How to Steampunk an Office…sort of

This isn’t actually a guide to steampunking.  I am learning as I go.  One thing I’m learning is that unless you are handy with a soldering iron, it’s going to cost a bit of money to transform a room into a steampunk palace.  Scott always told me that if he ever had an office, he would want it to be decorated in steampunk.  So, this year for his birthday, that was my gift to him.  Scott was away a bit for work last month, so on his days away, I worked and worked to get this room done.

This room used to be Laelia’s room.  Did she ever sleep in it?  Not one night of sleep happened in this room.  Not one.  A couple naps when she was an infant, but that’s it.  And really, just a couple.  Her clothes have to stay in here for now, but she will probably share a room with her older sisters in the next couple months since the baby is coming shortly after that.  He’ll be in our room with us, just like each of his older sisters were.

Here’s the BEFORE:


The light pink walls changed to green.  The barrel backed couch replaced the crib.  Scott’s office was already in this room, but it needed to take on some of his personality as well.  After all, he spends a lot of time in this room!DSC_0730DSC_0733


Okay, so how to steampunk.  Well, I studied and studied pictures on the web (if you have seen the movie “The Wild, Wild West” with Will Smith, then you probably have a good idea of what steampunk looks like).  I began with a rich green for the walls and then decorated the room in a victorian  vibe–the barrel backed couch, the ornate gold framed mirror, the curtains.  Then, as I noticed from all the bazillions of pictures online, the main part of steampunking is layering in decor featuring lots of metal and gears and rivets.  That kind of thing.  Although sometimes you’ll see a room that looks like it has metal rafters and things like that.  I didn’t go that far, but in retrospect a soft gold for the ceiling would’ve looked fantastic.  Unless the painting fairies come to visit, the ceiling will remain white for now.

I found a fabulous clock on Amazon that brought a good deal of the steampunk vibe in the room.DSC_0332 DSC_0330

Over Laelia’s dresser, I hung an old world map poster–20 cents on Amazon!  I bought a poster sized frame for it at Michael’s.  I also found this fabulous electric lantern (also from Amazon) that I hung over the dresser, using a chain and hook that I already had.  One key in redecorating a room is looking all over your house for things that will go with your theme.  I promise you, most of the time you have a ton of things already that will go perfectly in there and you don’t have to spend a lot of money!  Some more of our already owned items were the chest on the dresser and the old books.DSC_0036

And this gold chair was in my living room, but it looks fab in here!  I traded it for the rocking chair that was in here before and I use it more now than I did when it was in Laelia’s nursery.  Go figure.  The girly, flowery, rug was replaced with a smaller rug that won’t get caught under Scott’s office chair.  It also carries on the Victorian look.DSC_0329

I took the white, plastic faceplates off of the outlets and light switch and sprayed them with a brown primer and lightly sprayed them with a copper spray paint on the edges only to give it an antiqued and even slightly rusted look.  This is a situation where rust can be a bonus or is at least acceptable.  🙂  Ultimately, I would love to add some gears to these guys, but this is perfect for now.DSC_0737

And the last thing I did was refinish this toy chest that was given to us by a neighbor whose son had outgrown it.  I tried to transform it into a steamer trunk kind of thing.  I think I mostly achieved that.  I’ll be sure to show you how I did it soon.  It’s nice storage for Scott’s audio equipment and some books and things.DSC_0328

These changes are just a jumping off point for our steampunk office.  This is a really cool look we can continue to build on.  There are a bunch of pieces I was dying to purchase, but it would’ve been crazy expensive and I’m thankful for willpower when it comes to spending. So for now we have a great start!  Maybe I’ll test the soldering waters and see if I can hack it.  ;DSC_0744


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