12 More Inches

Our guest bedroom (currently Handy Sammy’s room) is small.  Not even 10 feet wide by 11 feet long, including the foot deep bookshelf.  And it doesn’t get a ray of direct sun light, so it can be dark sometimes.

New-House-Guest-Bedroom April 13 2012

Add in furniture and fill the bookshelves and it’s one cluttered, dark little room lacking real storage and organization.


I found a pint-sized dresser, for more storage space.  But it took up valuable floor real estate.  And left a tiny walk way between it and the bed.


We had always planned to notch out the bookshelves, pushing the bed against the wall.  Spurred by the new dresser, we started a few weekends ago.  It took me an hour and five laundry baskets to clear off the shelves.Bookshelf-Contents-in-Baskets


We drew a quick sketch and talked about our plan and options.  And then Ben worked his magic and Sawzall.  It worked best for us to cut out the vertical supports, leaving the tops.


This allowed us to keep the shelves above the bed the same width and reuse the cut pieces as side supports.


The old shelves cut down to fit the narrower sides.


A new piece at the top framed out the bed opening.  To brighten up the room, we painted everything bright white.


For function, Ben added an outlet on either side of the bed, inside the bookshelf.


Sconces (these specifically, hung upside down, though I would have loved to have these if clearances weren’t an issue) replace the old table lamps, giving ample reading light while keeping clutter off shelves.


With the bed pushed against the wall, we gained 12 inches of floor space.


Obviously we’re not finished.  Here’s what’s still on my to do list:

Let shelves dry before loading contents back on

Find the right paint color (hence the Technicolor walls) – jeesh, finding a warm gold that isn’t too green or orange is tough!

Install new baseboard, crown, and door trim

Sew a bed skirt

Hang the headboard

Pick out an overhead light and install it