Office Chandelier and Rewiring Project

Office chandelier.

So this might be a bit technical. If you’re just in it for the pretty, check out this image of the finished product: My new office chandelier!

Office chandelier.


Those are flowers Dale gave me for my birthday that I LOVED. And the print was a Christmas present from etsy! Dale added the hooks for me and I use them for my laptop bags and other stuff.

How we got it to work with the light switch was a bit of a challenge.

How to Rewire a Room

Rewire1We had wire where the ceiling fan used to be. So, for those who would like to know how to rewire a room, instruction are as follows:


Above is a simple explanation of what we started with. Our house did not come with lights connected to a light switch when it comes to the bedrooms so we will have to do this in each of the bedrooms as we remodel.

Here’s Dale’s explanation of the illustration:

The inverted triangle represents “ground” in an electrical circuit. In reality ground is a white wire that runs back to the fuse box, completing the circuit. For visual simplicity it is represented as an inverted triangle.

The hot (black) wire runs from the fuse box to a junction in the closet, from there it’s split four ways:

  • Closet light
  • Ceiling fan (soon to be chandelier!)
  • Light switch (which sends power via an orange wire to 1/2 of outlet 1
  • second half of of Outlet 1, then outlets 2 & 3

This all worked fine if we wanted a ceiling fan operating from a pull string and a lamp plugged into a wall outlet. We didn’t want that. We wanted to have a chandelier controlled by the wall switch.

This illustration shows you what we did:


  • The wire feeding the fan was disconnected from the “hot” wire at the junction box.
  • The orange wire between the switch and 1/2 of outlet 1 was disconnected at both ends and capped.
  • A new wire (yellow) was fed from the junction box to the switch.
  • The yellow wire connects to the switch and is tied to the wire feeding the ceiling light.
  • Outlet 1 has been replaced and now functions like outlets 2 & 3.

Here’s a quick rundown of how we did it:

WE TURNED THE ELECTRICITY OFF. Just to make that clear! And we hooked up the new wires in exactly the same places and in the same ways as the old wires. We were not reinventing anything.

Tools Used:

  • cable snake
  • wire pulling lubricant
  • yellow electrical wire
  • chandelier from Ikea


We pulled the closet light down to access the wires since it serves as the junction box for the room. We then pulled the wires out at the switch itself: rewire4We tried a couple of methods for feeding the wire but ended up using a cable snake to pull the new wiring.


The cable snake worked well and we also used lubricant for the wire (it really helped).


We pushed the cable snake into the switch box end and it came out in the closet, at the junction box. We hooked the new yellow wire onto the cable snake and pulled it through the ceiling to the light switch:

Rewire7And there it is! We felt quite triumphant when it came through. Ha! You can also see in this photo that the orange wire was still attached to the light switch.


Next we had to open up outlet 1.


And the orange wire was also attached to outlet 1.


We capped the orange wire. We could have pulled it out entirely but we figured if, for whatever reason, we wanted to reconfigure in the future we might as well make it easier on ourselves. Rewire12

We capped the orange wire at the light switch and tucked it in the wall. Then we screwed the yellow wire where the orange wire had been. And we also attached the yellow wire to the appropriate spot in the junction box. Voila! Rewire14

Then Dale followed the directions for installing the little chandelier as you would any light fixture.


And carefully disentangled the cardboard and plastic once it was reasonably in place. Rewire16

And that’s how adorable it looks! Can you stand it? Because I can’t! I LOVE IT.

The Home Office

Office chandelier.

For the first six months we owned our house I was self-employed and worked from home. Now that I’m back to work I am only in the office three days a week so we still need a home office for me.

For reference this is the bedroom we started with:


 A basic white room with old blue carpet, sliding closet doors…


First things first: Dale tore up the carpets and refinished them with his friend Mike.

Office-3Once the floors were completed and we moved in, painting commenced! I had it in my head that I needed to paint the ceiling pink–and I love it! And I wanted gray walls. This was the first gray I selected and it was all wrong for me. The pink and the daylight mixed together to create a pale blue tint that I really didn’t like at all! So it was back to the drawing board–and Sherwin-Williams–to try again. Ugh. I hate repainting.


This is not the best image but it gives you an idea of how much darker I decided to go. Office-5

And this is what I ended up with! It looks darker than it is in this picture because the paint was still wet and the daylight was fading…


The next step was converting the old sliding door closet into a shelving area for office supplies and other goodies. It has added scads of much-needed storage (mostly because I’m a pack rat of craft supplies, paper products, and view-master reels).


And here’s the finished product–filled to the brim and not as tidy as it could be, I know. But it’s a start. This holds all of my clippings from my editorial career, all of my favorite books, some craft supplies, all of my scrapbooks, all of my old journals, and an entire shelf of View-Master reels and viewers. Office-8

I love it! I got the desk at Ikea and it was just what I wanted. Soft lines, not too big so it doesn’t dominate the space and not in the corner like I’m stuck in a cubicle. The chair is a lovely white leather knock-off of the famed Eames Management Chair. I LOVE it. Behind the desk is an ugly, cheap old book case that is filled with reference books. I’m sure it will make its way to the garbage eventually! And, in the corner, is an old View-Master projector table that holds a few trinkets and camera supplies.


I got a dresser from Ikea that matches the desk (in terms of finish). Clearly, I haven’t put anything up on the walls yet because I’m still debating art and placement. Dale also put up some hooks for purses and laptop bags to be organized.

Office-10The view from my desk–I have a window and frilly white curtains.

I also plan to get a cushy chair to put up next to the window so I can read and relax in this room as well as work. As of right now I love how my office is coming together (though I do fear that I’ll consider it a Pinterest Hellscape in 2015).


I mean to post this awhile back but since it’s a wintery day, thought I’d share. My co-worker Silvia took this photo from our office window with her iPhone–we love to see the bean in every kind of weather!

New Cabinet

Dale and I are always on the lookout for new and better way to store our crap. And we have a LOT of crap. Enter Craigslist! We were going to buy some new shelves and some new storage containers for our new shelves at Ikea. We figured it would be a better solution than the innumerable small plastic tubs that make up our office. Then Dale found a set of drawers on craigslist that just might fit our weird needs.

And there she is in all her 1970s glory! We plan on giving her a paint job someday–probably when we buy a house or have a specific and exciting plan for our office. Anyway, I have a TON of craft supplies and paper and these very large flat drawers were just the trick–and our printer fits in the bottom and the scanner fits on top! So exciting (you have no idea).

Have a peak inside our drawers…this is the embroidery drawer. See the pretty floss!

A drawer filled with scissors and hole punches. That’s right–I have that many scissors. Don’t judge me!

Jewelry making supplies, beeding and wire. No, I don’t make that much jewelry. Why would that keep me from having supplies? I’m too embarrassed to show you my other drawers–needless to say all the ones that Dale didn’t stake out immediately as off limits were filled to the brim!

Even Dale gets some drawers! So far he’s filled one with paper and one with drafting supplies. Heh. He’s got a few empty drawers to fill.

Happy 4th of July–fireworks pics to come–as well as a bunch more photos from our camping weekend.