Since we first moved into this house I have always wished that our 'front room' (that one room that usually has a couple couches and chairs for when people visit, but that otherwise serves no purpose) was more useful.
I decided to make some changes to better define the space and give the room a lot more utility as an office.

The Finished Room

Before Photos
Planning and Process

I do 3D modeling as a hobby, and decided to see what I could come up with by modeling my office.

I have always enjoyed large desks, and wished that I could have separate workstations for different projects. (in this case, I wanted a computer area for gaming and work, and an open area for painting, or for my wife to do scrapbooking, one of her hobbies)

After a couple of iterations, I was happy with the design. I knew a couple of pieces that IKEA would be able to provide, and modeled them based off of their website. The whole 3D process took a couple nights, and had a couple rounds of feedback with others at work. One of the ideas was to pull the desk away from the wall to provide a cable area, and also to put lights on the back for the wall.

Demolition

Some people think demolition is fun. Sore, if you are tearing things out with a hammer, but for the most part, getting all the crap out of the room took a long time. I threw away so much stuff that I had just been hoarding because of semi-sentimental reasons, or because it "Might be useful someday".

Some things I just had to move around, as it would have been a pain to mode into another part of the house during this part of the project. (speaker also important for music!)

Well, all cleaned up now. Ready for the wood floor!

Wood Floor

Sam's Club special. Went in expecting to pay about $300 ish for 150sq ft. of flooring, but low and behold, it was on sale! Saved me almost a hundred bucks, which I used to purchase some Phillips Hue lighting.

Unfortunately, I forgot to take in-progress shots of the wood floor. It took me about 5 hours to do.

IKEA, ASSEMBLE!

Officer, I can explain... (thankfully I didn't have to) Getting the tabletops was a pain because they were out of stock but would be getting "More In Tomorrow" for 4 days in a row. Finally, one arrived on the last day.

I didn't have any room to spare.

Aaand... Christmas came early! Good thing I budged my time and gave myself an entire evening/night to put these together. It took all of that time, I was surprised. Nearly 45 minutes each piece. (didn't help I was watching a movie I am sure.)

Photo from the next morning. All ready for the desk assembly!

Desk Assembly

Cracked open the countertop for a peek, and it is so pretty!

You can start to see how the cord storage starts to fit into the grand scheme of things.

Nice and level, all the way across. And attached directly to the wall with pocket screws, with notches for the side drawer sets.

Small 2" grommets were inserted to pass cords from below the desk up to the main part. A cord hole was also cut into the wall, with another one about 2' higher, right where the back of my monitor sits. (Before you ask, yes, I really, really dislike cords. *Unless its a mouse cord... Still don't trust cordless gaming mice!)

Completed, and ready for the table top! After the table top was installed, we put a piece to sit flush with the front of the cord channel.

Screwing the drawers upward into the table top. The center table legs were also installed. (prior to the countertop being set into place)

After the table was installed, the front of the cord channel was pushed into place and screwed from the bottom. You can also see here that the table actually consists of two IKEA tabletops merged together at the center with brackets and screws. (They didn't have an 11' section, so I made due with two 6' sections trimmed down at the ends that meet the wall)

Lights on, and mostly all cleaned up!

The desk is floating on the side drawer sets, and the center legs. To add stability, some L brackets were attached to the wall. This thing is now solid, it doesn't move one bit!

A closeup view of the cord channel. One single power cord comes up from an outlet in the center, and splits into several smaller power bars that are attached to the channel. It is very easy to lean over and plug things into the bars, all while hiding them from normal view.

Holdup... The lights change color? (Oh yes, they do! And its amazing!)

After measuring where the monitor would be, I cut the top hole and pulled the cables through.

Final Assembly and Pieces.

Found this beautiful chair at IKEA and knew it would fit perfectly.

Assembled the side shelf and the rolling set of drawers underneath the middle.

Started moving things in. Mostly things with cords that I would need to thread through and hide. I also like 3D printing, and moving the printer on the table was nice. Adds some visual interest for now.

Moved the sofa in. Things are starting to take shape! Still have some artifact shelves on the wall that I need to get rid of and replace with artwork.

It's like this corner was made for the drumset. I attached the pedals to the floor with velcro self-stick pads. (like the kind you can hand pictures with, but stronger, as to both protect the floor from the pedals moving around, and also to allow them to stick in one place, yet be removable if needed.)

Decoration

Next Morning! Pulled down the floating shelves from before and replaced them with artwork from my favorite games (Zelda, Breath of the Wild, and Bioshock) and also some cool IKEA canvas pieces that I found in the 50% off, discontinued section. (score!)

I framed the Zelda BOTW map myself. It came with a book and was folded, so I needed to iron the folds out of the canvas in order to frame it myself.

Everything all cleaned up. Looking great!

So Clean! This turned our exactly how I had imagined it! (the art was a surprise, but a welcome one at that!)

The pedals set in their places.

Warm light. The photos don't do these justice! In real life the gradient of light is super smooth.

Purple lighting. I really dig these lights. A strip behind the table, three floods in the ceiling, and another lamp on each side of the couch.

Originally I was going to buy some small tables for the lights on either side of the couch, but... Frankly the floor placement has grown a bit on me.

I did the entire project while my wife and kids were out of town for 5 days, and they were pretty surprised when they came back!

Finished Room
Conclusion;
This was a very fun project, and one that I was able to conceptualize with 3D, get a checklist of materials and sizes from there, and then pull together in a matter of days. I worked 3 full days on this, not to mention other 2 other nights after work.
I own an Oculus Rift S (VR Headset) and the carpet in the center is the perfect size for people to play in. The room was built with several zones in mind;
- Computer Usage (most of my time in here)
- Drumming and Music
- VR usage for myself and guests
- A secondary workstation for Scrap Booking, Painting, or a friend to come over and game.
- Seating for multiple people to watch VR and be involved in the area.

My takeaway is that the skill in 3D that I had with Blender 3D allowed me to experiment with a bunch of different setups until I had one I liked and could show to others. That feedback look helped me better understand how to do everything, and several ideas, including the cord channel, and the table-wall spacing came directly from showing others and talking with them.
It also came from being aware of things that I didn't want to buy new, or at full price. The canvases on the wall were in the As-Is section of IKEA (open box). The black futon was for sale at basically half off the Walmart price on the Provo yard sale site. The carpet was on sale on amazon, the wood floors were 30% off at Sam's Club, and the rest were all new, and necessary for the project.
Having used this room for about a week now, I can say that I absolutely LOVE it. The lights, the sitting area, and the defined spaces for different jobs/activities.
Thanks for Reading!
- Hunter Paramore
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