A stylish and practical home office renovated from an unused guest bedroom.
WORDS Carol Watson
As more people embrace the shift in traditional 9 to 5 work practices and adapt to the flexibility and convenience of working away from the office, the importance of a functional and productive workspace at home, is now more in demand than ever before.
Most new homes are built with a home office or study but for those living in older houses, it is often the unused guest bedroom that gradually takes on a new purpose and becomes the home office. Such was the case for this client, who put together a brief for Paul Cree, Renovation Specialist at Refresh Renovations in Melbourne, to turn an unused bedroom into a modern, stylish home office, suitable for two people to work in.
The 3.3m x 4.0m room needed to include a meeting table, that could be used for up to 4 people, have plenty of storage for files and have generous desk space. Task lighting was very important, to provide optimum light for both daytime and evening work.
Having used Refresh Renovations to renovate both bathrooms in the house in the past, the client was familiar with the Refresh process and was very happy to have Paul and his Construction Manager, Tas Boucher, return to take on the next step in the phased renovation of the house.
“The Refresh approach is highly professional and I had confidence that my brief would be met and would stay within budget. I felt safe in their hands,” said the client.
Work commenced with stripping out the room and removing the 1970’s wallpaper and the old wardrobe. The worn carpet was removed to reveal the original hardwood flooring, which was then sanded and polished, using a water-based, polyurethane satin finish.
“The room had just one single power outlet, so we needed to take great care when planning the power and networking needs, whilst also factoring in future requirements, if additional office equipment was added to the room,” explained Paul. “New power outlets and network connections were wired to ensure practicality and functionality, with additional features such as USB charging points at desk level,” he added.
A key design element of the room is a solid timber, floating shelf, installed above the desk area, which complements the look and feel of the newly polished wooden floor. The shelf was built with substantial steel fixtures within the wall structure to make it strong enough to support heavy document files. Ledlux Strix LED Copper Pendants from Beacon Lighting provide overhead lighting, whilst recessed LED strip lighting under the shelf, adds a further design feature that contributes greatly to the ambience of the room.
The choice of warm grey for the walls adds a contemporary feel to the new office, whilst also providing a neutral background to the dark blue wall behind the desk area.
“Careful planning of small features can make a big difference to how well an office space performs. The custom design of all the cabinetry makes the best use of the available space, with the gloss finish helping to reflect light back into the room. The concrete effect bench-top provides a modern industrial look to the office space,” explained Paul. The original curtains were replaced with timber plantation shutters, which not only add style to the room but can also be adjusted as needed, to control the glare of sunlight on the computer screens,” he added.
The project was completed in just 3 weeks, with no delays or unforeseen issues. It came in below the original budget estimate of $15,000 AUD with a final total spend of $13,450 AUD.
“I don’t think there is anything we would do differently. It really is a lovely space to work in, both functionally and aesthetically,” said a very happy client.
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*All information is believed to be true at the time of publishing and is subject to change.