One Room Challenge- Week 5: Set-Backs, Office Accessories, and a Race to the Finish Line


I’m gonna go ahead and call Week Five of the One Room Challenge, the “Budget Breaker”. To be honest, I didn’t set a firm budget before starting my home office makeover but I had an idea of what I would be comfortable with, how much I was willing to spend on certain components, and projects I would take on to save money in certain areas. But, desperate times call for desperate measures and this week, I threw all that frugality out the window. Please note- this is not the approach I recommend (or practice) for all projects haha

*You can find the end result and the full office makeover reveal HERE.

I mentioned last week that because of my personal schedule, the entire room has to be finished and photographed by this Friday. Almost a full week early. Late last week, I started getting nervous about items I still hadn’t received for the room… slowly, they all started piling up as to-do’s which would have to be accomplished by the end of this week. In addition to the ORC mania, work and life have been kind of nuts… no time for error. So, when I came down with something late last week, I knew Murphy’s Law was in full effect. I’ve managed as well as I can but having less energy and close to zero patience and tolerance, it became a lot easier to resort to a few “Plan B”s to get some tasks marked off the list.

One project I had been looking forward to was painting my collection of magnetic-close boxes. Between the several I had purchased a couple years ago, a healthy number of Vineyard Vine gift boxes (several not shown below), and the few magazine holders and file boxes I brought home from the Target Dollar Spot, I had a collection of about 14. I spent too much on seven cans of white spray paint, toughened up and took my half delirious self outside and set to work. I’ll save you from the suspense… after a few hours and several coats, they looked horrible. HORRIBLE.


With days to go and zero idea of how I would be styling my shelves and storing certain office items, I did what any normal sick person on a tight deadline would do. I headed to the Container Store… most importantly, I tried to not appear visibly mortified when the cashier stated my total. Had I gone with the Container Store plan from the beginning, it wouldn’t have been a big deal. I would have planned for it. I would have saved time from trying to force a DIY project in which I wasn’t confident, and I would have saved $50 in wasted spray paint.

Even though I have grass cloth being installed tomorrow, I came home and staged my shelves to make sure I was satisfied with the pieces. Here’s a little peek before it all has to come down 😉


I’m looking forward to assigning contents to each and writing cute labels on all the bins. I also hit up the book section of a local Goodwill; and as I always do, got the “Wow! You must really love to read!” when I took my loaded cart to the check-out counter. As I have done in other areas of my home, I searched for book spines in a white/gray color palette and turned them to have pages facing forward.



I ran down the street to take a quick peek in West Elm… you know, to see if there was anything that would just COMPLETE my shelves and dress up my bins. Of course there was… But, I mainly loaded up in their clearance section. Not all items are still available but you may have luck in your local store.







I wholeheartedly agree it is important to fill your home with items of meaning, and I do. And they make me happy. But you know what else makes me happy? Completed, pretty, finished shelves. 😉 These are the accessories and items I didn’t plan for… but, as I said at the beginning of the post, at this point I’m making judgement calls and with a week left, there is zero time to sit around and wait on sales.

A few of my desk accessories arrived and I went out and shopped a few more this past week. Here’s a peek at some of my desk accessories and essentials.




Ok, so now that I’ve shown some up close glimpses, I’ll show the reality of the big picture as it currently stands.


Yep… it’s a wreck. And with blinds still having to come down, drawers and cabinets that need to be organized, and everything in the built-ins coming out before the morning, it’s only going to get more messy.

I have actually made more progress tonight than all of this past week. The art is officially hung, Dave installed my dimmer and is in the process of hanging the TV, and everything is starting to take shape. My pillow covers arrived today and my Roman shades are set to be delivered tomorrow. We still have to “move” me back into the office, work on a few IT solutions, haul boxes and closet leftovers downstairs. But, after the grass cloth installer finishes tomorrow, we will ALMOST be there! Next week is the final week and the big reveal. Make note and join me then. Hopefully, my credit card will be much better managed over the next few days and the last decisions will come easily. Here’s hoping!


Rug (7’10” x 10’10”) | Lamp (Table- Brass)  | Linen Tapered Drum Lamp Shade (Medium-White) | Oversized Chunky Throw (Ivory) | Faux Mohair Oversized Throw (Gray) | Soft Shimmer Large Art Print (30×40, white mat, matte brass frame) | Gold Foil Leaf Art (11×11, matte brass frame) | Custom Notepad | Marble Coaster – HomeGoods (SIMILAR| Amerock Cabinet Pulls (Golden Champagne) 6 5/16” and 5 1/16” | Gray Velvet Slipper Chair- HomeGoods (SIMILAR)| Gold Mirror- HomeGoods (SIMILAR) | Trestle Table (Gray Acacia- 76″ x 43″) | Paint: Sherwin Williams On the Rocks

If you missed any progress, get caught up here:


*You can find the end result and the full office makeover reveal HERE.

Be sure to check out the Week 5 progress of all the other ORC participants HERE.


A special “thank you” to my sponsors this week for making this project possible.
Pottery Barn  

A big thank you also to Bobby Barton of Heartwood Renovations, and Darryl Ponquinette of Ponquinette Fine Woodworks for making my built-in dreams come true.

*post contains affiliate links*

Share this:
Kelley Nan headshot


Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


  1. 11.3.16
    Jennifer said:

    Oh my! You had fun shopping for accessories! Such beautiful choices. Can’t wait to see where the items in the shopping bag collection land!

    • 11.3.16

      Jen, thank you! I have a lot of returns to make too haha- I went a little overboard before I narrowed it down to these 😉

  2. 11.3.16
    Tamara said:

    This is coming together perfectly and I’m so excited for next week! You amaze me Kel! No matter what, you always get it done! Awesome stuff and I hope you’ve kicked that sickness to the curb! xo

    • 11.3.16

      Tam, you amaze ME! I’m trying… powering through. On the mend but still sound a bit like a man haha

  3. 11.3.16
    Ashley said:

    I could totally be productive in that office! Great job. It is so organized and clean! Love it.

    • 11.3.16

      Ashley, that is what I am hoping! And also, to organize and STAY organized. You should see my current desk situation… good Lord! haha

  4. 11.3.16
    Molly said:

    Love this Kelley and can’t wait for the final reveal! Rooting for you! Hope you’re feeling better 🙂

    • 11.3.16

      Molly, thank you! I am so excited and ready… just a few more things I have my fingers crossed for 😉

  5. 11.3.16

    Girlfriend you are inspiring me to throw that budget out the window and go to West Elm and pick out some amazingness. All those accessories you picked out are PERFECT. I can’t wait to see the bookshelves once the grass cloth is installed. I wanted to put grasscloth in the back of my built ins in my living room but haven’t gotten around to it yet. SO DARN EXCITED to see this full room reveal and I hope you are feeling better Kelley! Ain’t nobody got time to be sick this time of year!!!

    • 11.3.16

      CC, NO!! You stick to that budget and rock it! He is here installing now and I am dying to take a peek. Just add that to the never ending to-do-one-day list we all have haha. Can’t wait to see yours!

  6. 11.3.16

    If I’ve learned anything during my very first ORC, it’s that EVERYTHING. WILL. GO. WRONG. Sorry you’ve had to deal with the extra hiccups, but despite all that, you still manage to make the space STUNNING – and you’re nearly done!! I had a similar (desperate) shopping trip yesterday – except I came away with only 3 items. I’m the WORST at making on-the-spot decisions! Maybe I’ll have better luck at Home Goods today.

    Chuckling at the “reality” photo, though. I did the same this week – photographed carefully styled details, and then showed what the rest of the space looks like (not pretty!). I hope you get to feeling better very soon!

    P.S. I realize it may be too late, but IKEA has some super budget-friendly organization items… and since you live in the ATL area, you wouldn’t have to drive 3 hours (like me…)

    • 11.3.16

      I hope you had good luck today! And, you are so right. But, I have loved the process and can’t wait to do it again! The IKEA is a little over an hour, 2 with traffic but earlier this week, I was so wishing I had gone! Excited for my new things even though my credit card isn’t as pleased with me haha!

  7. 11.3.16
    Bree said:

    Kel, I just busted out laughing about your finished, pretty shelves comment? I’m the same way! I can’t wait to see the grasscloth and then if course the big reveal soon!! It’s already amazing so I know the reveal will absolutely blow me away!!! Xoxo

    • 11.3.16

      Right?! Haha- if I put all sentimental stuff up there, 1. it would take forever; 2. it would probably look ugly haha! I am all about a collected look and special things but a room makeover in a few weeks? Gimme all the retail accessories!

  8. 11.3.16

    Love it Kel! I should have given myself the ORC and maybe I’d have my office done too. haha. Looking forward to the final reveal!!!

    • 11.3.16

      Tana, thank you! NEXT SPRING!!!! Do it!!! Still want to see updates of your home!

  9. 11.3.16
    Mysha said:

    Girl you amaze me! Some how despite your sickness and diy set back, you pulled everything off just like it was planned that way originally! Way to go and feel better soon. Love your office

    • 11.3.16

      Mysha, thank you! We gotta push through 😉 No time for that haha. Can’t wait to check out your progress this week!

  10. 11.3.16
    Daraka said:

    It’s all coming together so beautifully! That light fixture is to die for! Can’t wait to see next week. -Daraka

    • 11.3.16

      Daraka, thank you so much! I am so anxious but ready!

  11. 11.3.16
    Joni King said:

    Another one of your totally awesome projects is coming together. I can’t wait to see the finished room! You rock with energy and eagerness to complete the project despite feeling like c*@# – Go Kelley Nan!!! Hugs!

    • 11.3.16

      Joni, thank you so much! I can’t wait to spend my days in here. So lucky to have you <3

  12. 11.4.16

    This space is going to be just beautiful like the rest of your house! I love your honesty about what hasn’t gone right, because we have all had those moments in these challenges! I also hear you about the budget going out the window! Sometimes you just do what you need to do to make your space look the way you need it to. We are visual people after all. Just love everything you have selected and am looking forward to seeing the reveal!

    • 11.4.16

      Kristine, thank you and I am so glad you understand! I hate feeling like I am throwing money around (time to tighten the bootstraps in another place this month! haha) but if it gives me peace of mind for this finished room, I am all for it!

  13. 11.4.16
    Shauna said:

    Kelley, this is looking so fabulous! Sorry about the spray paint catastrophe…been there before! ugh! You need to rest up so your better for next week! Sending you well wishes sweet friend.

  14. 11.4.16
    Gretchen Thomas said:

    Love your honesty and I feel your pain. You are so close to the finish line and I know the final product will be magnificent!

  15. 11.7.16
    yuni said:

    Kelley, I loved reading this real life post because I could totally relate! I love all the pieces you chose for the shelves and I know it’s all going to be so gorgeous! Thursday can’t come fast enough!

  16. 11.7.16

    Loving every detail, Kelley! Sorry about the spray paint problems – you live and learn I suppose, right?! Can’t wait to see the reveal!

  17. 11.7.16

    I love all the pieces you splurged on. Don’t tell my husband, but I’m pretty sure this week is my favorite every ORC because I can rationalize buying anything and everything. I’ve put off buying those same Nate Berkus gorgeous scissors for years, but this week they hopped right into the cart.

    I can’t wait to see how everything came together in your office. It’s going to be SO gorgeous!

  18. 11.9.16

    Oh Kelley!!! I am loving everything!!! You have such a beautiful eye! I hope you thoroughly enjoyed your vacation and look forward to your reveal! Can you believe it?! It’s almost time!!!!! xox, Emily

  19. 4.4.20
    Cheryl Alexander said:

    Hi Kelley, I just started following you today & have enjoyed seeing your office transformatiom. I am in the process of doing the same but am struggling in ways to balance out the room & still provide necessary storage & organization. You have given me some great ideas here!

    • 4.6.20

      I am so happy I was able to help! It can be a struggle to stay organized and these are some things that have worked for me. Good luck with your project! xoxo