Office/Guest Room Makeover

I never really liked the old “office” in our house.  With a mish-mash of clunky inherited furniture and drab green walls, it was never a place that I really wanted to work.  Now, with a baby on the way the old office is soon to become the nursery, which means the guest room has to serve a dual purpose. It was the perfect opportunity to create a space that was both functional and inspiring to work in.

When we bought our house, the guest bedroom was a buttery baby yellow. It was fine but not very sophisticated so the first step was to repaint.

I swapped out the yellow for a calming grey on the walls, leaving all the moldings and trim bright white. Since I had already refinished the dresser and bed frame in a sleek black, the rest of the room started to take on a black, white and grey scheme with pops of yellow and gold for personality.  The gilded mirror is vintage. The flowers are dried cock’s comb from last year’s farmers market.

Besides repainting, I also rearranged the placement of the bed in the room.  Originally we had the head board placed against the other wall (right wall of this photo) so you could easily make the bed.  However, that would have left no space in the room for a desk.  By just rotating the bed and positioning it against the wall, it created enough space for a desk and chair, plus a much better flow for the room.

The same day I scored the gilded mirror, I found this awesome 1950s yellow chair at a different antique store.  The moment I laid eyes on it, I had to have it and at just $30 it was a steal of a deal.  The pillow cover is from The Home Centric on Etsy.

Since the room is not huge, I chose the slim, modern Parsons desk from West Elm and surrounded it with things that will inspire me while I work or blog, like my DIY idea board, fresh flowers and scented candles.  Every day supplies like pens and scissors look decidedly more chic in a vintage milk glass vase.

The closet got a major overhaul, organizing gift wrap and craft accessories into various storage bins, bags and shoe boxes. Reducing the extra clutter makes it much easier to find the items I need and make notes when I run out of supplies.

The final project will be to frame a very large world map for the large wall above the bed. Since framing something that large costs a fortune, I’m currently scheming ideas for a DIY framing project. Stay tuned!



Filed under Decorate

12 responses to “Office/Guest Room Makeover

  1. Meredith

    Speaking of DIY map frames, check out what A Soft Place to Land did for her son’s bedroom! I definitely plan on using this method, or some variance of it, for the large world map currently in my guest bedroom!

  2. I stumbled upon this blog called A Soft Spot to Land the other day that had links to69 different map projects. It might have some helpful ideas for your project.

  3. angela

    Hello, your new room is beautiful. I was wondering if you woudl share where you go to shop for antiques? I need to get some dining room chairs. I have never gone out to antique shops before. Thanks, Angela

    • Katie

      @angela – Not sure where you live but in Milwaukee there are a ton of great stores in Walker’s Point. I like Clinton Street Antiques and Fox Skylight Antiques a lot. The place I got the mirror was in Tosa but has since closed. Also, the Elkhorn Flea Market is fabulous! You can find dates for it at this link:

      I’m not an expert antique shopper by any means but I’ve found that the keys to finding good stuff are going often, knowing what kind of items you’re looking for and having the time/patience to dig around.

      • angela

        Hi Katie,
        I live in Brookfield/Elm Grove area. Thanks for the ideas as I have never rally gone out to look before. I want to check out the flea market this summer. I have heard really some really good things about that flea market. Thanks so much for your help, Angela

  4. Katie

    Thanks for all the great suggestions on map framing, ladies! I feel like I’m on the right track and these ideas and tips will be really helpful!

  5. Bekki


    Would you be willing to share what the name of the paint color is. I like the way it looks in your pictures; not too dark or too light. I have several swatches of grey shades on my wall and trying to decide what I want to do for the whole room. Thanks!

  6. v cute! i love the grey wall color you chose, it makes such a difference! xoxo jcd

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