 +0200

    I have always wanted to know where that fabric pocket on your wall in the dining area is from? Love functional!

    Have loved watching the progress of your office. I'm horrible at home decorating/make overs/etc. so I'm learning a lot. I finally told my hubby on the weekend that I'm ready to ditch our old office desks (we still have 2 in use but have had 2 sitting in our dining area unused for over 1.5 years {God!}). Depth of the desk is important for me I'm finding.

    * edited 08/08/14 11:50PM
  2. Nancy L

    2013-04-02 00:50:51 +0200

    Love watching your room come together and laughed when I read you drove all the way to Seattle to get the islands. I have driven distances but not that far! I am curiou... what are the dimensions of your room? I have a scraproom but it seems so tiny because I have shelves, tables or storage cubes wall-to-wall.

    * edited 08/08/14 11:50PM
  3. Dawn

    2013-04-02 00:51:49 +0200

    Love it Ali! So bright and big. I hear what your saying when it comes to taking your time in bringing things back in. I just finished the painting of my space (walls, built-ins and table) and putting together my ikea purchases. The only things I have brought back in are my imac and printer. Everything else is in my formal living and dining room. Not a pretty sight when you walk in my house, but I have yet to stay in town long enough to start figuring out what is going to come back in. I overheard someone at the Portland CKC saying something about the Make a wish foundation taking scrapbook supply donations. I am gonna look into that. Can't wait to finish this project and can't wait to see the final results of yours as well.

    * edited 08/08/14 11:50PM
  4. Cindy

    2013-04-02 01:08:01 +0200

    Looks great.......can't wait to see how you finish it up (desks). I really need to do the same. I'm hoping this will give me the push that I need ;)

    * edited 08/08/14 11:50PM
  5. Claudine Pepe

    2013-04-02 01:26:05 +0200

    Love the room Ali! Glad you made the trip! How big is your office space?

    * edited 08/08/14 11:50PM
  6. Kristina

    2013-04-02 01:36:06 +0200

    Can't wait to see it all finished. Loving the journey too. I love your style and it's so me. You are truly an inspiration and I have loved following your blog for years. The room is so light and fresh. Thanks for sharing with us all here in Australia too.

    * edited 08/08/14 11:50PM
  7. laura g.

    2013-04-02 02:37:33 +0200

    WOW! this is great!!!

    * edited 08/08/14 11:50PM
  8. Mallory

    2013-04-02 02:54:33 +0200

    I am so excited for you Ali! And can't wait to see more!!!

    * edited 08/08/14 11:50PM
  9. Teresa Igo

    2013-04-02 03:00:12 +0200

    you're gonna make me have to redo mine!!!!!! ;D
    can't wait to see it finished!

    * edited 08/08/14 11:50PM
  10. Scrappyjen

    2013-04-02 03:46:00 +0200

    Totally get the need for re-evaluating your creative space, I'm currently part of Organizing FUNdamentals at Big Picture Classes - best thing I've ever done as far as assessing my space and my stuff. So freeing to know I've got what I actually use & love and send the rest packing. Especially love doing this with a community of other scrappers. So excited to take this journey and end up with a beautifully fresh space at the end of it.

    * edited 08/08/14 11:50PM
  11. Megan Smith

    2013-04-02 03:49:09 +0200

    It's looking great Ali!

    I just redid my scraproom with Ikea stuff (I went with mostly the Besta system) and I totally took for granted that I am only 15 minutes from the Portland Ikea. Thanks for the perspective!

    * edited 08/08/14 11:50PM
  12. Robin Walston

    2013-04-02 05:13:23 +0200

    Three words: battery-operated screwdriver.
    I've put a lot of IKEA stuff together with an inexpensive Black & Decker screwdriver.
    You will thank me. :)

    * edited 08/08/14 11:50PM
  13. Suz

    2013-04-02 05:20:21 +0200

    Love seeing this space get a new fresh look! TFS the process with all of us. Take care you.

    * edited 08/08/14 11:50PM
  14. Christin Dukes

    2013-04-02 05:27:16 +0200

    Ali, your floor is beautiful! Rent a small U-Haul truck to go and get your desk. Just after high school I went to Florida with a friend and we weren't old enough to rent a car to go to Disney World so we rented a U-Haul for like $39 a day! We still laugh at the truck that we had with a Maine lobster on it!

    * edited 08/08/14 11:50PM
  15. shelly k

    2013-04-02 05:39:54 +0200

    Love it so far!

    * edited 08/08/14 11:50PM
  16. Jo-Anne from ZA

    2013-04-02 08:45:50 +0200

    What we will do for scrapbooking:-)

    Lovely story ladies and i so would have done the 5 hour trip!! So worth it. I think your space is just going to be so TOTALLY amazing. Nothing like a new space to inspire one!!

    * edited 08/08/14 11:50PM
  17. CJ

    2013-04-03 10:49:44 +0200

    What a beautiful space. I know what you mean about putting together Ikea flatpacks, I always end up with blisters. It'll all be worth it when it's done though.

    * edited 08/08/14 11:50PM
  18. Erin

    2013-04-03 17:06:34 +0200

    Looks great Ali! What desks are you getting from Ikea? I'm in the process of picking out a desk from Ikea too and am wondering what your choice was.

    * edited 08/08/14 11:50PM
  19. Bernice Tsoi

    2013-04-04 07:46:35 +0200

    I love how bright and open your room is right now! Such a beautiful space, can't wait to see it transform. Also, where is your striped skirt from?

    * edited 08/08/14 11:50PM
  20. Lori Kae

    2013-04-06 06:43:59 +0200

    Hi Ali,

    Your room is looking fabulous! Can you share the brand and information on your hardwood flooring? I am ready to pull out our carpeting in several rooms and you found exactly what I have been looking for.

    Have a beautiful weekend! :) Even with this lovely rain we are having. I am just up the coast near Tacoma.

    Smiles to you

    * edited 08/08/14 11:50PM
  21. Serena

    2013-04-08 09:15:05 +0200

    What a beautiful space! I'm looking forward to seeing more!

    * edited 08/08/14 11:50PM
  22. Cindy

    2013-04-28 06:46:11 +0200

    I too love your craft space, but it does need some color, yellow sounds good. Maybe on one wall, paint horizontal stripes, and that's it. Don't put anything but your shelves on the bottom. That would be all you want to add to that one long wall. I'll be curious to know. cdahlgren at live dot com. Have fun!

    * edited 08/08/14 11:50PM
  23. AE Projects In Progress | The Office, Part IV + A $150 Minted Giveaway | Ali Edwards

    2013-06-28 17:33:31 +0200

    [...] more about the transformation and the process here and here and [...]

    * edited 08/08/14 11:50PM
  24. Sara Grafton

    2013-11-25 01:16:53 +0100

    Thank you for sharing the office updates! I enjoyed reading them and knew where to look for inspiration for my craft space. I have Varde island on order as a Christmas present to myself. The office/craft room is coming together and is shared with my husband, son and two dogs. :)

    * edited 08/08/14 11:50PM
  25. Craft Room Progress |

    2014-03-30 18:35:59 +0200

    […] noticed that Ali has changed her office recently and added some laminate floors. I really loved when she painted her walls white and […]

    * edited 08/08/14 11:50PM
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