Home Office (or, better yet, “man cave”) Project

For while I wanted a home office that suited my needs. I collect some old (and heavy) computers and a big and solid bench was a major requirement. I also needed a space to work (of course) and a space to play with my music (a big hobby of mine).

Being a “do-it-yourself’er”, I decided to set a budget, design and build the whole thing myself. I thought it would become a fun side project – and it sure did!

To get things right, it was mandatory to get all measurements and use some sort of 3D tool to design everything. I had never used 3D design tools before, so I went on to Google for some tips. In the end, I decided to give SketchUp a shot. Watched some YouTube videos to learn how to use the tool, and on I went. The first thing was to create the massive L shaped desk. The desk measured 2.5 m x 2 m with a 85 cm depth. Plan was to use kitchen worktops made from solid wood, 5 cm thick. So, the base needed to be VERY strong. Another requirement I set was to have enough free room for my legs all around the table (specially in the corner). So, I decided to use industrial strength galvanised pipes for that. It would also be easier to put together and to order the parts exactly as I wanted them. After several trial and errors, the desk 3D project looked pretty much the way I wanted:

Next, I added the shelves and drawer units (all from IKEA, which made me stick to the defined budget). This is the top view:

And a different angle view:

How I planned to lay everything out in the available space:

When the parts started to arrive, I realized that putting everything together without any help would be very tricky. I should have lost about 6 pounds with the workout 🙂

How nice it is to see things going exactly as planned!

Finally, after 3 weekends of very hard work, the project was concluded with great success. So, I present here the end result, comparing the projected and the actual result:

And the cables… well… they are all tucked in under the desk:

I have to say I am proud of myself for being able to pull this off… I am a tech guy, afterwards! Not a builder or an interior designer! And, from what I quoted, doing the project myself costed less than half than if I had hired a contractor / interior designer. And, well, I really loved the result!

Case anyone is interested, here are the suppliers for everything I used:

  • Worktops for the desk: worktop-express.co.uk
  • Desk base (galvanised pipes): simplifiedbuilding.co.uk
  • Shelf units and drawers: IKEA
  • 3D software: www.sketchup.com (30 days free trial)