I moved recently and needed a new furniture set for the living room. High on the list was an out-of-sight home office workstation that flowed with the living room layout.
My requirements for the project:
– TV unit, sideboard and bar in same look and feel – hidden workspace for teleworking – simple and understated – bring some warmth to my black & white interiors – made to measure look & feel for a reasonable budget – maximize storage opportunities – floating desk, high enough to clear path for the vacuum robot – under cabinet mood lighting – hide devices and cabling
The hidden home office had many design constraints.
For one, the monitor had to be at eye level when extended, but below cabinet level when lowered, while the range of vertical movement of the monitor is limited.
Next, the desk had to be at the ideal ergonomic height while the cabinet had to be enough off the floor for the vacuum robot to fit underneath.
I drew some inspiration from the HEMNES secretary desk and I ended up with a suitable plan. This then defined the above floor height for all cabinets.
SHOPPING FOR PARTS AND SUPPLIES
Kitchen Cabinets: – METOD wall cabinet frame, 60x37x40 – METOD wall cabinet frame 60x37x80 – Suspension rails to hang cabinets – VRENA worktops, made to measure by IKEA – VEDDINGE doors, white, 60×40
Lighting: – TRADFRI driver for wireless control – OMLOPP LED strips (discontinued, could be replaced by MITTLED) – STÖTTA LED strips with sensor
Smaller pieces worth mentioning: – UTRUSTA connection hardware for doors – HEMNES secretary desk (302.457.13) hinges for desk tabletop – UTRUSTA Hinge w b-in damper for kitchen 153° – MAXIMERA drawers
Not from IKEA: – Blum Aventos HK Top hinges (could be replaced by IKEA’s UTRUSTA – hinge with damper for horizontal door) – Eucalyptus black plywood 18mm, 1 sheet, from the DIY store, cut to panels for the hidden home office – Power Strip
Tools – Your average DIY hand tools – Driver drill to drill holes and screw – Drill hammer to hang the rails (since mine hang from stone walls) – Saw to cut plywood in angles the DIY store won’t cut (I used a table saw)
The first thing we did was to move the power outlets so they would end up behind the TV cabinet. We also plastered a PVC pipe into the wall to duct cords and cables from inside the cabinet to behind the TV. Tricks to hide wires I pulled before, see this hack for some details on how to do this.
PUTTING IT TOGETHER
I started out with the difficult part, which was putting together the inside of the hidden home office cabinet. This was then fitted with the sides of a standard METOD cabinet.
To drop the table top, I used the IKEA HEMNES hardware from a salvaged HEMNES secretary office desk.
After that the other cabinets were assembled, holes were made for electrical sockets and cable ducts. A big hole was cut in the bottom of a cabinet, to allow the hidden subwoofer’s bass to pass freely. OMLOPP LED strips were added and everything was hung from the suspension rails.
VRENA table tops were added, the table top for the hidden home office is mounted on Blum hinges that fold up to allow room for the monitor to lift when in use.
The Bar Cabinet & Sideboard
Putting together the bar cabinet and sideboard was pretty standard: put the METOD suspension rails on the wall, same height as the TV unit’s rails, put the cabinets together, add OMLOPP light strips, hang on wall, add doors and drawers and finish with the VRENA table top.
The bar cabinet is a combination of 3 high and 3 low METOD storage units. The low units went to the bottom and have drawers. The high units are on top with STÖTTA LED strips and UTRUSTA glass shelves.
Some UTRUSTA shelving were cut and mounted to hide the TRADFRI drivers.
Now for some photos:
This is the finished TV Cabinet with hidden built-in home office. When closed, the work space forms part of the living room decor, not your usual office furniture.
The finished TV Cabinet with hidden built-in home office, opened. It features a lift-up VRENA countertop and drop down desk space for the monitor and keyboard. Pull up a desk chair and it’s ready for work.
Close-up of the home office in black plywood. VRENA table top lifted, doors mounted with 153° hinges, table dropped and monitor lifted.
Side view of the home office setup. Shelves below offer plenty of storage for equipment. Keeping components black minimized clutter.
Close-up of the lifted table top hinge.
HEMNES secretary desk hinges used to drop the table top.
Home office with dropped monitor and table top, desk folded up.
How it looks on the inside when closed up. The choice of monitor is important: the range of the height adjustment has to be high enough to allow for the design to work (I had only 1 cm of freedom in my total design).
The TV cabinet
Under the TV cabinet without back panel with access to plugs and cable duct to TV (top left). The subwoofer is mounted speakers down on rubber studs over the holes in the cabinet base.
Finish close-up. The home office module is mounted off the wall by 1cm to allow the lifting hinges to work.
Now moving on to the different zones in the apartment.
The Bar Cabinet
The bar cabinet, drawers opened.
The bar cabinet, doors opened, vacuum robot charging under the cabinet reflecting the OMLOPP light. STÖTTA lights go light up automatically when doors are opened.
The sideboard with two sets of doors and two drawers.
Uniform design flow from one piece to the other.
Hiding TRADFRI cabling behind a cut vertically mounted UTRUSTA shelf.
I hope you enjoyed this hidden home office hack and it gave you a few ideas for your living room work space.