• Tia Christine

Setting Up My Studio Nook

As you may already know, my family and I moved from Germany back to the States in August. It's been a ride, but we're finally settling in. Everyone has been so nice where we live; if you've ever heard of Southern Hospitality, let me introduce you to its cousin, Midwestern Nice.

Anyway, our house has this really great little space that's perfect for an office and that's just what I claimed as my own for my studio and I love it. In my last post I talked about how I was searching for a good desk at various thrift and secondhand furniture stores. I needed a desk that had a space in the back for my tablet flex arm to grip onto, while being sturdy enough, aesthetically pleasing and not terribly expensive (not too much to ask, right?). I saw many cheap desks made of plastic and particle board, and most of them didn't really fit my idea of what I wanted my studio/office to look like. I was going for kind of a old study/vintage explorer vibe and desks like were pricey. Finally, I went to this one thrift store in my area and found this:

It was sticky and covered in various kinds of hair, it was scratched and cracked and just in altogether rough shape, BUT it was real wood and only $30. Now let me preface this by saying that I have never refinished anything in my life. I've always loved the idea of it, but I have just not had the opportunity until now. So I did some research and spoke to the lovely people at Lowe's and, over the course of a few weeks, purchased paint stripper, brushes, wood filler, scrapers, drop cloths, gloves, paint, paint rollers, sand paper sponges, and an orbit sander. The desk had been painted with two different kinds of paint to achieve what I can only guess was supposed to be a distressed look. When I finally managed to scrape that all off I was left with the original oil-based paint. I didn't want to deal with the serious paint thinner, so I sanded it down as smooth as I could and ended up with this:

I was so excited to start painting, I had picked a pretty, chocolatey brown shade for the main parts of the desk and a mossy green for the sides and inside of the drawers. I ordered some new hardware from Etsy as well, though their finish is a bit mismatched. However, I managed to make a desk that I love, flaws and all. All in all it came to less than $400, which would have been even less had I already had the tools I needed. Maybe I could have found something new for the same price, but I love the idea of taking something and giving it a new life. Plus this desk is just how I like it, I didn't settle at all and that makes me happy.

I still want to get some plants in here to hang in the window, and I have to find somewhere to put all my Cricut stuff, and buy a new printer, but otherwise it's complete and I love coming in here to work. It really helps me stay on task, which is something I struggle with a little as a freelancer. I started a new job recently as a graphic designer and it's great to have a place where I can come to work in the morning and leave in the evening, despite it still being my house. It makes meeting deadlines much easier.

So that's all, folks! I had originally planned to make this whole thing a vlog, but I just don't have the time right now to do all the editing. I hope you're all doing well and enjoying this beautiful October. It's currently 80 degrees F here and the leaves haven't really been turning or falling, which is disappointing, but I know it'll happen eventually. I'm also not in a hurry for winter, so I won't complain too much lol.

Until next time,


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