Cabinet Becomes Hideaway Office

Our hive has three bedrooms. The master, along with two other teeny ones currently awaiting revamps – one of which is more of a glorified cupboard (okay, so I’m exaggerating slightly though you get my drift, they are SMALL).

So anyway, the slightly less small of the two currently holds, amongst many other things, this big free standing TV cabinet (found on eBay for around $100).

Because instead of just a neat little laptop we have a hulking great computer with a massive monitor, printer, sound system, hard-drive back-up, broadband modem, etc, etc, there are a tonne of power cords and lots of poxy black plastic I’d rather hide away than have on show so here’s what’s actually living in that TV cabinet.

I know, I know, not too pretty at the moment – see what I mean about the cords? – though I do have beautification plans.

We’ve been using the computer like this for a while now, though to be honest, not very comfortably. The shelf heights are a bit awkward so you need to lean right over to reach the keyboard and mouse.

Well, I’m pleased to say that’s finally changed thanks to the installation of this rolling shelf.

Again, still awaiting beautification though currently practical if nothing else!

I’ve always found purpose-built computer cabinets can be pricey (and usually lacking in character) so here’s a quick little tute covering the basics of how you can turn any cupboard/cabinet/robe/closet into your own mini hide-away office.

Step 1
Find a cupboard. Almost anything will do. Just make sure it’s big enough to house all your bits and pieces and really deep if you also want to leave a chair hidden in it. Like I already mentioned, my cupboard was originally a TV cabinet I bought off eBay for around $100.

Step 2
Install or remove fittings as required. I was lucky to already have some shelves in place though it’s easy enough to add your own if need be.

Step 3
Install your keyboard shelf. Usually this would be hidden under the monitor shelf though based on the height of the existing shelf in my cupboard it needed to sit on top.

Because my cupboard has recessed sides, I first screwed (counter-sunk) and glued in some timber spacers.

Next I attached the exterior drawer slides.

These are just standard roller drawer brackets you can buy from the hardware store for around $10 a pair.

I then measured the depth, length and height my keyboard shelf needed to be and had a piece of MDF cut to size at the hardware store. I attached my MDF to the interior drawer slides by screwing it in from the bottom. To finish I simply inserted the shelf inside the exterior brackets.

YAY!!! We can finally comfortably reach the components!

Step 4
Make your new home office beautiful (and user-friendly :-)

Okay, I already admitted I’m still yet to complete this step though I do have some plans.


  1. Catherine says:

    Perfect!! A very natty solution to solve your problem and I can’t wait to see what you do to beautify your space…I love all the beautiful inspiration images. Just gorgeous.



  2. Mara says:

    Fantastic job!!! Now we want to see the decorations!!!

  3. Jo says:

    Love this idea and have always wanted one in our home. Can’t wait to see how you decorate this beauty.


  4. Deanne says:

    Your computer cupboard looks great!

    we used to have a cupboard for our computer made from an old wardrobe, its now my sewing cupboard, since an extension gave us a study. Our TV also has its own cupboard made from a $20 wardrobe picked up at a garage sale.

  5. marian says:

    What a neat solution! You should see it here, cables everywhere… hate it! But hubby doesn’t mind it and doesn’t feel the need of hiding a wonderful immediately reachable computer right in the living room. Why make it all so difficult he’d say… I’m with you, now I have to convince my husband, mmm.

  6. michelle says:

    I have always liked those! Great job!!

  7. Such a great idea! I have to redo our home office and I will definitely be using some of these ideas! Thanks for sharing!


  8. NanaDiana says:

    Great idea! I LOVE IT! Hugs-Diana

  9. that is great! i can’t wait to see what you do to pretty it up!

  10. Roberta says:

    your image of the woman on the phone in the turquoise chair is from an older issue of Lowe’s Creative Ideas magazine. I only know this b/c i tore it out of the magazine myself to save in my inspiration file! Great minds think alike. ;) Love all of the ideas you posted.

  11. Katie says:

    Oh Kristine! When I read this post I felt my mouth watering with all those great images and ideas!!!

  12. Just Martha says:

    Yep – next time a computer ‘nook/cupboard’ for me…

  13. Sarah B says:

    What a fabulous setup! I agree, computers are not great looking so hiding them away is a great idea. Isn’t that blue example so pretty!

  14. mydesignchic says:

    Love what you did…it looks amazing!!

  15. Rene' says:

    Awesome idea!! Love how you added the pull out shelf!

  16. Shaunna says:

    Gorgeous cabinet and brilliant space now! love it! -shaunna :)

  17. Grrr to wires! They’re the bane of my interior life!!

    I like this solution. We’ve done something pretty simialar with our video, cable box, etc….

  18. annie says:

    I am so happy to have all these photos in one place. I have an armoir that I have sort of made into my home office and i keep intending to do a post…but not until it looks a little more like something in one of these photos.

  19. Jackie says:

    Love what you have done here, I need something like this so badly. I live in a small weatherboard cottage and we have a “sunroom” at the front of the house, it’s the first room you walk into when you enter the house it’s also my office. I hate it the desk, computer, printer fax etc (you get the picture lol)always look so untidy, it drives me insane. This is something Ive been thinking about doing for quiet sometime or get a laptop which Im not sure I want to do lol. Thanks for the inspiration.

  20. AtOneWithHim says:

    did you do the finish? i have a huge chunky pie farm table that needs some new character… instead of the yellowy thing its got going on.

  21. Anonymous says:

    Love this! We recently purchased a computer armorie off of Craigs List… now I just need to organize it! Can’t wait to see more of your projects :)


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