With the majority of our frames (because yes, there’s more that didn’t make it to the wall!) up off the floor and our fauxdenza being done, there’s been an onslaught of open spaces in this home. There’s less tripping down the hall, cleaner counter tops and an overall feeling of satisfaction.
We used the same Ikea Akurum cabinets and Applad doors (the ladies are smarties, I tell you; who thinks of this?) to create a task station of sorts. While I don’t plan on working from this desk (it’s very shallow at just 13 inches deep), I did want to utilize it as a place to perch temporarily, even if just to check a few emails. The majority of my time will be spent at the painting table, which will eventually find it’s way into the room after a new paint job (ironic, if you think about it).
The cabinets we chose are meant to be used as upper kitchen cabinetry, so they’re installed using Ikea’s suspension rail system. Because of this, we hung them at at 36 inch counter height, which allowed them to float 5 inches off the floor and give a feeling of weightlessness. Always something we like in small quarters.
We first mentioned the fauxdenza right here, and we admitted the pains of finding a properly sized plank of wood at the needed 13 inch depth. (On a side note, a top is necessary since the finished cabinets have exposed screw heads; after all, they’re never meant to be seen in their actual setting.) After searching high and low, we found a beautiful piece of white oak from Wood World, cut it to our proper dimensions and finished it up with a nice, dark stain (we used Minwax Jacobean, but see our complete three step conditioner, stain and poly system here).
We used mitered edges (although if you’re looking to save some trouble, Morgan used straight, flush cuts, and it’s still beautiful) and settled on a length of 89 inches in total. This left a 35 inch middle gap for stools and barely 3 inches of space to the door. But because it’s such a shallow depth, there’s no awkwardness or hip bumping when you walk into the room – a very good thing for a counter-height-hipped girl like myself.
To save money, only the exposed side of our task station has an appropriately sized slab of the oak. We needed to shave off about 3 inches of depth from the original purchased piece (we picked up a 16 inch deep plank), and we used that extra depth to create a faux-side on the end that meets the wall. Here’s the exposed side, but no one will ever know the opposite end is a partial piece:
Keeping in mind that this’ll likely be a landing pad for my laptop, we drilled into the top for access to the electrical outlet below. We’ve also been toying with the idea of using my pretty pendant as a hanging desk lamp, in which case, that cord will need to have a place to go, too.
As for how it all stays in place, we carefully drilled pilot holes from the inside of the cabinets to attach the top and sides. To make sure we don’t accidentally get drill happy and poke through the other side (ugh, the horror that would have caused!), Scott marked his drill with blue tape to signal where to stop.
For center support and added security, we added two L brackets. And to show off how tough this guy is, we snapped this photo for Facebook and learned a little something about “owling” in the process. (Have you heard of this? We’re so behind.)
Aside from a few shipping items (put away after this was shot), the concealed storage is still mostly empty. Much to Scott’s dismay, I’m having a bit of stage fright on where things will go; I’m getting caught up on the perfectness of it all (this, of course, after I boast the joys of imperfectionism in gallery walls).
There are so many ways to customize the end layout you’re looking for, and our best advice would be (if possible) to go to Ikea and see the options available. In all honesty, we went with one idea in mind and left with another. (But isn’t that always the case with that place?) We actually have 3 cabinets – 1 on the left and 2 on the right, one on top of the other. The total for the 3 and all the components (rails, drawer silencers and the luxury of carrying home our weight in boxes) came in under $250, and although that doesn’t exactly make my thrifty heart sing, it did afford us an 8 foot desk. A sturdy, floating, custom fit counter height desk.
As mentioned before, we’re planning a wall of exposed shelving to go above this desk/task station/fauxdenza, so more and more (and more!) storage is to come. But, uh, we have to build it. Again, (say it with me?) one step at a time.
Even still, we’ve had some fun crossing off the ol’ to do over the last couple of weeks:
Prime the walls, trim and doors
Paint the walls, trim and doors
• Install crown molding and chair rail
• Paint the painting table for the new room (yes, really)
Sell and/or donate the unnecessary furniture
• Design, build and install a storage wall (similar to our media wall)
Decide on artwork for the room
Clean, paint and prep thrifty frames
Frame, mat and hang inspirational artwork (using this technique)
Decide on lighting
• Decide on textiles: rug, curtains and upholstery for seating (halfway there)
• Buy the decided upon things. Budget. Install them. (halfway there)
Re-stock painting, shipping and packaging supplies
• Pull it together like we own it
• Return to normalcy (we can only hope)
So, have we sold you on the fauxdenza yet? Who’s with us?
See more of our studio ideas on our Pinterest board, right here.