Saturday, July 20

D.I.Y. "Simple Workspace" {for $100}

This little space of mine has been a long time coming...and I am so so SO very thankful for it now. We have been in SE Asia now for almost 16 months and up until now, I have been digging through a suitcase for all of the stuff that is now neatly put away and/or displayed so elegantly. 

I feel organized, productive, motivated, focused....

Now that I have this little gem, I can definitely attest to the fact that it was well worth the wait. It wasn't until it was all pieced together that I really started to calculate the total cost (because some of the items were bought months ago). I was pleasantly surprised that it only cost $100 (actually...about $15 more than that but I'll get to the price breakdown in a bit). The great news is that I believe this could cost you even less depending on your circumstances. The Mr. and I were both pretty happy campers when we realized that this really didn't break the bank. I think the Mr. is almost as happy as I am that I finally have my own little space (and that I'm no longer digging through an unorganized suitcase full of miscellaneous items like a mad person). Not to mention, it hardly takes up any space!

So, how do you create a workspace like this of your own? 

First, you need a cute little man and a cute big man to help you do all the manly work:

Too much cuteness. And I only had to pay them with hugs and kisses.

I've added some numbers to the photo below to help me break this down in the most organized way possible (lest I get scatter-brained and start rambling on and on about other awesome items I saw while buying my desk chair or shopping at IKEA...)

  1. Wall art -- FREE! Not only did I want something pretty to look at, I also wanted to distract the eye from the lovely light switch (which I'm now drawing your attention to). I printed some things straight from the internet, and other things I drew myself. It was all done with materials I already had on hand.

  2. Cork circle -- FREE (sort of..) This is actually one of 3 "heat pot stands"/ hot pads that come as a set from IKEA. The actual cost is $1.50 for the set. The reason I count this as 'sort of' free is because a friend of mine bought another set for me when her son decided to experiment the effect of scissors when brought in contact with one of my pot stands. As it turns out, cork board can be cut with scissors. I digress... (so much for staying on track with my numbered picture). I simply used one of my 5 pot stands as a place to stick some reminders.
  3. BYGEL rail and basket --$8 total--$5 for the basket, $3 for the rail. I LOVE THESE. I bought 3 of these several months ago without really knowing for sure how I was going to use them but knew that I would somehow regret not buying more than one. We now have one located in our kitchen, our bathroom, and finally, above my desk. You can also buy hooks to hang things from (as pictured above with my scissors), but that's up to you. The hooks come in a pack of 10 for $1.

  4. Bookends (that you can't really see) -- FREE! I already had these on hand and chances are, you probably already have something on hand that would make a great bookend. I've seen awesome ideas on Pinterest involving wrapping bricks or blocks of wood with scrapbook paper. 
    Fun Fact: The clock is from a market in Hong Kong!
  5. White bar stool -- $55 after a $20 dollar discount. This was definitely my splurge item. My options weren't many, after I narrowed it down to styles I liked and prices that fit my budget. The Mr. actually spotted this chair just as I began to slouch my shoulders and give up. This chair alone makes up over half the total price of my whole workspace area. However, for those of you reading this right now who live somewhere with yard sales, thrift stores, flea markets, etc...I'm confident you could probably find a much more awesome deal than me. And I should probably explain that we don't actually have an IKEA where we live. I only get to make trips to IKEA when we fly out of the country (hence, the reason for me buying 3 BYGEL rails and baskets).
  6. White and grey plastic drawers -- $23 (on sale). This is another item that I'm sure you can get cheaper elsewhere. However, in our city, these things can cost up to $50 for this same size!! I'm almost positive that these things were next to nothing at the local Walmart in the college town I lived in back in the States. Nevertheless, it was on sale and it was the cheapest one I could find that wasn't multi-colored with pictures of teddy bears plastered all over it.
  7. The desk and wall attachments -- $14.50 total. The desk itself actually consists of 2 white shelves that the Mr. pieced together so that I would have enough space to work with. Each shelf cost $5 and then the pieces that secured the desk to the wall cost $1.50 each.
  8. Herb "garden" -- $12. This part of the desk arrangement is obviously optional but it makes for some nice greenery at your desk space (that can later be used in the kitchen).

Let's do the math to make sure this all adds up:

$8 + $55 + $23 + $14.50 = $100.50 
Then, adding in the optional extras that I marked in red, the total cost comes to: $115
Not too bad, if I do say so myself. And like I said before, this could probably be done for even cheaper. I guess it all depends on your personal preference for a workspace and what you would like it to consist of. As for me, I hope to keep this space as clean and organized and simple as I possibly can...even if I can't keep the rest of my house that way ;-)
What about you? If given the opportunity to have the ideal workspace, what would it look like?


  1. HI! Just wanted you to know that you're being on our Saturday Pin It Party! Loved the detailed pictures and this post! Awesome job!

    1. Oh my goodness, Danielle. I just realized (a month late) that my reply I sent to you never went through! I feel awful. Thank you so much for featuring my post a few Saturdays ago!

  • Your work space is uh-mazing! I love it! Im pretty fond of you chair, that thing is cool! And the desk itself is genius. My grandma has one in her dressing room but the individual boards are too shallow to be any kind of real work space. Its too smart of you guys to piece two together.

    1. Thanks! I'm pretty much obsessed with my little workspace. Even though it's out in the open, I sort of feel like I'm escaping because it's high up and my toddler can't reach ;-) My husband was the brains behind piecing the two boards together. I'm always a fan of something that doesn't take up any floor space (especially since our small house has very little room to spare anyway).
      Thanks so much for stopping by!


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