SARAH DUKE | JOURNAL
published fine art photographer in virginia

Light & Airy Office Interior Design Makeover | Natural Light & Netrauls | Creative Space to Create | Sarah Duke Photography

August 8, 2018

I love natural light & home design. From neutrals, rooms & paints..to soft lights, candles, lace curtains and white. Bright, warm, white. Starting a home project is a reminder to me that I need teamwork! I can always "dream it" on my own....but can't always "do it" alone! Have you been there?


I started dreaming about wainscoting my office walls first. Prior to the completion of my office this room in our home wasn't being utilized to it's full capacity by any means. Here is a before picture - empty & plain. The walls were a light blue color (which wasn't bad) but he trim is what I would call, "Nicotine Yellow"

S T E P O N E : C O L O R S

The Project began first by selecting colors. The wainscoting trim was a no brainer - bright white. And for the top color, Granite Dust by Valspar. The painting began! What good is a photography office without a photo-collage? I found the easiest gallery on Amazon - it came with a guide so you knew exactly where to put the screws.

S T E P T W O : W A I N S C O T T I N G

The part I was most excited for! After the wainscoting was completed I moved everything back in my office - fixed my desk - knickknacks and all....only to discover hidden treasure was awaiting under the carpet....Beautiful wood floors!

S T E P T H R E E : M A X I M I Z E S I T T I N G S P A C E

Despite what some people may think, my husband and I have found our forever home, all 1,288 sqft of it! With this in mind, I have creatively challenged my planning for home improvement to maximize the space we have without making it feel crammed. (As a side note: see my post about this "small houses" poem here).


No doubt, I needed to create more sitting space without bringing in bulky furniture. I thought to myself, ...This closet is such a waste of space. What in the world can I do to maximize the space in this room??"


I came across a "reading nook" idea on Pinterest and first thought yeahhhh right. There is NO WAY my husband will let me completely gut EVERYTHING out of this closet. Not to mention....a FACTORY installed closet from the previous owner. But, I knew I definitely needed more seating. With careful planning and a little convincing - the gutting began! And it's a great thing because that's how we discovered hidden treasure under that carpet!!

S T E P F O U R : U P C Y C L E

1. Painted stripes add dimension and class. White stripes - "Bright White by Valspar" Grey stripes - "Silverdrop by Behr"

2. Recycling an old headboard. Painted with "Luxury Linen by Valspar."

3. Using a staple gun & twin mattress memory foam to cover & tuft the bench, and costume jewelry pearls from AC Moore instead of buttons for accent.

4. Using seemingly useless Styrofoam junk to create a matching, beautiful and functioning ottoman? Yes! it's possible! I used the styrofoam packaging that the chandelier was delivered in! On top, placing a piece of plywood so you can sit, stand and use it like any other ottoman...for a fraction of the cost....yes people.....STYROFOM.

5. And in the winter? This is the toastiest, coziest room in the house thanks to the electric fireplace

The Silk flower arrangement is from my wedding - At this point you should know, I do love gardening...but when it comes to weddings...I always encourage silk flowers...why? You have momentums forever!

Like I said, its home projects that remind me I need teamwork, other creative minds and a whole lot of LOVE to get it done. I am thankful especially for my mother in law with her brilliant ideas and ingenuity!

Copyright © 2015- 2020 Sarah Duke Photography

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