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Using What I Have – My New Makeshift WFH “Desk” and the Most Hilarious IKEA (Non) Hack

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Remember when I had this fantasy of that beautiful desk next to this massive A-frame window, looking at the trees full of snow? That fantasy ended this week as it was clear that I was far too “available” to our kids, and they were too distracting to me. The biggest issue was the zoom calls with the soundtrack of Annie BLASTING in the background, so I had to go into the guest room near the wifi and sit on the ground. But don’t worry because the garage was still full of decor and furniture options from the shoot last year, so I pulled something together, but it’s not good YET. Let’s start with “the desk”…

That table has a story. Last year I found it at a thrift store for $20 but it was orange-y and shiny (as shown on the left). We were attempting some fun stories on how to updated thrifted pieces – great idea. I was drawn to the clean lines and Parsons style, and it was solid wood. Also great. It could be a lovely entry table, sofa table, console, etc. So Emily B. and Grace (and myself) were just going to simply strip it to its original pretty wood, so easy. But then it started raining in the middle of our DIYing. So Emily took it to Ross Allen’s shop who gave us shelter. Then, for whatever reason, we didn’t finish it there (oh I think because we wanted to shoot the process), so she brought it back to her backyard where we shot the content (that we now can’t find). Hilariously, it started raining again so we had to wait till the next day to finish. I think Emily B. finished it on her own time inside, I don’t remember BUT THE POINT IS, HOURS – likely a day and a half of time was spent on this table and guess what it turned out to look like? A CHEAP IKEA TABLE. That’s right, hundreds of dollars of someone’s time to make a simple vintage $20 table look like an IKEA TABLE. Don’t get me wrong, it’s nice, but considering it cost so much it was a fail. Keep reading and/or just watch this behind the scenes video (after the ad) if you want more of the story:

We meant to post about it on stories mostly because it’s HILARIOUS that a stupid design DIY blogger spent $300 in time + likely $100 in materials on a $20 “IKEA” table, but never did. I kept the table because thought it would work in the entry up here, but when it was a bit too deep so I shoved it in the garage where it became a shelf for props.

So last week I pulled it out and thought maybe it could be my desk but it’s not desk height. It’s 22″ tall when a normal desk is between 28″ – 30″ tall. BUT I came up with a genius hack (as a reminder I won Design Star for a reason) – you just put each leg on a paint can of your choice. It could be any color, any brand – so much flexibility!

So my options are as follows:

  1. Live with the paint cans and maybe if I wasn’t a blogger/designer I would do that – I’m secretly janky like that, but the legs have fallen off a couple times…
  2. Duck tape the legs to each paint can – I love a good metallic accent. 🙂
  3. Buy a new desk. But meh – feels like I can make this work and I’ve already accidentally invested so much into this stupid “desk” so I may as well use it. Plus the size, color, and style of it is actually kinda nice in front of this door.
  4. Buy leg extenders and attempt to drill them into current “desk” legs. I looked to see if I could just replace the legs altogether, but it’s actually solidly made – they don’t just screw off. So I need to buy new sofa legs, and I need at least 6″ of height, and the width of the legs is a little over 2″, which was harder to find. BUT GUESS WHERE I FOUND THEM? MOTHER LOVING IKEA. So now I’m like, is this an actual vintage IKEA table?? I honestly couldn’t find these legs anywhere else and the almost perfect match in style, color, and dimensions happen to be sold there. You guys, I like IKEA, that’s not it – I just think its HILARIOUS that I’m now sinking even more money and time making a vintage “IKEA” table to look like an actually less expensive IKEA table. The legs are called BURFJORD by the way. BURFJORD! Seems appropriate.

Now the dimensions of those new legs might be 1/4″ off so they might look super dumb. I was thinking of painting them white so if they are off at least they’ll look intentional. I did look around but everything else was more decorative, looked try-hard, and dumb. No castors were more than a few inches and 6″ was the minimum I needed (and that’s with the low sherpa chair. The other “normal height” chair was OK but I couldn’t cross my legs and – read in English accent, my goodness I am a lady). These stupid IKEA legs are 7″ high so I might be able to use with a non-lounge chair (although I kinda love sitting in this warm hug of this chair – if you are in the market it’s affordable and so comfortable.)

Sorry, this room was crazy backlit so it’s really hard to shoot – and yes I, like you, miss having professional photographs. Now onto the chair. Regardless if I use the sherpa lounge chair or the vintage dining chair, I figured I’d reupholster its seat. But I don’t want to order yardage for this small of a project, so I need to pull from my fabric hoard or maybe massacre one of my blankets or Brian’s vintage Grateful Dead shirts. OMG should I do that for father’s day? Take his favorite vintage Dead shirt that he probably spent like $70 on off of Instagram and upholster a chair in it then wrap it in a big bow for him? HAPPY FATHERS DAY! He’d LOVE THAT. Well, ok first I’m going to try some green velvet fabric I found since it’s simple, I have enough, works in the room, yadda yadda – don’t worry I’ll do an IGTV of it.

Lastly, I found that pleated shade (with four others) for a dollar at a thrift store in Palm Springs a couple of months ago with the plan of painting it. But then I stuck it on that Target lamp base that I had in the garage and realized that maybe I don’t need to paint it? I liked the idea of doing it dark, but now I think I actually like it light. In this room, which is super neutral it doesn’t look bad – it looks kinda good. I would paint it green (to work with the headboard) but imagine how hilarious a green shade on a brown base would look (even though the tree motif is my favorite one to employ as seen in Elliot’s first and second nursery.)

As I was writing this post, I realized that this set up under the window could be better – so I tried it over there.

Not bad. Kinda nice actually. But you see we have the “one leg on a rug” problem which enrages me as a human being designer. We could pull it forward to “clear” the leg/paint can. But then only two legs of the chair would still be on it and while I can live with having legs be on paint cans, I truly don’t think I could live with having the left two legs of a chair on a rug and the right two on the floor. I would have to blindfold myself daily before going into that room.

I tried it for a couple of hours and I just didn’t like sitting there as much as in front of the doors, which is odd. And yes these doors are functional but right now they go out to a dirt patch that will be our future hot tub deck/room (also any recs on a hot tub??).

Once the legs get here I’m going to try to make it cute enough to show you (I need a tree, guys – any online plant resources? update – that post coming this Saturday).

But now lets party in the comments about the “desk” legs, lampshade color options and which chair. This is the “making it work” content that is what OG blogging was about, before production budgets, professional photographers and partnerships. It’s admittedly very fun to look around and find something to “make it work”.

In case you are wondering no, the kids don’t leave me alone still. They both beg to eat lunch in here with me even though I offer to come to the table. It’s pretty darn cute and I’m in the “don’t say no to your kids wanting to snuggle you” phase of life right now so it’s fine. In the mornings I pour coffee and check all our numbers and comments and now Charlie asks to see “how the blog is doing” (Our traffic tracking system has a daily graph that shows how it’s going for a “regular Wednesday” for instance). I guess seeing Brian and I both “working” for the blog has been super fun for them.

Anyway, it’s hard to be motivated to make this work when I have such a pretty loft office, but maybe if we stay here long term I’ll bring that whole set up down here, store this bed and Brian can get his dream shuffleboard up there… Thoughts?

Fin Mark

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Dears! Not about the post itself but about the video that pops out of the frame and follows me while I scroll down the page on my phone. Recently it’s been missing its “close” button and it’s really annoying. Right now I actually have to type “blind” as it’s covering the comment area. Also, there’s enough publicity on the page to make me go nuts when there’s another moving thing that I cannot do away with while I read the text and look at the photos. My brain’s going crazy, it’s like the opposite of your put-together interiors 🙂 please do something about it!

Rose

🙁 same

Juliet

The same thing has been happening to me. The video has made me leave the blog several times this week without getting to read anything.

Quick question so we can have out IT team look into it! Is anyone having this problem looking at the post on mobile and tablet? Or is this happening on desktop as well? Thank you! We will try to get this fixed ASAP.

Lucy

I have been reading on a laptop computer and have had no issues.

Teri

same

Abigail

It only happens on mobile for me–no issues on desktop.

Abby

also – i love the videos in the middle! since I’m WFH i can finally watch your videos. no need to plug in headphones or awkwardly hide my screen 🙂

Veronica

I didn’t see anything like that on desktop.

Sona Nast

I’m looking at this post on a MacBook Pro. Video was in the middle of the page and it took about three tries of hitting the stop button to make it stop playing (after I watched it). I watched the ad and the video and then another ad started and I couldn’t get it to stop at first.

Jane

Except same here except it was on the bottom left of the page. It popped up three times as I read the post and I had to close it every time so I could see the full text. Didn’t even think about it really though until I saw that a lot of other people were having issues!

Jane

Same here meaning – this happened on my Macbook Pro.

Abby

no issues on my laptop!

Brigitte

I’m having the same issue on my phone. I cannot close the window.

Anne

I have the same problem, but it only happens to me on my phone!

Sarah

happened to me on both the mobile and the tablet. got so annoyed with it yesterday as it followed me around and blocked the post (with, as others said, no way to close it) it that i stopped reading the post altogether. hope you get it fixed 🙂

AK

It’s happening on my laptop and mobile. The ad which normally stays on the bottom of the screen is floating to the middle of the screen without a close button and blocking paragraphs of content. Thanks!!

Mobile

Heather

I had it on my phone

x

I’m on an old Chromebook and the video with the missing close button hit me the other day. Today my main aggravation is the scrolling add all up and down the right side of the page and the the horizontal bar for the same freaking product! that goes all all the way across the bottom and when I click the x to close it it just opens the ad in a new tab. I know you need to make money but it’s getting to be too difficult to read this site anymore.

Also, just want to take another opportunity to say how much I hate the set up on the homepage where there is a GIANT picture that no matter how I set my screen resolution, you can only see a tiny bit of the top of the picture and then you have to scroll way down to see the title of the article. It should be text at the top, picture under. That way, I can quickly scan to see if I want to read it or if it doesn’t grab me, I can slip it and come back tomorrow.

Trisha

It is happening when I read on my phone. It’s horrible. It keeps playing the video on a loop with no way to get rid of it.

Pamela Hiar

iPad

Kate

Thank you for this!!! I too have been using an ikea like table for my new “work from home” setup but using LEGO, you read that right, to raise the legs up! After reading this I realized I too have 4 quart sized paint containers and replaced the LEGO setup immediately!??‍♀️ I feel more like a grownup. Thank you and your team for everything you do!

Kristin

Can I chime in with more feedback on the video? I kind of hate it. Or perhaps more accurately, my MacBook kind of hates it. It kills my computer, slows everything down, makes things freeze, and just generally gums up the works. I honestly try to avoid coming to the blog (v. reading posts via an RSS reader) because of the video. I’m all for video, but it’s great to have to choice to launch them, v. having them play automatically.

Liz

me too…. it takes a few goes and then finally you can close the video and read the rest of the post.

Lisa

Ha I feel you! I recently moved and decided to take the cute mid century desk with me and leave the slightly higher and wider actual work desk in my parents garage thinking I’d only sit at it occasionally anyway and well the vintage one is definitely cuter – I mayyyy be starting to regret that decision as its just a few inches too low XD not actually that great for working on all day every day… – thus I can also recommend books unter table legs if they are sturdy enough! 😛 Could luck figuring out your desk situation! I acutally quite like it – but not gonna lie – also thought it was from ikea at first… it’s the shape in combination with that tone of wood I think? but a nice desk still! 🙂 and painting the bottom of the legs white sounds cute actually! (and if it was me: get it as high as possible! being able to sit on a proper chair that lets you sit straight is real nice (she said from her too low table..))

Rusty

Yes! Get a proper chair in there. Or look forward to aches and pains.

Heather Amsden

Yes, painting the legs white could look great. Or you could paint the extensions And the top white? Could be fun.

This is hilarious, thanks for sharing and keeping it real. Definitely sounds like a good marriage move to upholster using an expensive vintage t-shirt for Father’s Day, lol. I am also incredibly charmed by Charlie’s interest in web analytics.

I didn’t really have ideas or opinions on the desk table leg height situation, but in the spirit of making things work, if the Ikea legs are slightly too off in dimensions to work, what about going with a different shape for the leg boosters instead? I thought at first of some kind of artsy book stacking situation–next hot Instagram trend, the rainbow table leg lifter stacks–but then what about stacks of flat round rings? Like on my children’s wooden toy stacker, that kind of thing. It’ll look like the table is wearing shorts wooden leg warmers!!!!!! Clearly a winning argument, esp in a scandi cabin lol.

KP

I love that idea

Christy

Oh, the irony. Kind of like life right now. All I want is to be with my people I love and that’s the last thing that should happen if I love them. Enjoyed this making-it-work post — sometimes life just works out that way. 🙂

Karen

I think that was the closest thing to seeing your brain in action ever shown on this blog. And probably if I photographed my bip-bops it would resemble this. Funny. I love your paint can ikea desk.
Don’t paint the shade.

KP

I’m not sure your plan for the BURFJORD legs is going to work. I’ve used these to add to the bottom of a bookcase. They need to screw into a metal plate (purchased separately), which you would need to mount to the bottom of your current legs, so not only will the dimensions of the two sets of legs be off, but you’ll see this thick metal plate in the connecting space. Also, the metal plate might be bigger than the existing legs? Also it may end up being wobbly. I do feel your pain though, coming from someone who has been working 10 hours a day from a 1950s desk (that was purchased more for looks than for function) for the past 5 weeks. It’s definitely not ergonomic but I’m doing temporary hacks where I can (coffee table books stacked under monitor, etc.) knowing that one day this will all be over and I will want the pretty desk back. I guess what I’m saying is it’s not forever, maybe there’s nothing wrong with paint cans for a while. I do think the traditional metal paint cans would give you more height and be less janky, if you have… Read more »

J

Wow. My brain. Works exactly the same way yours works. I loved reading this. Best wishes. ?.

Cute Charlie “how’s the blog doing”?!

tell Charlie, numbers aside, he has a fun family who are helping bring cheer to the world and that he brings cheer too! That’s how the blog is doing. (Also hope the wed. Graph looks good!!)

I immediately pictured him at the head of a conference table in a suit asking that question.

Jeanine

Em, Why not put the desk on industrial casters? For height and the ability to move it anywhere.

Jessica

Hahaha yasss shuffleboard! You should totally switch the spaces up because CONTENT 😉 😉 😉 And then you can source all your bits and bobs from online vintage/antique/handmade/local sources… And then tell us all about how to source our dream WFH space! <3

Oh and fyi the "loft office" link is returning a server error (503 Bad Gateway). Obvs I could just go to the mountain house project and look but thought you might want to fix it 🙂

Jessica

NM, the link works in Chrome ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Jessica

Hm, I mean to say “source our dream WFH space without leaving the house”

Georgia

I would take the desk from the loft and put it in that guest room, against the french doors if that’s best. I’d rearrange the furniture in that guest room, so that it can accommodate the desk, ie; pushing the bed aside, etc. Especially since you aren’t going to be having guests in there for a while.

Then I’d gather up some of the kid-friendly tables and chairs you have around, and make the loft the school. So kids aren’t schooling where they eat, help you cook, play, watch TV, etc. So the loft becomes a separate place – just for school, and those items related to school. In the way that you thought it would be a separate space for an office.

Maybe donate the “Ikea” table before it costs anyone more money?

Isabelle

I second this idea Georgia!

Sahaja Carpenter

This is a great idea!! you can always reset the guest room later.

Rusty

THIS!!! Principal Henderson can have a proper s hool and the kids will likely be more focused when they’re at school.

You need a better work space. You’re keeping the boat afloat and it needs to be the priority.

Mosie

How about wooden bed risers? You might be able to find them in a shade that blends with the legs, or just paint them. Black would look great. I have a regular height kitchen table, but at Christmas, when I am baking lots of bread, I pull out my risers and elevate my table to island height. I’m punching and kneading bread dough for hours and this saves my back a lot of strain. Plus, no installation necessary…..the table leg just nestles into a recess. Good luck with your project! PS — I once bought funky little metal armchairs at a thrift/maybe antique store, and dragged them home with the idea of recovering the seats. I thought I might have actually bagged a mid century find and intended to do some research as soon as the seats were done. No problem there, though…..as soon as I removed the seats the IKEA brand name on the frame became visible. Saved me a ton of googling. The chairs were $50 each which was most likely close to the original price, give or take. And I love them the same as I did when I thought they might help me pay off my… Read more »

Mosie

Emily, me again. I just checked on Amazon and they have TONS of wooden risers, every color, style and height you could imagine. I didn’t even know you could get a selection of heights but that’s even more important to a desk than a bed so I’m guessing you will easily find something that would work. Well priced, too. Take a look.

Kel

Good idea and find, Mosie!

Kellie

I hope you end up posting about hot tubs. My husband really wants to install one at our cabin but they are inherently ugly. I like the look of cedar tubs but they aren’t comfortable enough for him. We are stuck right now. I’d love a hot tub solution that would make us both happy.

j

ha! I read this as “I hope you end up posting about hot hubs.”
myohmy i need to get out of the house.

Victoria

Young house love put one in at their beach house and it was super cute.

Karen

You must go for a Hot Springs (brand). It’s by far the best in reliability and bells and whistles – if you don’t go crazy for the in-spa sound system which IMO is totally not necessary. Expensive, yes, but also comparable to Jacuzzi. We haven’t tried Jacuzzi, but Hot Springs allows you to change out the jets to the type you really want/need and I loved that option. We opted for a cheaper one in our current house and I’m not happy with it at all, so it’s staying with this house when we move.

As far as “look” – none of them will take home any prizes, but it’s what it is – a hot tub.

Melissa

I personally don’t have a problem with the desk, but if you hate it it’s silly to spend anymore money on it. I like the dining chair with it. Maybe you could just take breaks in your “hug” chair. We all need one right now! For the lamp, maybe paint the base, not the shade.

Anna

Yes! Love seeing you tap into your collection of thrifted items, and “making things work”! This is far more fun for me to see, as I like the decision making process, and I like the play aspect of this. Honestly, I was rearranging little things yesterday, and it’s all about the subtle swap outs. Fun to see this post and relate.

Reva

I’m loving this “make it work” post 🙂 not too many thoughts other than I think the leg extenders could look nice painted white. Hope you all are hanging in there!

Sahaja

I don’t have any suggestions better than the bed risers or switching to the loft desk that other people said above. But please don’t paint the shade -it’s somehow so perfect on that lamp base. <3

NDI (Natural Decorations Inc) is a great trade resource for faux plants! Or if you want a real one you can order from Bloomscape ?

Heather Amsden

LOVE Bloomscape!

Debrah

Ha! Great post. I’ve used tall ( grande ) coffee mugs turned upside down to elevate tables in a pinch ! (Handles turned to the inside corner) I generally used white and the sizes/heights varied depending on needs. This makeshift turned into long term and was appreciated so much it became a go-to. Mason jars filled with sand works also. A hardware store hack is to have angle iron cut to length and attached to at least 2corners . It should travel up the legs enough to get at least a couple of screws in it. I generally painted these flat black to mimic wrought iron. Vintage kitchen work tables (My first victims)are notorious for being too short for modern living so these hacks came into play to solve those kinds of problems . I’m sure some really clever solution will win out. Can’t wait to see !

Renee

I like the lampshade as it is but am wondering if you could just dip the bottom of it in green paint? I think it would be a nice accent.

Ellie

1. This post felt like an old post in the best way. I do kind of miss the simpler times of blogging 🙂
2. I wouldn’t be surprised if the desk is old IKEA haha. My dad had a pair of Billy bookcases from the 80s that are solid and in really good shape. I can’t wait to see with the new legs!! The whole setup in front of the doors is great and looks so nice and bright.

Kristie

Wait, Palm Springs has a thrift store?

Madison

Just wanted to pop in and say thoroughly enjoyed this post! Incredibly relevant to today but also felt super relatable. Talking about the functionality! Also you pictures are amazing at least on a phone because of your beautiful furniture pieces and well lit spaces. All you really need.

Chelsea

I love this post so much. It is this kind of writing that made me start reading the blog.

Liz

Yes… Hearing your mind, Emily, is a big draw to your blog!

Rusty

Let’s get technical … ergonomically, you NEED a desk that’s the right height and a chair that isn’t going to make your posture and, later, your back, hips, legs suffer down the track. Really, you’re keeping your business afloat, during a freaking pandemic, with your staff all working remotely… take care of yourself and do yourself a favour … bring your office furniture into that guest bedroom and be able to do your thing! Take care of you, so you can do the bezt you can for your business. All that aside, it’s so, so good to have this real, rustic and pared down content! I find myself looking forward to checking the blog (“the” because, really, nothing else is coming close design-wise since the lockdown), because of the very real and relatable content. You always say “done is better than perfect” and add some wierdness, and this is exactly what we all need right now, in all of our respective corners of the world. What you and your team are showing us is, we really are all in this together and we’re all working our way through the unexpected and just making things work! Accolades to you, Emily. You… Read more »

Jenms

This is so great! I’ve been shuffling my work-from-home setup around to different areas of the house, and now I wish I had documented those little journeys!

Wendy

U Line for locking casters.

Trish

Also encountering WFH problems! I have a functional home office, but the wifi is not great for zoom calls. My solution was to purchase two c-tables to float in rooms with doors and good wifi. They’re lightweight and slide over any chair for a makeshift desk. Not a full-time work setup, but 100% fine for a few calls.

Molly

Love this “make it work with what you have” post! That’s what we’re all doing right now. My humble (as in I shoved my round patio table into my bedroom corner for a desk) suggestion is to move all of the furniture around so the guest room functions more fully as an office … where you or Brian can close the door. ? it’s a lovely space!

Kate

I wrote this in another comment but in case it got missed: Maybe you could just keep the the short desk as is, kid-sized, & use it for them, & move the large table/desk down to the guest room!

raq

Hi! Love the LOFT office, curious why you aren’t working in there?

Kate

I think you might have missed the first paragraph of this post. Emily mentioned that the loft was too noisy & accessible to the kids, especially for Zoom calls.

raq

ugh I did miss it!!!! silly me

Suzanne

The timing of this is perfect! While I’m not modifying a work at home space, my daughter has a IKEA LACK table as a nightstand, and with her new bed it is too short. I’m going to check out the legs you mentioned. I’m sad you don’t get to work in that beautiful loft, but I’m excited to see how you make this “desk” work.

Victoria

Since you’re not having guests any time soon, what if you just put the bed in the garage for a while, and bring your big desk in here and make it an actual office for a while? And the kids could use the smaller desk for school or art, Lego whatever. Love these posts so much right now!

Roberta Davis

Don’t cut up Brian’s Dead shirts, just sayin’! I could be wrong, but that might not be a pleasant surprise for him! lol I agree with the suggestion that you move your real desk into this room while you are working at home. Make this room your office during this sheltering in place time. Maybe you could move the bed out to the loft for lounging/play and story-time? Just temporarily! You do need a good, ergonomic desk set-up and though bed risers seem like a good solution (better than paint cans, from a falling-off perspective)- they too might be too short or just slightly off of the ideal height to keep you healthy. Then you can also move the rug to a perfect position, if your desk chair needs to be on a rug. I think I would keep the desk away from the window to reduce glare on the screen or too much back light. I also like the idea of using that table for the kids to color/craft on. I was thinking the same when I read the other comment. Or put it in one of their spaces to be a shelter to crawl under and on top… Read more »

Heather Amsden

OMG Emily this made me laugh so hard. The whole thing about the desk – I have had that same thing happen. Now I always ask myself, ‘do they have this at Ikea?’ before hacking anything. Anyway, great story, can’t wait to see the legs when they arrrive.
Also, just ordered plants from Bloomscape a couple of weeks ago. Their packaging is a feat of engineering and the plants are in excellent condition.
Also, go with the green velvet. That will look SO nice in there. And I vote for not painting the shade dark.

Stephanie M Davis

The “ikea” desk should probably work out just fine once raised. But the chairs…well if it was me I would use that beautiful Guido Faleschini you have in the loft. it would be sooo much more comfortable. I actually have a set of these chairs that i’m trying to find someone to recover for me. Most comfortable chair I’ve ever had bar none.

Lauren

Emily, I’m not sure I’ve laughed out loud reading a post of yours quite like this. I’ve been reading for probably 7 years and this voice, this real, silly, not curated voice (still well written) is just the most fun to read.

Your design dilemma cracks me up because it’s relatable and sounds like the crazy conversations I have in my head about my design problems. Thank you for being genuine. Can I encourage you, more writing like this.

And as for the office, if it were me, I’d move over the bed so it’s pushed up against the closet (no reason to tear the whole thing down, because: work). And move your loft table/desk in front of that beautiful French door, keep one side tables for the bed if it fits and adjust the rug accordingly. Plus, phone meetings from a horizontal position … not a bad idea.

Then turn the loft into a shuffleboard area, or rappel from the balcony for gym class, turn it into a fort or whatever other fun things you all come up with.

Thank you for a lunch time laugh.

LE

Stacking can under legs is near and dear my heart. When we were first married we tore out a nasty kitchen, tiled the floor, got new appliances but saved for a year for cupboards. So in the interim we lived with folding tables for counters, Rubbermaid tubs full of cooking supplies underneath and a white plastic laundry sink balanced on pineapple and tuna cans to connect the plumbing of the sink to the correct height. Ha. This whole thing cracked me up.

Brigitte

What about wooden toys to make it fun? Do you already have 4 wooden toys of the same height from your available props? In the alternative you could order this wooden block set and stack to the appropriate height? Each block is 1.8 inches tall, so 3 blocks for each leg? https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B007B28CQY/ref=as_li_tl?imprToken=7SqxqokHyLrMKFrlPQa8Fg&slotNum=11&ie=UTF8&tag=biipgf_121318_best-wooden-toys-20&camp=1789&creative=9325&linkCode=w61&creativeASIN=B007B28CQY&linkId=a366c04ca8eed9c8eb57f5815e801928

milo

Love this post and the super adorable Charlie question 🙂 The group help on this and the design agony posts were are so good!

priscilla

Emily, when you first posted the loft office I had to giggle at your goal of actually getting any work done there! I didn’t say anything because I knew you’d figure it out. Hilarious story of the Ikea-like “desk”. Can’t wait to see what you end up with! I <3 your posts.

Jessica

I love this “keeping it real” post! We are all working with what we have right now. I imagine that’s tough as a content creator but I appreciate the honesty with the paint cans here. Looking forward to seeing the “finished” product

Elisabeth

I bought plants from the Sill (without planters — I had those). They were expensive, but they were delivered in excellent condition and they’re beautiful!

KPH

What if you switched out your chair for something lower instead? A bolster or ottoman or cushion or stool… There are actually a lot of health benefits to changing up your seating to be closer to a squat… Check out nutritiousmovement.com where a bio mechanist writes and has photos of more dynamic work spaces.

I really love this post and your voice. You have a great sense of humor. <3

I saw the comment about needing plates for attaching the BURFJORD, but it seems like if you drill holes for them and wood glue the sh*t out of it, it'll be fine, or at least sturdier than paint cans. ?I'm all for a good hack.

Ren

i decided that now was a good time to paint my home office and moved my two screen set up to the dining room. Not my best move. i actually kind of love the idea of those doors swinging open and having this amazing work outside set up right at your fingertips. it snowed in wisconsin last night so I would love for some nice weather to sit outside and take a conference call at!

Julie

What about, rather than raising each leg individually, running a chunky board (or stack of boards) from the front legs to the back legs on each of the sides, essentially turning it into a trestle table (like this, but without the center stretcher bar: https://www.potterybarn.com/products/jade-reclaimed-wood-dining-table-mp/?pkey=cdining-tables&isx=0.0.20425.71484375). You could make it as tall as you wanted, and the boards could be painted a different color if you couldn’t match your existing wood finish. Even if it didn’t get you the full height you wanted, you could either add additional legs or casters to the bottom of the boards, which would then essentially look like stretchers.

Not to worry about the paint cans, though! My husband currently has the legs of our desk jacked up on heavy duty, black and yellow storage bins from the garage to make it standing height. It looks ridiculous, but gets the job done. 🙂

Cynthia

I LOVE you making things work with what’s in hand. I told my daughter years ago that I could make a Halloween costume without spending any money and she was the cutest wood nymph sparkle fairy ever with wings and everything! This would be a great monthly or weekly design challenge series. Also, what about noise cancelling headphones that connect to your Wifi?

Ha! After reading this post and the one about renovating your children’s room, my strong advice to you is to give up thrift shopping!

elle

You know that video that pops up and is supposed to move over to the right panel and keep going at warp speed to distract you? Well, it doesn’t go over to the right. It stays on the left and there is no way to close it out and it covers half the width of the text of the post and on my little laptop covers about a third of the text from top to bottom so it makes it almost impossible to read the post. This is isn’t the first time it has happened on this blog and it is really REALLY annoying. SO annoying, in fact, that I don’t finish reading the blog and don’t read the comments and feel very very frustrated. And it is covering the comment section here where I am typing, so I can’t even proof what I have typed so I hope it isn’t awful. Hope you can fix this.

Joanna

This sounded like a slightly insane person wrote it, in absolutely the best possible way. I was in TEARS by the time I got to the part about maybe upholstering the chair with one of Brian’s tshirts. Dying. Thank you.

Regarding hot tubs, check out Costco. We did a bunch of research and determined you kind of have two choices: spend an arm and a leg with Hot Spring, which has a good reputation, or buy something admittedly ugly but very comfortable and soooo reasonably priced from Costco (which also has excellent customer service). Think carefully about what features you actually care about. Remember, it’s mostly supposed to be a place for a hot soak, so lights, speakers, etc. are kind of unnecessary and drive the price way up.

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