Window Desk Ideas

By Kate Riley December 7, 2017

I know it’s the holiday season but I can’t help but think ahead because with this next project I get a lot of practicality. Do you remember the old study I designed for the kids five years ago when they were in elementary school? It was a fantastic space for many years but since I’ll soon have one kid in high school and one in junior high, the space needs to grow up just like they have.

I want to install a built-in desk under the window as a place for homework and a shared computer. Here’s the space as it is now, you can see I never bothered to touch up the paint behind that bench I made for them under the window. :)


When we refinished the floors we removed all the old furniture and shelving and it’s sat vacant for a few months. This space is the perfect spot to recreate a more sophisticated den for study. Because it’s small and narrow I envision breaking it up into two smaller zones with a desk under the window and a sitting area on the other end of the room (not shown).

My first focus is that desk under the window with storage above and below and these window desks are great inspiration. In my personal home office, my desk is under a window and I find it helpful for my productivity, the light that streams in and the ability to glance outside and see what the birds are up to.


artisan signature homes


cottages & gardens


kelly deck


jessica helgerson


jill greaves


hazel and brown


avenue lifestyle


wb builders


o’hara interiors

Built ins are fab, but in case I ever need to rework this space, I’m going to make the desk only a semi permanent fixture. My idea is to install two freestanding white cabinet bases with drawers underneath on each side of the window. On top I’ll install a wood top that stretches the width of the space.

I’m working up plans in the next week, and hoping to complete the desk project in January for the kids to use for their homework. Of course I’ll share it when complete!


DIY Lighted Wood Bead Garland

By Kate Riley December 4, 2017

Season’s greetings friends! Yesterday I worked up a little DIY lighted wood bead garland while I watched a movie relaxing in my family room. I like to make garlands at Christmastime while I sit fireside, it’s how I combine creativity with relaxation.

Last year I made a paper leaf garland and the year before a gemstone garland and the year before a sparkle confetti garland. This year I combined copper LED lights with wood beads to create a simple beaded garland.




Copper wire LED string lights are available in a lot of stores that sell holiday decor but I bought my remote control battery operated strand for $10 bucks on Amazon. You can find a lot of varieties of wood beads at craft stores like Michaels but I purchased my 9/16” oval beads online. I bought 3 bags of 100 but ended up with a lot of extras, so I think you could recreate this with just two bags of 100 oval beads. Or mix up bead sizes, that would be interesting too! A light strand and wood beads are the only two supplies you really need.

The beads’ opening are large enough to slide over the copper wire and the mini light. After I unwound the entire strand, I strung the beads four at a time.





As you create the garland, and to keep the beads from sliding up and down, simply bend the copper at each light to form a T shape, this exposes the small light and also stabilizes the beads.



It doesn’t take long to create, the whole project took me about 90 minutes, the perfect length for watching a movie. :)



My strand came with a tiny remote that changes the way the lights blink when activated.





If you want to add a bit more bling, use a large circle punch and with metallic foil paper create shiny circles. Use a regular hole punch to create a smaller hole, then scissors to snip an opening on the side of that smaller hole (like a door hanger), then adhere them to the lighted bead garland.






This method is an easy simple way to embellish a set of inexpensive copper LED lights with wood beads.



P.S. The decorative birch tree shown is the one I mentioned in the first paragraph in this post.