Thanks for stopping by the MPS Blog. Here you'll find all the nitty gritty, behind-the-scenes details of the projects you see on my Instagram. Grab a cup of coffee and take a look around. Happy DIYing!
This post is in partnership with The Container Store.
This project has made such a big impact in our home. As with many households around the country, we went from being working parents… to stay-at-home working homeschool parents… overnight. Suddenly, the dining table, island, and any empty surface with a chair was free game for zoom calls, math lessons, and daily science class. Teachers everywhere… I see you, and I appreciate you!
With 4 kids, I’m gotten pretty crafty about creating more functional space in our home. I created an Elfa Office out of a cluttered guest bedroom closet almost 2 years ago and fell in love with the Elfa system.
The Elfa system is so versatile and easy to install for even the most basic DIYer. I installed this in less than an afternoon so I wanted to show you all the steps to create your own functional office space – no matter what space you have!
The first step (and maybe the most challenging) is deciding the design for your Elfa space. I used graph paper to jot down an initial design and then passed it off to the TCS designers. They will come up with a design and order list for you for FREE! It’s such an amazing service and I can’t recommend it enough.
Once you order your Elfa system, I like to get everything laid out and organized. In general, only a few tools are required. A stud finder, level, drill, and a pencil. (Hack saw if you are cutting the tracks.)
This system starts with the Elfa Easy Hang Top track. It is the only thing that is attached to the wall and everything else attaches to that track. I start my installation by marking where the studs are along the wall that I’m working with. This is my all-time favorite “never fails me” stud finder!
Next I determine how long the top track should be based on your design. They come in 32″ and 80″ lengths so odds are you will have to cut one for your space. Note: when you order – TCS will cut this to size for you! I chose not to do this just so I could show you how to! I usually clamp the piece to something and cut through with a standard hacksaw.
I used a drill to install the top track into the studs. If the holes in the track fall in spots where there are no studs, you can use the drywall anchors provided by TCS or use a drill bit to drill a hole in the track. I think it’s important to install the track into studs! Make sure you use a level to ensure the track is installed straight.
Here’s a quick video to show the next step… adding the uprights! They slide in effortlessly from the top of the track and you can move them around freely until you have them in the right spot.
I chose to start installing the drawers from the bottom up so I could make sure my desk height would be accurate. The drawers or shelves will automatically space out your uprights to the appropriate width so no measuring required!
Here’s my helper making sure we got just the right height for the desk before we finished hanging all the shelves. I went with the Elfa Decor Desk Top in birch that TCS makes which has a slightly different surface than the Elfa Decor Shelves – perfect for writing on… and keeping clean!
Things went pretty fast after this. The ventilated shelf brackets slide into the uprights and then you can place the shelf right in those! I used 3 of the 48″ Elfa Decor Desktops (20″ deep) for my desk area and 24″ long Decor Shelves for the rest of the station that are all 12″ deep.
The Elfa system makes so many options to make your project look finished. These are the White Elfa Bracket Covers and I make sure and use them on any end of an Elfa unit that would have half of the bracket exposed. See below how they finish it off!
They also make a top track cover that will hide the inside of the top track and holes. These come in 24″ lengths but can easily be cut to size if your shelves are a different size.
Make sure and pick up a roll of the Standard & Upright Cover to cover the uprights! The roll covers 166″ or 2 standard 84″ uprights.
Once you get your shelves in place, it’s time to organize!
I used a combination of open baskets and closed storage to make the most out of this area. This is in our main area of our family room basement so my goal was to make it functional for the kids but also tidy and put together.
These magazine holders and the perfect solution for categorizing their various school books and coloring books. I also love the versatility of the Elfa Utility Boards. There are so many options for hooks and shelves that you can easily keep the work surface clutter-free while having everything at arms reach!
These little fabric storage bins are the perfect size for small hands. This one holds all the pine cones that my 4-year-old collects on our walks and then paints on during art time. I also picked up 2 of these charging stations for my older ones to keep their devices and headphones charged. I have their cords wrapped up in their drawers for easy access… everything has a home!
My absolute favorite new storage containers might be these SmartStore Totes. They are mix and match with different inserts and I’ve found so many uses for them! The possibilities are endless with arts and craft storage.
I am so in love with this new Elfa homework station and just from the few weeks we have had it, I know the kids are too! It has been the perfect spot to corral all the creativity and energy from 4 young kids at home everyday!
Note: The Elfa system is currently 30% off for a limited time!
What space would you create with the Elfa system? Let me know below for a chance to win $200 towards your own Elfa system or organizing supplies!
Wife, Mama, Renovator, DIY Educator, and Founder of Making Pretty Spaces. If you’re ready to create a home you love with your own two hands, I’m your girl.