What does a Garden Gnome do when she is not gardening, in the kitchen or doing genealogy? Well the answer might just surprise you so read the entries to find out more. This blog focuses on everything we do to make our house a home. There will be a strong emphasis on home energy efficiency and do-it-yourself (DIY) projects. At the same time there will also be crafts, knitting and crocheting projects along with any other little tips we do to create that down to earth, I want to be here home. Please enjoy your visit :)


Monday, June 21, 2010

Vacation Home Office

vacation home office desk and chair
Desk & Chair
May 22, 2010

Most people don't think of setting up a small office in their vacation homes but in our case it is a necessity.  We will be using the laptop and iPod Touch for communicating while away and while a week of having computer equipment set up in a kitchen or bedroom may be fine while on vacation, longer term vacations require a bit more suitable arrangements.  In addition to our needs we are trying to consider the needs of our guests (family, friends) and tenants.  Our vacation home will likely be rented out for the months of January through March so a lot of tenants would appreciate having a separate office space available for that 3 month period. 

The room being used as the office is about 9' x 9' with double French doors cutting off the front corner making the room square footage smaller than it would be if square.  It is intended as a den or office but can easily be used as a third bedroom.  We bought knockdown furniture for the office.  Knockdown furniture is furniture you assemble yourself.  It is available from stores like Big Lots and Wal-mart as well as the more famous IKEA.  The brand to look for in the box stores is Saunder (I'm not affiliated with Saunder just a happy customer.)  This company offers a wide range of knockdown furniture from desks to shelf units, dressers, tv stands and more.  As far as quality goes in knockdown furniture, IKEA (no affiliation just a happy customer) is the best as many of their pieces are solid wood.  We honestly have a coffee table and end table bought in 1980 from IKEA that still look great even after having been refinished a few times as they took up temporary residence at the kids apartments during their university years.  What is really nice is we were still able to buy a table that matched these two pieces as they still carry the line in the stores.  Next in quality is Saunder followed by most of the other brands of knockdown furniture.  We have a Saunder 6' wide tv unit stand bought in 1994 that still looks good after a couple of moves.  So knockdown furniture can be just as durable as as good looking as furniture bought elsewhere.

We chose a Saunder knockdown computer desk ($69.84) for the office along with a knockdown computer chair.  The desk presented a bit of assembly problems but that is to be expected with all knockdown furniture especially if you don't interpret the instructions clearly.  Once assembled the desk was quite sturdy.  The instructions called for gluing as well as using joiners.  The back of the short end is not finished but the long end is giving a couple of possible orientations in the room.  The chair ($49.99) assembly including attaching the arms and the swivel base.  The total cost for both pieces came in at $128.22 including taxes.  It was a low cost way to start furnishing the vacation house home office.  We hauled out an exercise glider that had been left behind in the garage so the office looks somewhat like an office.  We intend to buy a day bed for extra sleeping capacity for that room as well.

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