Ten Foot Office or Craft Room Desk Tutorial

My craft room has always been the hardest room in the house to keep organized.  It seems like every time anyone steps foot in the place it needs to be tidied for an hour afterwards.

Organization has never been my strong suit.  My go-to method to keep things tidy usually ends in a trip to the local thrift shop.  In other words, the only way for me to keep it organized is to not own it all.

My younger sisters, on the other hand, are meticulously clean and organized.  They have actually all been over to my house at some point throughout the years to help rescue me from my disheveled mess.

This time my youngest sister came to my aid.  

It started when I was working in her orderly craft room. Every single thing had a place and I always knew where to find the right colored thread, seam ripper and stabilizer.  I noticed how quickly I could get the job done because I wasn't wasting time searching for the scissors for the fifth time in one day.

Here is a before shot of my craft room.  Machines are scattered about on two different desks on each side of the room, the shelves are bursting at the seams with craft supplies and there is nowhere to hide piles of fabric and inventory.

I get stressed just looking at it.  Productivity is very difficult in a space like that.

The first thing needed for project "Craft Room Reorganization" was a long desk that could accommodate all my machines, computer and printer.

I also wanted to add as much storage as possible, because getting rid of everything isn't conducive to running a crafting business.  There is always going to be inventory, fabric, thread, tools, packaging, etc. etc.

We started by removing the bookshelves and desks.  

I found three brand new, still in the packaging, white cabinets for $200 on Craigslist.

I placed them along the wall where I wanted the desk.

In this room we have something on every wall to keep us from putting in a wall to wall desk, unfortunately.  This wall was the best choice, as we only had the door to contend with.

At first I had them spaced evenly so there would be two different openings, but there just wasn't enough room for the spaces to be wide enough.  My sister suggested putting two of the cabinets together, so that's just what we did.

The next step was to work on the desktop.  I make it sound like this all happened on the same day, but the truth is it sat topless for at least a week.

We bought five 2X6 pine boards and cut them down to the length we needed, which for this room was 116 inches.

We also cut a piece of plywood to 24X113". This piece was just for the 2X6's to be screwed into and needed to be just wide and long enough to sit on top of the cabinets.  When I say we, I really mean just mean my husband.  I watched and took pictures.

We set the boards out on the floor to see what order we wanted them in.  I wanted the straightest boards in the front, so the place where my sewing machines sit would be the most level.

He sanded the boards until they were smooth.

Next, my husband stained the boards with Minwax's Weathered Oak, the same stain we used for our Farmhouse Table.  We actually had enough leftover to not even need to buy more.

He then added two coats of Polycrylic. 

Next, we brought all the boards and plywood upstairs to our craft room.  There was  no way the top was going to fit up there after being built, so we had to actually build it in the room.

First we made sure we had a good fit with the plywood.

Then, we laid the boards out in order, but upside down.  We clamped them together on both ends and in the middle.

This picture was taken before we added the third clamp.  We were going to try to get by without it, but we just couldn't get it level enough.  

Next we measured and marked where we wanted the plywood to be.  We wanted more overhang in the front. so we glued the plywood down closer to the back than the front.

We added the glue and then laid the plywood down.

Next, my husband screwed in a half pound of drywall screws.

Finally, we heaved the heavy countertop onto the cabinets.

I still need to add a piece of trim to hide the plywood and all the spots where there is a gap, because the room isn't level.  I guess that's the character people are referring to in old houses, the "character" that shows up and makes sure no project is ever easy because nothing is ever square.  I digress.

And here is how it looks with all my stuff.

The lineup:

serger, Brother sewing machine, computer, printer, Brother embroidery machine

I brought the ladder from the kitchen up, since I still haven't found the right chair for it.  It needs to be bar stool height, yet comfortable.  I'm open for suggestions.

I also haven't decided on what I am going to do with the rest of the room.  I'm thinking I am going to give it a couple coats of Benjamin Moore Owl Gray and maybe a few shelves.  I am also looking for an antique cabinet to hold the rest of my stuff.

I will keep you posted as the rest of the project comes along!