by | May 23, 2021 | Decor, DIY, Organizing | 0 comments

Cabinet building office cabinets using IKEA Sektion kitchen cabinets for a beautiful, bright, and modern home office makeover during week 3 of the one room challenge of spring 2021.

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We are in week 3 of the One Room Challenge and I am making over an open dining area into a beautiful, modern and bright home office.

I am participating as a guest blogger with many other bloggers in the One Room Challenge where everyone gets to makeover a room of their choice over 8 weeks.

You can see all the featured designers here and all the guest participants with a blog here.

I created the design and plans in week 1 and chose paint colors for the walls and cabinets in week 2.

This week was a bit slow for me. I had planned to finish painting the walls and build all the base cabinets, but life took over and between work, kids and health, I didn’t get off to a great start!

I did finish painting and barely started building cabinets. Anyone who has done any sort of DIY know that it counts 🙂

When it comes to DIY, nothing ever goes as planned, right?


I wanted white walls for my home office and I chose Simply White by Benjamin Moore for the walls.

My husband helped me prime and paint the walls. Since we have very light gray walls, we did one coat of primer and 2 coats of paint.

We painted three of the four walls in eggshell finish and the wall where the cabinets will is painted in a flat finish.

I plan to stencil that wall to create an accent and based on my research, a flat finish is the best for stenciling.

Since the room has a 12-foot ceiling, it was not easy to paint because we had to make multiple trips up and down the ladder.

It’s finally done and I absolutely love the color! 🙂 It’s a bright white, not too cool or not to warm.


My initial thought process when designing this space was to build all the cabinets and drawers myself so that I could customize them to my needs.

Given the pandemic, not only has plywood become quite expensive but is not in stock anywhere near me.

So I started looking for alternatives and found that IKEA SEKTION kitchen cabinets would be a perfect match. They are very versatile and high customizable. They come in various sizes (heights, widths, and depths) to suit a multitude of options.

Even though these are kitchen cabinets, the amount of configurations that you can choose makes them a great choice for any space, and depending on your choices, it can be budget friendly or high-end.

There are so many choices for what goes inside the cabinets too, like shelves, drawers, pull-outs and so on.

Overall I am happy with this choice 🙂


The great thing about IKEA is that they have a online room planner that you can use to design the space.

You can enter the dimensions of the room, ceiling height and add windows and doors too! It even lets you change wall color and flooring. This helps visualize exactly how the space will look like when you are done with the design.

I started playing around with the planner and here is the cabinet design I came up with.

Here is what the inside drawers and shelves look like. I was able to completely cutomize it to my needs

The planner lets you see your design in 2D and 3D and it’s so helpful to see the different views.


Let me talk about the cabinets that I chose for my design.

I chose two tall cabinets 90 inches in height, on either end with a width of 18″ depth of 15 inches, mainly because there is a window on the right wall which leaves a depth f just 18.5 inches to work with. Therefore, these shallow depth cabinets were a perfect fit.

Once I had these shallow cabinets in place, I chose cabinets with a depth of 24 inches and a height of 30 inches (without legs) for the remaining portion of my design so that I could get the height and depth needed for a desk. The desk space will be right in the middle.

I will be building a base for these cabinets out of MDF boards instead of using the legs to restrict the height. The average height of desks is somewhere between 29-32 inches.

Right next to the shallow cabinets are base cabinets with a width of 24 inches with a drawer at the top and a door at the bottom. I can stash my printer inside one of these cabinets hopefully.

The next base I chose is 18 inches in depth and has 3 drawers where I can store a lot of smaller items like notebooks and other stationery items.

There will be a desk space between these 18 inch cabinets. I plan to build the desk top myself by joining pine boards.

The only element not shown in this design are open bookshelves that will sit on top of the 24 inch cabinets. I did not have an option to add that in the IKEA room planner. These will be added separately.

This design provides me with all the storage and function that I need for my home office. The open bookshelves will let me add some decor to liven up the space!


My plan for this week was to build all the cabinet frames so that I could dry fit them against the wall. Then I can mark the area that needs to be stenciled and also get my measurements for the desktop.

Here are some of the stencil choices I am considering.

I could not complete building all the base cabinets, but I did get started on the cabinet building. It’s quite easy to build the frame. It has just four pieces

  1. Two side panels
  2. The base
  3. Backing

All I have to do is put them together. The first one went fairly quickly and I am hoping that I can build the rest fast enough and make up for some of the lost time in the coming week.

That’s pretty much it for this week. Finished painting started with the cabinet building.

If you would like to see other spaces that I have designed, check out my Command Center Design post.

Do join me on the journey as my home office takes shape and comes to life during this season’s One Room Challenge! Don’t forget to follow me on Instagram for more detailed and day-to-day updates on the progress.

Check out other posts related to my home office transformation.





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Thank you for being here! I’m Divya. I love everything organizing, DIY, and Decor.

Divya is the coffee-loving, multi-passionate, perpetual learner, and writer behind the scenes of Smile and a Coffee. She is a mom of 2 and a project manager at her day job. As a lover of all things organization, decor, and DIY, she documents her journey of organizing and decorating her home on Smile and a Coffee while inspiring her readers with great tips and tricks to create a beautiful home and wonderful life.

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