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My New Top of the World Office Tree House in Hope

Jan 21, 2012 | From the kitchen of Rose

My office in Hope was a 6 foot deep space at the end of a narrow cat walk. If I had gained 5 pounds I would no longer have been able to squeeze into the space between the back of my desk chair and the front of my desk. It never seemed like a good time to commit to construction but this summer, in between book projects, it seemed like it was now or never.

My friend Patty Maertons asked her husband Edgar for a recommendation as he is the local dry wall expert. He suggested Chris Smigel, saying everyone has wonderful things to say about him. Now I know why! Not only did he go above and beyond my expectations, he and his team cleaned up so thoroughly every Friday that when we arrived for the weekend it was almost as though no one had been there. And how exciting it was each week to see the latest transformations. (It was Chris who recommended the delightful architect Art Demarest.)

Another friend, Margaret Kurzman, who lives in nearby Blairstown and also New York City, and has had vast professional experience in renovations, offered excellent advice and moral support. No matter how wonderful the contractor, having your home "invaded" has to be one of life's most unsettling experiences.

There are always new decisions that have to be made along the way and plans that don't work out quite as expected but the only real drama was being awakened one night by not one but two bats that had made their way into the house and into the bedroom! Was I hysterical? Of course--I'm still somewhat of a city girl when it comes to things like that but I've been working on myself to think of them as my friends as they are known to eat mosquitoes and hopefully their taste will turn to stink bugs as well!

I may have lost most of the summer being so involved in the renovation but it was worth it. The new office is truly paradise.

Here are a few before and after photos.

Office-1.jpg

Extending the office 20 feet over the porch turned out to require hand drilling into the boulders to create secure footings. The area was too small to bring in heavy machinery so this took longer than a day and much effort.

Office-2.jpg

We hadn't planned for a lofted ceiling but when I saw the framing I fell in love with the feeling of airy spaciousness. Chris said he knew when I saw it I'd feel that way and he agreed. He made it happen.

Office-3.JPG

The completed office.

Office-4.JPG

Found the perfect fan out of 100's on line.

Comments

Open spaces help with creativity. You have the perfect spot.

REPLY

jeanne, how ironic that i worked as a medical secretary to end up making wedding cakes and you sort of the reverse!

thank you everyone for your comments and esther, so much though went into this office as i hope to be living and working in it for many many more years!

REPLY

Esther B. Mozo
Esther B. Mozo
02/ 1/2012 06:52 PM

I love your new office! It's the right size and I like the way your computer terminal is facing a wall to avoid glare, and yet you are surrounded by windows on both sides. I also like how you kept your bookcases within arm's reach from the desk. If I had to make a home office, I hope you won't mind if I copied your office. It's really great. Congratulations!

REPLY

Thanks so much for sharing your new office space with 'us'. I've been a fan of yours forever! I sold wedding cakes to earn my way through Nursing school and your "White Velvet Cake" was always a HIT!

REPLY

I love it Rose! It is just perfect!

REPLY

What a lovely space for creativity. Thanks for sharing with us both places where the magic happens--your new kitchen and now the new office. I think both look incredible!

REPLY

That looks like a dream come true! It is a dream of mine, as well. Wishing you many hours of bliss and much inspiration. I know we will all reap the benefits through your work!

REPLY

thanks julie! it certainly helps to have a peaceful environment when putting together everything i know about cakes, pies, pastry, cookies, and bread! A lot better than hearing the constant stream of sirens on houston street during the week in NY! when i woke up this morning to the snow i found myself wishing i were in hope this weekend because it would be so beautiful. luckily elliott is from toronto and knows how to drive on snow and ice. getting into our drive can be an iffy experience.

REPLY

Congratulations! It does look like a beautiful tree house, serene and light-filled. It'll be interesting to see if your next book reflects the peaceful surroundings :)

REPLY

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