I’m building another desk! Now typically I would just do the project and share the end result with you, but I thought I’d mix it up a bit this time. A lot of work and time goes into a project like this, so I thought I’d turn it into a behind the scenes quick series! Over the next few weeks I’m going to show you how the new desk came together, starting with a little back story for why I’m building a new desk instead of just keeping the one I previously DIY’ed. Let’s jump right into it!
Here’s part 1 of my Ikea Desk Hack journey:
Why The Change in Desk?
I’m sure most of you remember our previous desk step up (DIY mounted wall desk; pictured above) since it was a project that I shared here. It was such a great desk and worked well for our previous apartment, especially when Ryan was working from home during the first half of the pandemic. I really did love it and was proud that I was able to install this desk in two apartments.
When we moved into our new apartment last summer, I decided not to bring it with us for a few different reasons:
1. The home we live in now was built in 1846, so drilling into the plaster walls is a little more involved and not something that I love doing. It actually make me anxious, so I try to avoid making holes as much as I can.
2. The other reason is now that we have a designated office space, I can have a desk of my own. Something that’s completely my style and made for my needs. Aka…. something colorful!
I searched around for a new desk for a bit thinking that I would just buy when we moved. I even rounded up a few of my colorful favorites, and almost pulled the trigger on one of them. But after all that, I decided that I wanted something custom to the space to optimize the room we have. So I’m going to DIY another desk!
A Look at the New Space
This project actually started summer 2021 when we moved in to our new place. I know a lot of the internet makes it feel like you need to do everything all at once, but it’s okay to take your time to build exactly what you want. Here’s a look at the space with items that we had when we moved in (aka when it was a dumpster fire). Nothing about this worked. The bookcase towered over the space, the room felt uncomfortable to be in, and I barely had enough space on my desk for a coffee cup. So then as everyone does when they move in, it was time to go to Ikea.
What I Bought
The measurements of the office are a bit unique; the desk needed to be long enough for the entire wall, but not be so deep that it came out further than the window frame. I also needed the base units to be at the right height for sitting at a desk. I’m pretty sure I cross checked measurements on Ikea pieces for a few weeks straight until I found something that would hit all of these needs.
Instead of separating the storage from the desk area (i.e. a bookcase + separate desk), I decided that I would combine them as one long unit. After searching, measuring, and waiting on inventory to finally get restocked, I settled on the Besta Unit from Ikea!
I ended up getting two pieces to put together, but you’ll see more about this in future blog posts. I also picked up the NANNARP legs to make the unit the right size for a desk. In addition to the desk bottom, I needed to get a piece to go across the top to create a workspace. Thankfully Ikea and Home Depot are right next to each other.
The price of lumber is no where near affordable right now, but it was still the cheapest way to get a custom size desk top. Trust me, I looked around on this one for a WHILE. Wood definitely wasn’t my first choice, but it was the most flexible material, so I went with it. They were kind enough to cut it directly to size for me at the store so that the only work left for me was to sand and paint.
Anddddd that’s the desk so far! Come back next week to see what color I chose to paint it + learn how to paint Ikea furniture!