The Brunette One founder and designer, Samantha McClelland, teaches us how to turn a boring beige space into the office of our dreams. Tips and tutorials from the creative #girlboss herself are below!
Whether you work from home or are looking to carve out a space to call your own, affordable DIY projects can help make a cookie-cutter office—or even just an empty wall—your very own without costing a fortune.
Six months ago, our offices went under renovation and we were allowed to work remotely. This allowed for the perfect opportunity to turn my builder-grade office into a space I could truly call my own. I had all the makings of an office—a pink couch, a sit-to-stand desk, chair, shelf—but simply had no direction. A little elbow grease and determination turned my once-taupe spare bedroom into a true #girlboss office space!
So, where does one begin when you have to work around a bright pink loveseat? Paint and wallpaper, of course! I painted all of the trim and doors in the space an off-the-shelf bright white. I left the back wall untouched and installed a floral mural.
Once I decided wallpaper was the solution to my statement wall, I began researching different companies to see what would be the most affordable option. Instead of investing in permanent wallpaper, I selected a removable option in case I ever outgrow my decision. Walls Need Love had hundreds of options to choose from, but I knew I wanted to select a mural that made my pink loveseat pop!
DIY Wallpapered Featured Wall
- Removable wallpaper
- Damp cloth
- Craft knife
- Measuring tape
- Prep your walls.
- Use a damp cloth to clean your walls, let dry completely.
- Unroll and cut each panel (Walls Need Love separates each panel with a solid white section, each panel is numbered).
- Find and mark the center of the wall.
- Peel back about 24-inches of backing paper and trim it.
- Align the right side of the panel to the center line (the panels are marked according to placement on the wall).
- Stick the panel and smooth it from the center outward.
- Repeat the previous step for all panels.
- Trim the top and bottom of the panels with a craft knife (ceiling and trim).
- To ensure the panels don’t start to lift, you may need to secure the corners with a small nail or double-edge tape.
The IKEA shelf was an original DIY from our old house. I spray painted it rose gold a few years ago, but once I knew I was going with a black-and-white theme in my office, back to black it went! The shelf needed to remain a place to hold picture frames and collectables, but needed to be functional as well. It would eventually hold files, a printer and items I use daily. I was looking to add some height to the shelf and came across the perfection solution: vases! One of my easiest DIY projects for the room came from a trip to my local Goodwill and a bottle of spray paint.
- Matte Black Spray Paint
- Collect various vases in different sizes and shapes—colors do not matter.
- In a well-ventilated area, spray black spray paint 10 to 12 inches away from vase.
- Allow first coat to dry before spraying a second coat.
- Allow vases to dry. Arrange on your shelf and be sure to document your next #shelfie!
After investing in two gold side tables from Target a few years ago for my wedding, they had started to collect dust in our current home. I decided to give one of them a makeover for my new home office. All it took was a little stain and spray paint. To get the same look, try the steps below!
DIY Rustic Side Table
- Wood Round from local hardware store
- Metal Side Table
- Command Strips
- Minwax Wood Stain (in Pecan)
- Polycrylic Protective Finish
- Spray paint table base, let dry.
- Apply second coat of spray paint.
- Apply stain in direction of the grain with a brush or clean cloth.
- Allow stain to penetrate 5 to 10 minutes to achieve desired color (the longer the color sits, the darker the color will be).
- Remove stain that has not been absorbed with a clean cloth. Wipe in direction of the grain to unify color.
- Spray or brush on polycrylic finish as a protective coat.
- Adhere wooden table round to the surface of the side table with command strips.
Thanks to these affordable DIY projects, I was able to stay within budget and create an open, airy and inspiring space to work—and so can you!
Walls Need Love Clara Mural // Herman Miller Sit-to-Stand Desk (similar) // Plastic Molded Side Chair (similar budget-friendly version) // CB2 Vase // Target Wicker Baskets // Target Tufted Chaise // Vintage Coffee Table (similar) // Parsons Desk (West Elm Version) // Vintage Ghost Chair (similar) // Similar Lamps