Designing the Office/Guestroom

We’ve written before about the summer social season and its detrimental impact on our available time for housework. And while Aaron and I have been busy this summer, that is likely nothing compared to this fall, when I return to school full time. Classes start tomorrow, in fact, and with this deadline looming, Aaron and I have been working toward fashioning the small room at the top of the stairs into a home-office. The goal (it was Aaron’s brilliant idea, though I would love to take credit) is for me to have a place to study free of distractions. Come to think of it, I think Aaron just wants the TV and internet to himself.

Anyway, what this all comes down to is a scramble to actually finish a room, the first in our house! I’m not going to lie: I’m pretty excited about this.

The Scenario:

The room in question is small, about 9 ft x 7 ft, with a southwest facing window (resulting in hot hot sunlight streaming in, with no air conditioning). It currently houses the twin-size guest bed. There really isn’t another good room for this guest bed at the moment, so the room will have to serve the dual purpose of study area and guestroom. There are also plaster walls, one of which is wavy and uneven, with a few spots needing repair, and the other three of which are in good condition and have never been painted.

The Solution:

This awesome print, by Shand Kydd, appears more chartreuse and less yellow in reality

The wavy wall will probably do best with wallpaper to hide its unevenness, so that’s where our search began. I had two constraints in regards to wallpaper: (1) green and (2) gaudy. In general, I like wallpaper to be loud. I want the walls to say, “hey, this is wallpaper, and don’t you forget it!” For this particular room, I wanted the color scheme to be green, which will feel nice and calming during all-night study sessions.  I know this image looks very yellow, but the wallpaper is a delightful chartreuse-green in real life.  Plus, I think this image doesn’t do the print justice: the peacocks are about 21″ tall.

Once the wallpaper comes in at my local wallpaper supply store, I’ll match the lighter teal from the leaves/peacock tail for the paint color for the other three walls.  I think one wall will suffice for a pattern this bold, don’t you think?

Additionally, the bed will be on the 7 ft wall, and I’m making it into a daybed of sorts with lots of pillows in fuchsia, magenta, teal, chartreuse and beige.  The curtains will also be in some fabric to match the pillows. I’m hoping these will block some of that hot summer afternoon sun. Plus Aaron has been up in the hot attic running wiring for my new ceiling fan (he’s my favorite husband!), so it should be nice and cool in there. The coverlet for the bed is white, as is my desk and the trim around the door and window.

I had originally planned on ordering some anatomical line drawings like this one, but that was before I found the peacock. Now I’m not sure…

So I realize that classes start tomorrow, and that my space isn’t quite done yet. But cut us some slack! We’ve been trying to fit in as much of the summer social season as possible before school starts. I’ll update with the finished product, plus work-in-progress pictures, soon.

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