Before and After: The Home Office

You may remember way, way back in 2014 I shared a before post about my guest/bedroom home office. You can check out the original post here. At that time I had just bought an amazing desk and credenza that I had deemed worthy of sacrificing my guest bedroom for. That sacrifice has taken much longer to complete than anticipated. It began with selling my tanker desk which was replaced by my kitchen table and several storage totes of its contents—and that’s kind of where it stopped for about two years. Two years of all of my office supplies being lost in boxes while a desk worth more than my car sat—appropriately—idle in the garage. But it has now happened. It has finally happened. Oh, glorious day my desk and credenza are here!

So what are these pieces? Well, they’re movie stars—sort of. Designed in 1959 by Bodil Kjaer, this rosewood desk and credenza were manufactured by E. Pederson and Sons A/S in Denmark. The designs earned some fame after appearing in Tiger Tanaka’s office in the 1967 James Bond film You Only Live Twice.

Tiger Tanaka's Office in You Only Live Twice, 1967.

Tiger Tanaka’s Office in You Only Live Twice, 1967.

My pair, however, had a little harder life. Originally belonging to a prominent Des Moines architect, they made their way through a host of area executives at publishing and insurance companies before finally being abandoned in a corporate move. A realtor saved them as they were being hauled to a construction dumpster and eventually sold them to a friend who sold them to me. This was likely the only chance I’d have to own them (they don’t show up in the wild) so I took it. They’ve waited so long for a good home—so let’s see how the transformation went, shall we?

Before.

Before.

IMG_8923

After

There’s still a lot of stuff to figure out on this wall, including the art, cord management issues (something that wasn’t a problem in 1959), the rug (which needs to be bigger and under the desk) and possibly the paint color. More on that one in a bit.

Before

Before

After

After

Again I think this wall is up for an art change. I always sort of liked having Africa above my computer, so I may just swap the two walls out. I’m not sure about the paint here either. The room actually has three colors, a sherbet green, light blue and dark grey. I think maybe I’ll keep the light blue and change the green and grey to a dark teal or blue grey. I think that would set off the rosewood nicely.

Before

Before

After

After

Another former inhabitant of an executive suite, the Nicos Zographos chair is finally happy to have a home, too. I have a plan to change the drapes out for some longer and wider gold drapes of the same material. I think the gold/blue/rosewood palette is going to feel very rich. I may still keep some of the pops of orange and green in the space as accents, but I’ll have to see how that feels in reality.

So there you have it. What do you think, are these pieces worth making my guests sleep on an air mattress for? Hopefully someday I’ll have a space large enough for both an amazing Bond ally office and a guest room so this is really just temporary. But I knew that when someday came, I’d never be able to find this desk and credenza without selling an organ or two.

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2 Comments

  1. Winnie
    Posted August 27, 2016 at 1:38 am | Permalink

    Great to hear from you guys! I’ve been checking in lately in hopes new finds are posted! The desk looks great! And what are you keeping in the little credenza?

    • Austin
      Posted September 2, 2016 at 12:07 am | Permalink

      I’m glad you’ve stayed with us! That credenza is actually enormous and it’s full of office supplies, graphic design references and design samples from my past work. I’ve needed this storage in my office for soooooo long!

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