How to Create a Home Office Area within Another Room

Friday, March 1, 2013
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At the end of last year, my husband and I created a home office space at one end of our living room that could house both our desks, while keeping them both almost completely out of sight.  It has worked out so well that I thought I would share about how easy and fairly inexpensive it was to do.  There was also a huge added bonus from making this easy change.  We added tons of storage to our living room for Blu-rays and DVDs, video games, books, the children's electronic games, their coloring books, and many other things we wanted to keep handy, but not in plain view.

The only things we needed to accomplish this change were 3 inexpensive bookcases.  I found these Ameriwood 3-Shelf Bookcases at Walmart for about $20 each.  They happened to be the exact width we needed when lined up side-by-side to make a wall in front of our desks.  If you can believe it, the bookcases were not the largest expense.  The Set of 6 Beige Winsome Capri Foldable Fabric Baskets sell for about $30 per set.  We bought 3 sets for slightly less because we had found them on sale on  They just happened to be the perfect size we needed, both in width and height, to fill each shelf with two across.  I also found them in Black on, but we ended up deciding that the Beige would help to brighten up the room.

Since it was impossible for me to take an aerial photo of our home office area, I created the diagram below for your reference instead . . .

As you can see, it was extremely easy to do and would be for anyone who has a long room, whether it is your living room, family room, or bedroom.  Our newly created office space takes up about 1/3 of our living room.

Of course you need to adapt this idea to your own space.  If you only have one desk to house, then you might not need 3 bookcases across the front.  The important thing is to measure exactly how long you need the wall to be and then find the bookcases that meet your needs both in height and width.  We also added a small bookcase that we already owned onto the side of my husband's desk to hide his desk from view for anyone walking in from the kitchen.  You can definitely keep the cost down by using what you have already to supplement the new bookcases and bins.

If you try this idea in your home, I would love to hear how it turns out.

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Published by Karen Coutu
  1. This is an interesting way to divide up the room. Great idea for when you are short on space.

    Posted on March 2, 2013 at 12:44 PM

  2. My desk sits in my living room right now and I've been trying to figure out how I could keep it out of sight. This gives me an idea. Thanks for sharing.

    Posted on March 2, 2013 at 9:44 PM

  3. Karen Coutu Said,

    Great Dee! Let me know how it goes. :D

    Posted on March 2, 2013 at 9:56 PM

  4. I sort of do this in our living room behind our sectional sofa with my desk, a small table, my treadmill and my exercise bike. The problem I have is that it is not hidden. I wish I had the room for the bookcases like you did them.

    Posted on March 3, 2013 at 8:28 AM

  5. Karen Coutu Said,

    @Kim: Well, in order to do this, we had to sacrifice seating in our living room. We just have an armless sofa and a small chair plus the TV in the rest of the living room. It's just enough room for us to sit, but not so great if you have company over. :)

    Posted on March 3, 2013 at 10:17 AM


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