9 Craft Room Makeover Ideas
The work space/craft room of Pennsylvania newlywed Jess Mauras (shown here with husband Joe) was a pile of stress and ribbons, devoid of inspiration—and, for that matter, shelving. Real Simple transformed it into three tidy zones that foster calm and creativity.
A Dedicated Desk (With a View): Before
A Dedicated Desk (With a View): After
A dreamlike “abstract landscape” makes sitting down to work energizing. The fabric board is perfect for posting sketches and to-dos and is easy to make. (Buy a piece of Homasote at a hardware store; stretch fabric around it, making hospital corners; and staple in back.)
Cute and Contained Desk
A scaled-down model with deep drawers does everything Jess needs without taking up a lot of floor space. The striking chair to the left relates to the color scheme of the board while adding a complementary pattern. It’s a nice spot for visitors (or Aubrey, the family cat).
Small and Large Files
Giving every paper and accessory a home keeps the focus on work (no more wasted time scrounging around for a paper clip). A six-door desktop organizer ensures push-pins and the like stay visible but corralled. The bottom cabinet allows Jess to categorize paid bills, receipts, and household papers.
To buy: Bedford small desk, $468, potterybarn.com. Logan Pharmacy table lamp, $210, circalighting.com. Modular flip-out bins (white), $14, containerstore.com. Drafting chair, $288, schoolhouseelectric.com. Fabric for bulletin board: Edo Linen by Groundworks Kelly Wearstler Collection, $196 a yard, leejofa.com for info. Reupholstered midcentury vintage chair, $650, chairloom.com for similar styles. Fabric for chair: China Seas Aga Reverse New Navy, $200 a yard, Design Professionals, 212-759-5408 (ext. 204).
A Sewing Zone With Not a Stitch of Wasted Space: Before
A Sewing Zone With Not a Stitch of Wasted Space: After
A clear acrylic Peg-Board keeps supplies handy and surfaces clear while fading into the background. The long, narrow worktable is spacious without being bulky; a stool slips underneath it when not in use. The accordion-style lamp sheds light on sewing work, then retracts.
Pretty, Practical Shelving
Journals, albums, and decorative items, like a shell collection, find a home on suspended shelves. Yarn and knitting needles, once tangled and strewn, occupy a sweet basket. A sleek white console tucked into dead space under the window holds photos and scrapbooking supplies.
Adding a pleasant patterned rug to a practical space (even on top of wall-to-wall) can be transformative, joining the room to the homey feel of the rest of the house. This latticework option adds movement and echoes the wall color, which provides a calm backdrop for Jess’s rainbow of supplies.
To buy: The Fold desk, unfortunately, has sold out, but see other styles at cb2.com. Tall round Makati bin (under desk), $20, containerstore.com. Clear plastic Peg-Board organizer kit, $47 for two panels, stacksandstacks.com. Asker containers (white, on Peg-Board), $6 each, ikea.com. Utility stool, $165, schoolhouseelectric.com. Spindle thread rack by June Tailor, $20, joann.com. Accordion Modern swing-arm wall sconce, $189, shadesoflight.com. Round date-leaf basket (holding yarn), $40, containerstore.com. Ekby Järpen shelf with Gällö brackets, $45, ikea.com. Model One radio by Tivoli (on shelf), $150, tivoliaudio.com. Chill mini media white console, $349, cb2.com. Semikolon CD photo boxes (in console), $27 each, seejanework.com. Fallon rug by Jill Rosenwald for Surya, $385 (five by eight feet), rugsusa.com. Paint: Cape Hatteras Sand in Aura, $66 a gallon, benjaminmoore.com.
Taking the Closet From Scary to Airy: Before
Taking the Closet From Scary to Airy: After
Mounted slightly wider than the door frame, drapes make the closet look bigger, offer easy access, and add style to the space. Replacing a narrow upper shelf improves functionality: Fabric swatches live in clear-front containers, and artwork is protected in labeled white boxes.
Projects Filed Away
The right containers make all the difference when it comes to storing various materials: glass jars for easily lost items; open bins on the floor to keep underway projects findable and portable. Widely spaced shelves house supplies of all heights without that “stuffed in” stress.
Gift Wrap Taken Seriously
A wall-mounted bike rack serves as a wrapping-paper caddy. A trunk, its lid fitted with tension rods for ribbon, holds clear bins containing bows and cards; casters allow it to be rolled into the main space during holiday wrapping marathons. Off to the right is a hook for small gift bags.
To buy: Cotton-canvas printed window panels in Scribble Lattice, $39 each, westelm.com. Linen drop-front sweater boxes (on high shelf, left), $30 each, containerstore.com. See Jane Work basic art boxes (white), $18 each, seejanework.com. Collapsible linen-closet storage bins (on floor), $22 each, greatusefulstuff.com. Ekby Järpen shelf with Gällö brackets, $45, ikea.com. Bike rack: Gray Screw Eyes hooks by Real Organized, $7 each, lowes.com. Super Jumbo Naked trunk, $313, wayfair.com. Our Shoe Boxes (in trunk), $2 each, containerstore.com. Wrapping paper, from $8 a roll, paper-source.com. Paint for closet interior: Valspar Woodsmoke EB482, $30 a gallon, lowes.com.