Thursday, October 21, 2010

The Miracle Desk

With the advent of a new school-year, I must confess that I've had to ward off homeschool-room envy. I recently told friends that I don't envy people's big, fancy houses; I envy people's school rooms.

Our kitchen table has worked mostly fine until this year, but with Blondie's increased work load, I begrudgingly shuffled books and papers and crayons from the table to the counter multiple times a day. We had to clear the school junk away so that we could eat breakfast, lunch, and sometimes dinner at this all-purpose table.

And if we didn't? Someone invariably spilled juice or smeared peanut butter onto somebody's math book and I would get mad because they were mad and papers were wet and I blamed all the world's problems on my lack of a homeschool room. Because I'm so rational and all.

And while I knew that I could make do just fine without an actual room devoted solely to education, I still needed a solution to the constant shuffling of papers and high-stakes juice spillage.

I literally lost sleep rearranging my entire house in my head night after night searching for a solution. And then, it hit me.

Take this seagrass settee...

And turn it into a window seat on one side of the kitchen table.

Use the empty space left by the moved settee for a long, narrow school desk and book storage.

So that's what I did.

You know how sometimes you really want something and you think it's going to change your life and make it so much better but then it doesn't turn out to be the miracle you though it would be?

This is not one of those times.

I spent about $100 and saved a whole lot of sanity. Also? I have always wanted a window seat for that big bay window. Turns out I had one all along. It was just sitting on the other side of the room holding piles of unfolded laundry.

I can't believe how simple this was and how well it's working for our family. Thanks for letting me show and tell.


And thank you IKEA for the affordable desk solution.

{I used 2 Vika Annefors cubbies, 2 Vika table tops, and 4 Vika Curry legs. Instead of using one long Vika tabletop at $40 that would have required just one leg, Lily advised me to purchase 2 smaller Vika tabletops at just $5.99 each and 4 legs at $3.50 each. I saved a little money that way but more importantly, I actually have 2 separate desks if I ever choose to move these elsewhere.}


  1. Looks great Marian. I would love for you to come to our house and help make the best of the small spaces. Love your creativity! ;)

  2. It looks so amazing Marian! I am so happy the desk idea worked!! YAY! The settee looks even better than I imagined. I love how it looks so cozy there now. I want to pop in for a coffee, but my feet up and stay a while. Can I soon?

  3. Great idea. I always dreamed about a school room, too. But in our 11 years of home education, we've survived somehow without one. Wish I had thought of something like this.
    That friend of yours, Lily, is very smart -- two desks will be more versatile in the long run.
    Hugs all around.

  4. I am just so thrilled at the difference this is making in your daily home life (and homeschool life)! It looks fantastic (yes, in person, too) and you truly have functionality. No more lying awake at night looking for a solution to this. You accomplished it . . . with creativity, patience, and a great tip from your great friend.


  5. Looks great! I tell myself that a school room would just be yet another room that needs to be cleaned. Bah, who needs that? ;)

  6. What a great solution-and the settee looks awesome by the window!

  7. What a wonderful hs area! I have to say we are lucky enough to have a dedicated school room (I use half of the guest room), but your solution is wonderful. Our school furniture is IKEA too. Got to love IKEA! You can see photos of it here:
    BTW, I have all those same Paris photos/prints. I love how you displayed yours.

  8. oh I love that!!! did you travel or order by mail? i need those now!

  9. I hear you, sweetie. I only homeschooled for three years, but those three years were spent at the dining table, and there were times I thought I'd lose my mind.

    But you didn't lose your mind! You kept your wits about you quite well, I'd say! I'm so glad your solution is working well for your family. It looks smashing! Thank you for showing and telling!

  10. It looks great! I feel your pain and your homeschool-room envy. LOL. We're at the dining room table, where we eat all our meals as well. It's not going to change any time soon. But we're making it work for now. :)

    Your desk looks awesome. :)

  11. love that function!!! how fun when the puzzle pieces can fit better someplace else! thanks for sharing

  12. Bounced over from Chatting at the Sky. Like your space here and love, love IKEA! Ugh, if you could see the space I'm working from now...thanks for a little inspiration!


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