Friday, April 8, 2016

Our Home | Office Design Plan

master bedroom, office through doorway on right
It's hard to believe that we've lived in our home for more than 9 years and still have rooms that haven't been touched, but we do.  I tend to move slowly, part due to budget and part due to indecision.  When we bought our home we were a true dual career family.  After I quit my job when Charlie arrived, we really had to prioritize our spending and some years there just wasn't a lot of extra for pretty, but non functional updates.  I don't like to talk about money, because I know it is all relative.  I am grateful to live in a beautiful home, stay home with my children, and have a fun little part time business on the side, and if that means I can't always buy what I want when I want to, that is a very easy price to pay. (though I'm guilty of virtual shopping.. filling up the cart and not checking out...  tell me I'm not alone! :))

Our upstairs office has always been low on the priority list. However, it connects to our master bedroom (which I LOVE) and the two spaces couldn't be more inconsistent.  I thought this year it was time to prioritize replacing the 60+ year old carpet (Ew.), but once that decision was made, I really wanted to finish the rest of the space.  It is a small room that gets gorgeous light.  It looks out to lots of trees, with magnolias blooming in the late spring and the sound of birds singing at the first sign of a winter thaw all the way till the first frost.  It really does have potential!  It is farther away from the rest of the house too so it is a quiet and wonderful place to work.  While I call it Jimmy's office, I work in here often. (That's how I justified keeping this a very feminine looking space. ;))  I believe it was originally intended to be a dressing/sitting room since it has 3 closets, two for clothes and a linen cupboard.

A little green room inspiration...
Lauren Liess, her new study from Instagram
Laura Ashley favorite I've had forever and shared before

Here are my plans for the room... Blue and green, classic fabrics, dark wood antiques, and an English farmhouse feel (I'm consistent! )

The Lee Jofa floral (that Im obsessed with after using in a few client projects) is going on roman shades || the Les Indiennes small indigo print on a custom lamp shade for a large brass table lamp that sits on an antique bachelor's chest || the ticking will go on a wingback desk chair slipcover || the carpet will be a 100% wool berber || still debating on desk lamp versus table lamp (leaning a bit more toward table lamp) for on the desk but I love this desk light from Rejuvenation Hardware  || I just bought a 200 year old portrait (not this one) in an eBay auction.  Fingers crossed I love it as much in person as I do online since I exceeded my budget. || We have an antique secretary in the room already - not as nice as the one pictured here but same feel || the walls, windows, ceiling, closet doors, trim will all go green (I'll do a post next week on my paint contenders) || Lastly, I'll add blue and white pottery over the secretary and on the bachelor's chest.

I knew I wanted to find an antique portrait for this room and I've searched for a long time (2+ years to be exact).  They are tough to find in the right size, quality, and look.  1st Dibs has a great selection, see here but they are pricey.  Some can look a little creepy or mean, couldn't have that.  Many were just way too big.  I wanted a friendly, New England looking gent.  Graphically they are so great in a space and it is the one "masculine" addition I'm making to the office.  Here are some examples of using old portraits from pinterest...

Southern Living

Lee Ann Thornton via Coastal Living

I'll be back next week with before pictures of the office (they are scary) and a discussion on green paint.  I know my updates are coinciding with the One Room Challenge.  I thought about joining in, but I felt it would create unnecessary pressure.  I have painters and carpet installers scheduled and fabric ordered, so things should move along at a decent pace, but you never know with me. ;)  Looking forward to sharing the process with you regardless.


  1. I love your ideas for your study/office space. It will be fun to see the progress as you move ahead.
    Enjoy the weekend. I thoroughly enjoy your site/posts.

  2. Just beautiful! I love everything you do! I would love to know the source for the ticking stripe!! I can't seem to find one that I feel would hold up well for upholstery.

    1. I'm using a cotton duck ticking - perfect for upholstery! Just google blue duck ticking, you'll get a ton of options!!

  3. I know it will be beautiful like the rest of your home. I am the same way with taking my time decorating. Whenever I make too many quick decisions, I end up regretting something. Can't wait to see the room unfold!

  4. Can't wait to see your plan unfold! And hey, if you happen to finish in time for the ORC, you can jump in last minute 😉

  5. This is so perfect and charming! I have been in the same boat on choosing not to work outside of the home since my son was one. So I too have a few undecorated rooms in my house. We have been in our home for 12years and it needed all the stuff you cant see! The cost of that will suck the life right out of you.
    Have a great weekend!
    PS. you have me wanting to paint my trim a color!

  6. I love what you are thinking of doing in your office space! It is a bit anxiety producing selecting artwork. And, so exciting when it is even better than you thought! I am sure your antique painting will be perfect. Glad you are sharing your office plans here.

  7. I love your style and office plans. It will be fun to watch how your room comes together. Thanks for sharing!

  8. I love your home Tessa so I'm sure the office will be just as gorgeous as the rest of your home. I'm in the middle of helping my DIL make over my grandson's bedroom and thought you might like to know I bought two lamps similar to the one you showed at Target the other day for around $25 each! They are just beautiful and would have bought one for my house but just didn't have a place to use it.

    Looking forward to seeing this room come together!

  9. I really appreciate the deliberate pace at which you're decorating your home and your honesty about prioritizing living over decor; nonetheless, I'm glad you're designing another area in your already-beautiful home. Really excited to see more!

  10. Simply lovely, as is everything you do. Cannot wait to see it unfold. Thank you for sharing.

  11. Hello from California! I just found your blog and it is exquisite...another favorite!