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Project

Clever Office: Shared Space

Introduction

It can be a challenge to create a desk that's roomy enough for one person, let alone two. This symmetrical setup is the perfect solution, unifying a pair of workstations in an open configuration that fits snugly against almost any stretch of wall without overwhelming the rest of the room.

Kitchen cabinets hung overhead are put to creative use, eliminating the need for bulky file cabinets and providing instant access to documents and miscellaneous items. With a simple design that fits seamlessly into this -- or any -- contemporary decor, they also provide discreet storage.

A functional backdrop crafted from alternating panels of bulletin and magnetic board is covered in unifying swaths of aqua linen. The vivid fabric conceals the different materials and stands out from the room's graphic black-and-white color scheme. Magnetic hooks, caddies, and tins provide hanging storage for small items.

Spice jars and bowls, whether vintage or modern, stash pushpins, stamps, and other odds and ends, keeping the narrow desktop relatively free of clutter.

A metal rolling cart, stowed between the desks, serves as a portable, versatile workstation. It can be dedicated to any of several household projects, such as gift wrapping. A cutting board with a grid tops the cart, and frequently used tools hang from a magnetic towel rack. Ribbon and other delicate supplies are housed in magnetic boxes, which won't slip or slide. Wine racks secure tubes of wrapping paper. Flat paper is organized by color in clear portfolios to ensure that the sheets remain wrinkle free.

Source
Martha Stewart Living, April 2008

Reviews (24)

  • 26 Oct, 2010

    Levidan -- there's no reason why you have to purchase the $400 cart. It's the concept that you need. Find inexpensive cabinets and hang them as shown. Find a cart and adapt it if necessary.The average homeowner can use this concept to design an office space within their own budget.

  • 26 Oct, 2010

    Levidan -- there's no reason why you have to purchase the $400 cart. It's the concept that you need. Find inexpensive cabinets

  • 26 Oct, 2010

    This idea allows lots of room to get creative at your local thrift store, hardware store or garage sale. After having had to share a work space with my husband and children for the last 10 years and being on the brink of moving into a different space than the one we're presently occupying, this is the kind of info that gives me hope for a more organized, harmonious future. Thanks!

  • 26 Oct, 2010

    I looked online for the metal cart .....Open Studio Paper File at the website mentioned, and it was over $400.00; I can only wonder at the total cost of this layout. Get Real! Can the average homeower/crafter afford such a layout. I cannot that is for sure. Sure, Great ideas...but just not worth the quick crafter's Organizing tips I thought I was subscribing too. OH well, back to my happy inexpensive clutter!

  • 25 Mar, 2009

    Love the close-up shots...thanks!

  • 23 Oct, 2008

    I have the April issue of MS Living, and the cart is listed as "Open Studio Paper File in white (#51267-1041), from Blick Art Materials, 800-828-4548 or dickblick.com.

  • 14 Oct, 2008

    where do you get the metal rolling cart inbetween the desks

  • 13 Oct, 2008

    Someone asked about the 6 drawer cabinet to the left of the desk?
    It looks like the same one from IKEA. They are only $40 and have wheels too! I have one. Each drawer fits a regular size piece of paper, so it's very convenient paper stasher for me.

  • 13 Oct, 2008

    I would like to know where to find the 6 drawer cabinet that is to the left of the desk.

  • 13 Oct, 2008

    A friend of mine is an interior decorator and I actually emailed her the picture from Martha - because they look very much alike! Ann has two desks to together side by side like that .. But instead of the cart in the middle she has a two drawer file cabinet.. you know where the files go the other way from "normal" So it looks like one long table. and her files are right there too! She has a work table in a different area. Be sure to check the HEIGHT of carts and desks to they line up properly!

  • 13 Oct, 2008

    A friend of mine is an interior decorator and I actually emailed her the picture from Martha - because they look very much alike! Ann has two desks to together side by side like that .. But instead of the cart in the middle she has a two drawer file cabinet.. you know where the files go the other way from "normal" So it looks like one long table. and her files are right there too! She has a work table in a different area. Be sure to check the HEIGHT of carts and desks to they line up properly!

  • 13 Oct, 2008

    ... or replace a big ol' CRT monitor with a flat-panel one, that are much less expensive these days than they used to be. That, plus a keyboard, will take about as much desk space as a laptop.

    If you have a compact one with a shallow footprint like most of the current models, it could probably fit nicely in the overhead cabinets/shelving. ;)

  • 13 Oct, 2008

    don't know where the printer would go but the laptop would negate the need for a bulky monitor

  • 13 Oct, 2008

    Great, but where do you put the bulkiest items--the computer and printer?

  • 13 Oct, 2008

    You can put those casters on any cabinet that may fit your space. You can buy the casters at your closest Hardware store, i.e., Lowe's or Home Depot. You can get the cabinets from them, or for a less exppensive choide, I'd check IKEA.

  • 13 Oct, 2008

    I google searched rolling carts and found one at globalindustrial.com
    I would like to find out other sources for the wine rack and storage portfolios but I can't find my April issue. Please help!

  • 13 Oct, 2008

    I absolutely love this picture and will use it for a model of my sewing computer space. (adapting a bit) I love sewing but hate the clutter it creates, with the ironing board, fabric everywhere, and supplies. This can be adapted to accomadate a table top ironing pad, and the cabinets above will take almost everything else. Thank you so much.
    Fran

  • 13 Oct, 2008

    I'd also like to know where to purchase the rolling cart, desk, cabinets etc... I haven't been saving the issues, just filing certain articles each month and giving the rest of the mag away.

  • 13 Oct, 2008

    I'll bet you can get cabinets very similar to that at Ikea. That's where mine are from and I LOVE them! Look in the kitchen section. I did a whole basement remodel with Ikea cabinets.

  • 31 Aug, 2008

    I can't get the April addition to the magazine so if someone knows where to get the desks and rolling cart please email me at: xtreme53@aol.com
    Thank you very much.

  • 12 Jun, 2008

    The magazine lists in full where to buy each item.

  • 2 Jun, 2008

    Where are the white overhead cabinets from? Do you know who makes them? I really would like to buy those for my new office!!

  • 17 May, 2008

    I love this! Who makes the metal rolling cart?

  • 4 Apr, 2008

    I love it!!!!!