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Office Makeover and DIY Gallery Wall


A few months ago I decided I better get serious about my work outside of school-- and what better way than an office makeover? My office originally started out with hand-me-down items and mishmash (is that a word?) of random pictures hammered into the white walls. 

I knew it was time for a change. After all, I now own my first house-- so it was definitely time to "own" my very own work space! 

I began by creating a board on Pinterest-- items I thought were beautiful, color schemes that caught my eye, office setups that looked cozy, etc. I eventually narrowed it down to a color scheme. From there I created a collage of pictures using PowerPoint. I printed off the collage and took it with me whenever I went furniture shopping or paint shopping. Here was my collage:
I decided to paint the walls a minty teal green-- so we headed to Sherwin Williams and purchased a color called "Waterfall". I love the way it looks in both natural and artificial light. (Pardon my goofy husband) 
I purchased a gray desk online (it came in a million pieces and still isn't quite as sturdy as I would like-- but it is cute) 
Next, I painted a cheap laminate bookshelf white-- I really love built in shelves-- but I decided to save money on this by using what I already had. I also gave away books I was no longer going to read (I'm a book hoarder-- so it was really hard). 

Painting the laminate was pretty simple-- I used a primer and then a paint on top. I do think next time I will just buy a new shelf- since I find my time more valuable. 

I purchased a cute chair from Target-- to make a reading nook. The wastebasket I found on sale at Big Lots. I bought cheap black frames at Walmart (for the maps) and spray painted them navy to match my color scheme). 

I already owned navy curtains-- so I hung those up.  I gathered a wide selection of inspirational quotes (free printables found online), picture frames, etc. I bought a mirror from Big Lots, cheap frames from Walmart (for my free printables). I used picture frames given to me-- I bought a lamp, baskets, clock, and AMAZING corkboard from Hobby Lobby. This is the fun part-- the shopping and decorating. I bought this amazing chair from Walmart. 
Now I had to decorate the space above my desk. I wanted to do a gallery wall. 

Here is the BEST way to make a gallery wall. Take all of the items you want to use and arrange them on the ground. Take a photo. Look at other examples of gallery walls. Rearrange the items and take another photo. Do this until you have a few options. Ponder it a few hours-- ask others what they think-- and choose a style. 
Next, I took cheap brown paper (came in the boxes from the items I purchased online) and traced the outline of EACH item. I kid you not-- this is your saving grace. I also used a marker to mark where the nail holes are. 

After that I used my photo of my arrangement to hang the brown paper on the wall (I used painter tape)-- I adjusted the distance between items until it looked perfect. Then-- before I took the paper down I put the nails in.
I hung everything up-- and it worked PERFECTLY the first time. This method is amazing and fail-proof (I promise). 
My husband helped me hang my baskets and cork board on the adjacent wall. 
I set my lamp in the corner of my desk. I spray painted some mason jars and a sterilite drawer to match my color scheme. 
I set up my personal laminator-- and suddenly-- my office was complete! I love it! 

Hope you enjoyed reading about my DIY makeover-- and that it inspires you to create a special place where you can work! If you have any questions about any of my items leave me a comment and I'll do my best to let your know where I downloaded, purchased, etc. Have a blessed week! 
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Valentine's Day & Adjectives (Plus a Freebie)

I decided it was finally time to take down my snowman bulletin board in the hallway, and since Valentine's Day is looming around the corner-- I knew it would make a great bulletin board! 



This week we studied adjectives-- so I made sure to tie that into our new board! Here's a few pics of the finished hearts:


Here is how I made this board (easy and FREE):

1. Print off this sheet for students.
2. Write each students name on a sheet.
3. Tell your students that they will be getting a random sheet with a classmate's name on it. They will have to think of kind adjectives to describe that person. (I had my kids put a blinder up so they didn't feel like others were looking or judging their adjectives). I also told them to keep the person's name a secret. 
4. Randomly hand out papers-- I still don't know who some of my kids had-- and give them time to write. 
5. If they are lacking good adjectives-- pull up a list of positive adjectives. I read through a list and described what some of the words meant-- this helped a LOT. 
6. Collect papers (upside down for secret's sake-- they loved being hush-hush)
7. Go to www.tagxedo.com (Skip the next few instructions if you know how to use this website.)
8. Tagxedo needs to be run from Firefox or Internet Explorer (Chrome won't work).
9. Home page looks like this: 

10. Select the option "Create" (in orange at the top). Then your page should look like this: 

11. On the left-hand side click the option titled "shape" and select one of the hearts.


12. Change the colors by selecting the arrow next to "Theme":


13. Add student names and adjectives by clicking "Load" at the very top of the left-hand column. Type information from the worksheets-- and add/leave out any adjectives you want (that's the beauty of being in charge) and click "submit": 

14. You can click "Color" to adjust the colors slightly. When you get one you like-- click the "save/share" option and select the print tab. 

15. Go back to "load" and change out info to create a new heart with new adjectives. Print. Repeat.
16. Get all your prints and cut out the hearts. 
17. Assemble board and enjoy!

My students LOVE these! One of my girls told me her older sister still has her's from 2 years ago! They love seeing those positive traits portrayed on the wall for the school to see! Hope you've loved this idea! Thanks for stopping by!

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