When most people think of working from home, they imagine setting up a computer and a phone in one of their house’s spare rooms. Such an office is easy to put in place and allows you to take advantage of household comforts during work. Thus the vast majority of professionals who work from home use something like this arrangement.
For one intrepid professional, however, a spare room in their house would not satisfy her work needs. Determined to cordon off a separate space devoted to business, she built an office in the most unlikely of places: a hayloft. Their project serves as a testament to all who hope to create a business-friendly environment.
Buying A Barn
The project began when this professional bought a new property, which came with a barn.
Surmising The Space
The first step in using the property was to examine its condition and previous improvements.
The new owner had to clean away debris, animal droppings, and other refuse that had accumulated.
A Spotless Space
After some hard work and elbow grease, the barn was clean enough to use.
Setting Up The Space
With the interior completely clean, she began setting up for a renovation.
At this point, the owner drew up comprehensive plans for how she would renovate the property.
The office would take advantage of all the building’s features, including a cupola that a previous owner added.
Strengthening The Stairs
The existing stair structure was weak, so she reinforced it for safety.
The new structure would prevent the stairs from collapsing under the weight of heavy equipment.
Shoring Up The Siding
The exterior siding was weak, so she removed it, added sheathing and a wrap, and put it back on.
To protect the new office from the area’s harsh weather, the owner added new windows.
She took advantage of a header that already stood in the barn’s entrance.
She attached the new sheathing in stages so that the snow would not disrupt the project.
During this stage, she placed flashing over the rim board for extra protection.
Placing With Pulleys
To install the main window, she used a system of pulleys and ropes.
Finishing This Feature
With the wrap and sheathing in place, she put the siding back on in the opposite direction.
At the end of this process, the barn was better prepared for the elements.
Tuning The Trim
She added trim to the windows for style and function.
On the other side, the barn’s structure had been more severely affected by weathering.
Viewing the work from the inside allowed the owner to gauge how each feature would contribute to her intended look.
Over the course of several days, the owner made similar changes to the more weathered side of the barn.
In order to reinforce the building’s cupola, the owner had to improve its metal flashing.
Every new feature of the roof had to be carefully precut before it was brought up.
With the reinforcements in place, the cupola would provide a stable vantage point.
Instead of siphoning electricity from the house, she gave the barn a separate supply.
The electricians installed a second wire so that the owner would be able to build and power a second structure.
The new power setup would allow this innovative professional to perform a range of business functions.
The owner built an extra wall to divide the aisle from the entrance.
She had to refine the barn’s shingles in order to incorporate a soffit.
With the soffit complete, the entrance to the barn would have ideal lighting.
Salvaging The Side
The barn’s side had been seriously damaged by weathering, requiring comprehensive repairs.
To reinforce the sides, she had to take down large portions of the wall, leaving the building temporarily exposed.
The materials she replaced the wall with, however, were clearly stronger and hardier.
The final soffits were made of aluminum.
Before moving on to further interior improvements, the owner took a final look at the exterior, making sure everything was ready.
The owner laid most of the wiring herself, though she relied on electricians for the electric panel.
She compared the original ladder to the staircase, surmising which was better for reaching the loft.
She opted for the stairs, but added railings to make them safer.
The owner took care to view the stairs from every angle, making sure they were safe.
The next step was to frame a space for the bathroom, an essential feature in any office. Think you could tackle framing a new bathroom?
The owner included chutes to improve ventilation inside the barn.
To make an HVAC system viable, the owner had to painstakingly insulate the barn.
Foam insulation would provide an effective barrier against heat transfer that could be installed flexibly.
Observing The Overhang
At first, the insulation hung over the barn, which was unsightly.
As unsightly as it may have been, the insulation would provide valuable protection while enhancing energy efficiency.
A Look At The Laundry Room
In addition to an office, the barn would also include a laundry room.
The owner added a vapor barrier to the top of the barn.
While making other improvements, the owner placed a film over the foam insulation to prevent it from being disrupted.
The next step was to install drywall in the barn.
Working On The Wall
The owner ordered a large supply of drywall to give herself flexibility.
Disguised With Drywall
Once the drywall was in place, the foam was not visible and the barn looked completely different.
Even at this point, the interior looked like a professional workspace.
The owner obtained some old-fashioned doors, which she would salvage and restore.
The owner realized that she could use the room beneath these stairs as a photographic darkroom.
The owner added an extra door so that she could use the area behind for storage.
She completed mudding quickly, making the room ready for further improvements.
Reviewing The Room
The owner took another look at the room, making sure everything else was ready for the next stage.
She realized that the floor had no insulation, so she added a layer of styrofoam underneath.
The Power Of Pine
Under the styrofoam, she put a layer of pine to preserve the interior aesthetic.
Back To The Barn Look
Though the second floor looked like a professional workspace, the bottom one would keep its traditional barn appearance.
23. Chimney Construction
She added a chimney to the barn for safe, efficient heating.
22. Looking For Lights
The next step was to obtain lights to match the overall appearance.
Before painting the walls, she laid down plastic to protect the floor.
She installed tile flooring in the bathroom and main entryway.
With the paint in place, the room now looked like a finished office.
The cupola now functioned as a skylight, saving energy on daytime lighting.
Luxurious Nightime Lighting
For evenings, she installed dim interior lighting to provide an elegant, luxurious air.
Furnishing A Fan
Ventilation was crucial in a room this big, so she added an overhead fan.
To build cabinets, she enlisted the aid of her carpentry-savvy father.
Cabinets & Counter
The completed cabinets would highlight the concrete counter.
She also made the countertops themselves, using concrete for both the kitchen and bathroom.
For a cleaner aesthetic, she used MDF on the stairs.
She weatherproofed the stairs with a few layers of Varithane.
Done With The Doors
By this point, she’d finished salvaging the recycled doors.
The bathroom was also complete, providing a clean, comfortable space.
She mounted guitars and added a carpet to accentuate the space.
She included a Waterford stove to add old-fashioned charm.
This piece of artwork doubled as an electric panel cover.
She then put the finishing touches on her darkroom.
This involved adding extra shelves to take advantage of the high ceiling.
The darkroom would be effectively separated from the rest of the office
The final office left nothing to be desired.
Who wouldn’t want to work here?
Thanks for enjoying this article! Are you a skilled DIYer that wants to have your article featured? Send an email to [email protected] with your images and story and one of our team members will get back to you!