gold line svg


Budget Room: Library + Den + Guest Room


You’ve asked for it before in the comments and today we are bringing you a room that is 1 part guest bedroom, 1 part library, and 1 part den. It’s a multifunctional room and one that can function as any of the aforementioned purposes while still feeling pulled together and cohesive (multi-purpose at it’s finest my friends). We all have these rooms, or at least have all seen these rooms. Consider them the junk drawer of rooms. Basically the extra room in your home that serves more than just one purpose and for that reason it ends up having a collection of hand-me-downs from every other room. Maybe your old lazy-boy is in the corner paired with your old living room floor lamp, then on the opposite side of the room sits a desk that probably hasn’t been used in a functional way for years. On the other side of the room is the old sofa that you brought with you from college filled with a smattering of mismatched pillows. It’s not a room you are particularly proud of, but it is a room that has so much potential if you have the right pieces in there to help it function to its full potential. That’s where today’s budget room comes in.


Bookcase | Sofa | Rug | Art Storage Box | Throw Blanket | Solid Pillow | Lumbar Pillow | Planter | Bookend | Desk | Desk Chair | Tray | Pencil Holder | PencilsAccent Chair | Floor Lamp

Let’s start with the most expensive, coming in at $4,893. It’s at a price point that surely isn’t nothing (almost 5K) but you have to remember, with this room you are basically creating three new rooms in one, so technically each room (office, bedroom, library) only costs $1,600 which isn’t too bad. The sofa pulls down and turns into a queen-sized bed and that chair has such good lines and angles at that price point. For the desk area we gave you a cozy chair, a tray to house some desk accessories including the pencil cup and pencils we are recommending for the look (yes, we gave you a pencil recommendation – did you think we wouldn’t?!). Over on the bookshelves, which would flank the sofa, we gave you a few storage boxes to get started (it is a catchall room after all) as well as some bookends and a planter. If you need some help styling these out then head over to this post where we walk you through how to style your bookshelves.

Bookcase | Sofa | Rug | Art | FrameStorage Box | Throw Blanket | Patterned Pillow | Lumbar Pillow | Planter | Bookend | Desk | Desk Chair | Tray | Pencil Holder | PencilsAccent Chair | Floor Lamp

The middle version which comes in at just under $3,500 has quite a few pieces that were swapped out as well as a slightly different color scheme going on with the art and textiles but it is still just as inviting and multifunctional. Although this sofa isn’t a pullout style like the first one (which is how we helped to cut the cost in half) it is just as stylish and can still work as an extra guest bed when needed. The back two cushions come off and that long bolster pillow can be pulled out to create a sizable bed for one. If you are looking for a full pullout bed and have the budget then grab the first one as it will work with this look as well. You’ll want to note that the pattern in the rug is slightly smaller than what we show on the moodboard however we enlarged it a bit here to show you the texture and pattern. Click through the link for a more accurate picture in a room with scale. The desk chair was swapped for this leather version and then to bring some more color into the room we added in the striped yellow blanket and mustard and blue throw pillows over on the daybed.

Bookcase | Daybed | Rug | Framed Art | Storage Box | Throw Blanket | Patterned Pillow | Lumbar Pillow | Planter | Bookend | Desk | Desk Chair | Tray | Pencil Holder | PencilsAccent Chair | Floor Lamp

Our last version, although the most affordable of the trio has some elements that we might actually like more than the other two. The bookcases are the same bookcases that we used in the Moody MidCentury Office makeover we did a few years back and we love them. They are simple, totally functional and bring in some much needed storage without making that wall feel too heavy. We also brought in a slightly different color story with the art and textiles which gives the room a very fun and bright vibe. If the other color combos are more for you then they could easily be interchanged. We also swapped the chair for this target one that we have used in a few different projects. The price can’t be beat and it is a classic MidCentury shape that will never go out of style.

So, which one is your favorite of the three? Hopefully this one room with three budgets (AND three purposes) has given you a little bit of inspiration to get your guest room/den/library into shape this weekend. Let us know if you have any questions below and happy friday everyone, have a wonderful weekend. Be sure to tag #EHDweekendmakeover to show us any of the projects you are working on at home. We love to see them.


Fin Mark


Never miss a single post and get a little something extra on Saturdays.

Comments are closed.
newest oldest most voted
Notify of

LOVE that rug! I’ve owned the 8×10 in ivory for years and moved it from room to room as needed, and my mom just ordered it in black for her living room yesterday. Durable, stylish, budget friendly and versatile…. great pick! Glad I got her to order it then, because now that you’ve posted it everyone is going to realize how fabulous it is, and it will be sold out everywhere, LOL! FYI, you can find the same rug under different names on both overstock and, in case Wayfair sells out.

It’s a great rug, and thanks for the review. 🙂


Glad to hear you say this! I ordered this rug a couple weeks ago for my (no kidding) library/guest room/den (pull out couch, all our books, tv/couch) and haven’t put it down yet because I don’t have a rug pad yet – it seems super slippery and like it will shed a lot, so I was starting to second guess myself even though I love it. Yay for the good review!


This makes me want to move to a 2 bedroom appartment so I have a spare room to fill with stuff. I love libraries, reading dens and a space to work on projects and these rooms do it all while looking so nice!


Elements from each design would be perfect for a tricky pass through room in our house. We already have a great napping couch that acts as an overflow guest bed for one. The rug is spot on and perfectly priced! Selfishly, could you add window treatment recommendations???

If your walls are white you could either go with a simple white curtain, or a light grey curtain to pull from some of the greys in the rug and sofa. Hope that helps. Good luck with your room. xx


I have this exact issue, except am trying to figure out how to bring a playroom into the den/guest room mix so the kids have a “space” of their own! It has been such a challenge. Also, Emily, I have to tell you that I saw your post on the nanny transition and have been meaning to comment. My kids are almost the same ages as yours (4 and almost 3, 19 months apart) and we had the same nanny for three years. Last year she moved on to a new family when my youngest started preschool and it broke our hearts. I found that telling the kids that she was moving on to a new “job” together was helpful. My daughter was devastated, and we definitely saw a regression in some ways that we hadn’t ever seen before. That lasted about 6 weeks. The other thing that really helped us was to say she was going to have play dates with her, and we stuck to that so the kids didn’t feel abandoned (although not too often because I felt like that it could have backtracked the situation). We still see her about once a month though, and she… Read more »

patricia blaettler

When our nanny was ready to leave because our youngest was starting school, I just got pregnant again..Problem solved!


I love this series, and this post in particular! With the exception of stealing the accent chair from the second look, I want to run out and buy all of the things from the third look. I also love how the little things like the pencils are included – it’s such a fun touch.

Glad you appreciate all the small details … including the pencils 😉


Question – if a room doesn’t get a lot of natural light, is it ever okay to use fake plants to style the bookshelves?


Target has some great faux foliage that I have used for my builtins and entry table. My green-thumbed dad was fooled.

patricia blaettler

Fake succulents can look pretty good.

We’ve used some of target’s faux foliage before and it is very convincing. We actually have a full post about faux foliage vs. real and when it works. The faux foliage game is getting a lot better than it was years ago when everyone had those sad silk trees in their homes. xx


Emily and team, I would love to see you style a studio apartment for your next budget room post! A bed, small couch, bistro table and chairs, rug, lamps and accessories for under 5,000 would be quite the challenge but I know that you would knock it out of the park!

Sounds like a very fun challenge. We might have to pull one together. xx


🙁 Too bad the second Wayfair sofa’s arm/bolster isn’t reversible. Two of these sofa/beds would have been perfect as an L-shape sectional with a corner table in my MCM home. Unfortunately the arm is only on the right (not on the left as shown int he round up).

Really enjoyed this round up!


I love this! And I think it could be transposed to so many multi-purpose rooms. A napping bed! The idea makes me want to slump in happiness…. Now, Emily – I have a room that I’m forcing to be an office/ living room/ playroom. It’s brutal and It makes me dizzy with compulsive tidying- but I’m renting and space is limited, so there ya go — but my question is — if it’s a room that can’t do white paint (because it’s too dark and looks sad and smudgy with white paint) — what colour paint would you suggest for the walls? Or even 3 walls and an accent wall? And, say, popcorn ceilings? See what I’m doing here, Emily? I’m totally trying to get you to design my tragic living room while pretending to ask a hypothetical question. 😀 I read your blog daily and am fortified by your Emily-ness. Don’t cave – we have poor taste out here (okay, I alone do) so don’t worry about what we pin or like. If we could do it ourselves, we would. Have a great day.

We actually did a full post on that specifically.
But with a small dark room it is best to give the room a little bit of color or warmth with a tone, we suggested a handful in that post. As far as popcorn ceilings there isn’t much you can do to hide it unless your landlord is willing to scrape it off or let you do it. Unfortunately there isn’t a really easy fix for that besides not looking up 😉 Good luck with the room. xx


I absolutely love these round ups!


I like the mid and low price rooms the best! Love those sofa’s and the art!


I’m new to your blog and am absolutely in love with everything. Love these layouts and your roundups. You and your blog posts are helping me create a home that I love to come home to. I have this area in my master that has a fireplace and a spot for an office area that I’m trying to figure out and this post helped a ton. I’d love to see some more mountain-y/outdoorsy rooms/ideas (a la your mountain home). We’re outdoorsy people living in so cal but we tend to lean more mountains/country than beach-y/Cali casual but we love simple, modern, clean. Love you & your work.


The blue/pink framed art is not working… need that beautiful print! ?

jean barros

Lovely review. Congratulations.


Those pics flip fast enough to give someone an epileptic fit!!
Could you please, please slow them down – numerous people have already asked for this in the past.
In hope, thanks.


Beautiful handmade area rugs to decorate any area. Designer rugs and carpets are available to shop at “Amer Rugs” rugs wholesaler in USA.

Visit here –


I love this idea of combining all these needs and they all look great.
But…doesn’t anyone have the need for a file cabinet. I know everyone is not paperless theses days.
Any suggestions would be helpful.


Go To Top