Guest Post - How I Maximized Utility, Style and Space in My Midtown Studio

Today's post is a guest post from Mariana, who lives in a studio condo in midtown Atlanta. Learn how she customized her furniture to maximize her usable space, while also maintaining her own style...

Time to Upgrade

I had been living in my midtown studio, nicknamed my glorified dorm room, for the last 4 years. And one day I was sitting at my IKEA desk and desk chair, visible from all angles of the condo, realizing it was time —time to purge all of the remaining crappy furniture from my youth. You know the ones, shelves and desks from Target or IKEA, put together by hand with the weird little L-shaped wrench. I was so accustomed to seeing them that I didn’t even notice how they cheapened the look of my living space.

So I decided to graduate myself to something that I could be proud of due to the fact that everything in my small condo is visible 24/7. You see, I’m your typical technology worker with work-from-home flexibility. Spending that much time at home means I need to keep the place pretty neat and organized. One or two things out of place can mean the entire condo looks like a tornado blew through.

To kill several birds with one stone, I’d need to get some great new pieces, like a desk and some storage shelves, that would be stylish and help me keep my stuff organized, while also having some additional functionalities to facilitate my work-from-home life and my desire to host more get togethers. After online desk shopping at the typical higher-end stores, I couldn’t find the one that would meet all my needs: a spacious stand-up desk, with wheels, drawers, and compartments to hide all the messy computer and monitor wires, that could on special occasion, easily convert into a rolling bar or dining space.

Customization on a Budget

That’s when I talked to Derik. At first I thought, there’s no way getting a custom made desk would be affordable, especially with all of my requirements. However, we talked about what I needed, took measurements, and talked about the look and feel. I was surprised at how many options there were with wood variety, colors, etc. He showed me some pieces he’d made, and I fell in love with the two-tone wood combinations and high contrast grains. He also suggested that I could make the desk as high as my kitchen table so that it could function as additional table seating, a floating bar, or whatever I wanted (good idea)!

And the best part — the price wasn’t astronomical like I thought it would be. I selected zebra wood and tiger maple, to get an interesting contrast. The desk that he designed for me was exactly the height, size, style, and everything I wanted for the same that I would pay for an out-of-the-box desk that didn’t meet most of my requirements and that I would have to assemble myself. This was a no brainer.

So Derik made the desk for me and it was the best decision! Once I had my first party, the complements came pouring in, and not to mention I love working at the desk. I finally have drawers (zebra wood nonetheless) to stow my laptops, notebooks, and random papers, when not in use, and no more messy wires. The best part is that I can wheel the desk around my place so easily, and work from any corner I like, and it’s fun to look at.

Standing Desk - Ambrosia maple and zebra wood

 Standing Desk - Cable management

Standing Desk - Cable management

Other Areas I Customized

Because I loved the desk so much, we proceeded with some other pieces to match; kitchen shelves (made of exotic purple heart wood) to give me more area to display artwork and plants, a large mirror with zebra wood frame which brightens up my door and hallway entrance (making my place feel much bigger), and a floating bathroom cabinet with zebra wood doors to match my desk. Everything was built custom to my taste and preferences. Now my place feels so much bigger and better with all the style and utility, and I can keep my stuff much more organized. Having custom-made furniture really changed the way I see my place, and I have to say it’s been so worth it.

 Bathroom Cabinet - Ambrosia maple and zebra wood

Bathroom Cabinet - Ambrosia maple and zebra wood

 Floating Shelves

Floating Shelves

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