I can't tell you how great it feels to finally have this DIY corner desk completed! If you're a newsletter subscriber, you'll know that building a small corner desk has been on my agenda for the last few months. It's the reason why I'm so excited to put a big fat tick next to: 'Build a DIY corner desk', on the 'to-do' list, for my tiny office makeover!
Looking for a ready-made small corner desk?
TIP: Looking for a ready-made corner desk for a small office space? Check out my ideas for small corner desks to buy at the end of this post.
You will find small corner desks and computer desks with storage and without. There's something there to fit even the smallest home office.
You can also shop my office at the end of this post.
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Table of contents
- Looking for a ready-made small corner desk?
- How the room at the top of the stairs became a tiny office
- How the room looked before
- Making plans for a DIY corner desk
- Maximizing storage - Another problem solved
- A DIY corner desk for the room at the top of the stairs
- DIY Corner Desk Finished!
- Easy custom desk
- Watch it on YouTube
- Things left to do in this tiny office
- Build a corner desk Project (Tick)
- Shop my office
- Small corner desks - to buy
- These posts are good too
- See the other posts in this series:
How the room at the top of the stairs became a tiny office
When we built our house, we never intended this space to be an office. In fact, it was never intended to be any sort of 'room' at all. It's just the first-floor landing or the room at the top of the stairs. It leads to the loft space and our guest room.
Creating office space
The more I looked at this space, the more I realized that it had the potential to be more than 'dead' space. At least, I could fit a desk and some storage in there, call it an office, and have done with it.
I grabbed a mishmash of furniture from around the house and made do with that for the first few years.
Then, when 'Chalking Up Success' was born, I found myself spending more and more time at my computer. The tiny desk became cramped with no extra space on the table top to spread out my folders and journals.
It was time for a new desk.
How the room looked before
Making plans for a DIY corner desk
That's when I really started to think about how I could transform this space into an organized office. I could build a small corner desk with storage.
Most of all, I wanted to make the most of the available desk space. I wanted to have an area for writing and planning and enough space for my computer monitor, keyboard, and printer.
Making a Mood Board
I knew this small office transformation wasn't going to happen overnight. First, I made a plan and started a mood board. (Read more about using mood boards in this post). I started to collect desk design ideas and ideas of how I wanted the small office to look.
Because the space is tiny, buying a corner desk didn't seem to be a viable option. Then, I started looking into how we could build a DIY small corner desk.
Maximizing storage - Another problem solved
Whilst I was figuring out a solution for the small corner desk, I had a great idea for another DIY project. It was an easy plan that would maximize the storage in this room and get my files up off the floor.
I share this office with my Australian Shepherd, Brilli. She is usually lying as close to my feet as she can get. That means there's not much leg space and even less floor space available.
You can read how I solved that problem here.
As soon as that project was finished, I couldn't wait to get going with building the small corner desk.
After making a mood board, I had a pretty good idea of how I wanted the DIY desk to look. I decided that I wanted to create a floating corner desk with a butcher block desk top.
Now I just needed to figure out how I was going to fit the perfect desk into this small room.
A DIY corner desk for the room at the top of the stairs
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Time needed: About 2 days.
One length of
Damp Cloth (To wipe down after sanding)
Wood oil/wax mix
Screws (My wall is made of brick, different screws are needed for a stud wall).
Rawl plugs (to hold the screws in place in the wall and specific to the type of screws used)
Circular saw Like this one (you only need this if you need to make adjustments as we did)
Adjustable legs (I used three). You can also get the desk legs here.
The first thing we did was to measure the office space. I had already decided that an 'L' shaped corner desk was going to be the best use of space in this tiny office so off we went to the builders' merchants to see what we could find.
Choosing a desktop
Having already used oak for this project, we decided to go for oak again for the small corner desk. Luckily, we found some oak work surface which is usually used for kitchen counters and the like.
We gave our measurements to the carpenter at the store and he cut the two 'L' shaped pieces to size for us. The best part is that he also drilled some holes on the underside of the work surface so that we could use clips to join the two pieces together (as well as using wood glue).
- Preparing the corner desk
The oak was untreated so the first job was sanding and sealing the top of the desk. I used 80 grit sandpaper over the entire desk at first moving on to 120 grit which I knew would give the wood a lovely smooth finish. Read this post for my method for sanding and sealing the wood.
- Supporting the corner desk
For this building project, I wanted to make a 'floating' corner desk but oak is heavy and we were worried that wall supports might not be enough to hold the desk in place.
The perfect solution was to add three legs to our DIY corner desk – one at each end of the desk and one where the two pieces are joined together.
We thought about attaching hairpin legs but they couldn't get any in the right size.
We managed to get some desk legs from IKEA that were a perfect fit.
The legs are adjustable and we set them towards the middle of the desk so that they are not so obvious when you walk into the room. In fact, only the leg which sits directly underneath the join is visible the other two are hidden by the file cabinets and the staircase.
We added wooden supports to the walls at intervals along the wall and the corner desk rests on these
We picked up the wooden supports from our local hardware store.
There are no photos of us fitting the corner desk to the supports because it took three of us to maneuver the floating desk into place and there was no room left for the camera or video!
TIP: Here's an alternative desktop idea for your corner office desk. Use wooden boards and attach trim pieces around the front and sides with a nail gun.
This is how our DIY corner desk looked with just the first long piece in place. You can see how the join was made.
TIP: To join the two desk pieces together, you could use pocket holes and pocket hole screws.
The desk is resting on the wooden supports.
DIY Corner Desk Finished!
After that, I got a bit carried away in the excitement of seeing our new corner desk (almost) finished. I couldn't wait to start bringing all my things back into the room.
The photos are a bit scarce but here's how it looks at the moment. I can't tell you how excited I am to finally have my very own corner desk with a modern look.
The light in this room is fantastic for photography. Up until now, it's been almost impossible to shoot in here without removing half of the items in the room.
Easy custom desk
Adding a custom desk to the corner of the room was easy and didn't take a lot of time.
Now, I have the working space I need for all of my office work.
I have plenty of storage space too.
The side desk provides the perfect space for a flat lay shoot. In fact, I shot my most recent stock bundle on the desk in this. (The affiliate link below will take you to my shop on Creative Market).
TIP: Rolling containers make great storage for the open space at the sides of the desk.
Watch it on YouTube
Watch the video tutorial for this project on YouTube here.
Things left to do in this tiny office
Fit a wood trim
There is a gap at the back of the desk for all the computer wires. I want to buy some wood trim to seal that up. I'll leave just one small opening behind the monitor for the wires.
Hide the computer wires
Another task will be looking for a great way to hide the wires underneath the desk. I hate that it looks so untidy (hanging cables are one of my pet hates). I'm not sure yet how I'm going to do that but I'm sure I'll find a solution.
Touch up wall paint
We took off some of the paint whilst trying to maneuver the corner desk into place. I'm going to have to fix that at some point 😉
Office wall decoration
I have a few options in mind for prints or other kinds of wall décor. There might be a bit of DIY involved, we'll see.
Warm office rug
I love this round rug. There is no under-floor heating in this space I also need something warm underneath the desk. I need to keep my feet warm in winter (when Brilli is not lying on them haha!). You can find similar rugs to mine here.
You may have seen this lamp which I made for this office. It hangs right over the printer. It was a really easy DIY project and gives off a lovely cozy light. I desperately need a task lamp too. I've been waiting until this DIY corner desk was finished so that I could see how I would use the workspace.
I'm also torn on whether to use a space-saving wall light or whether to buy a free-standing desk lamp. I think something like this would work really well in this room. The jury is still out on that one! Whatever desk lamp I choose, it has to have a simple design.
Blind for the roof window
I love the light the roof window brings into this north-facing room. Sometimes though, the light is a bit too bright.
I'd like to add a window blind to diffuse the light a little. That would also mean that I can do away with the screen protector I'm currently using over my monitor.
Build a corner desk Project (Tick)
At last, the biggest project in this room, 'build a corner desk' has been ticked off my list. This tiny office makeover is well on the way to being finished!
What do you think of it so far? Do you have any ideas or suggestions for the rest of the items on my list? If so, feel free to let me know in the comments below.
UPDATE: See how I transformed this space into a modern rustic farmhouse-style home office for winter here.
Shop my office
Small corner desks - to buy
Here is a selection of ready-made small corner desks with storage and without. You should be able to find beautiful corner desks for your small space in online stores here:
If you have a small house with not much space a simple corner desk is a great option.
When you just need some personal space or your own desk to work from home, there are some great DIY options.
It's easy to urn a corner of your room into a DIY computer desk. Consider finding a space in your living room, bedroom, hallway, or attic.
This is such a simple build that would work for a craft room too.
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