Monday, August 25, 2014

Teacher Lounge Makeover

This past summer has gone by so fast.  It is hard to believe that Calgary school doors open in less than a week and a half.  During the past school year, I was blessed to meet two amazing moms and friends, Heather and Jennifer.  We came to realize through various volunteer activities that we work very well together and play off each others creativity.  We met while planning and organizing our schools 10 year anniversary and we came up with a plan to makeover the teacher's lounge.  This area is used by the teachers, staff and parent network for meals, breaks and meetings, as well as one-on-one learning with select students.  Our wonderful and amazing Head of School learned of our plan and was kind enough to provide us a budget help with the makeover.  Let me show you what we did…



The following pictures are the teacher lounge/staff room before the makeover.  Note the dated paint job and general clutter that had developed over the years.  The mismatched chairs contributed to the overall busy theme of the room.  The booth cushions were covered in dated fabric which was difficult to clean and maintain.

The kitchen area was a combination of mismatched shelving and clutter.  The microwaves sat on the bar for years and the use of space was not being utilized to its potential.

Here is a closer view of the kitchen area.  


Yes, my friends…this is the same space!  Can you believe it?  One of the first things that needs to be done before a makeover can begin is to remove everything out of the room.  We started by taking off all of the cushions in the booth areas, removing all of the mismatched chairs and taking everything out of the kitchen including all of the shelving.   The painters arrived in July to paint the entire room.  We settled on a grey, white and yellow theme.  Not only are these colours beautiful and easy on the eye, they are very gender neutral.  Just repainting the room made a big difference in the space before any decorating even started.  I will post more pictures this week on how the space came together, but today I wanted to focus on the before and after pictures and how beautiful the space is now.

This is the space as soon as you walk thru the double doors.  The teachers are now greeted with a beautiful table with 16 matching chairs from IKEA.

The microwave was removed from the bar is now centrally located on its own table.  The table includes extra storage for kitchen items and recycled magazines for the teachers to enjoy during break time.  The wall space surrounding the microwave hangs inspirational quotes that will inspire everyone that reads them.  The clock was relocated to finish off the wall collage.

We tried to reuse and recycle what we could in the space.  This poster frame for instance is one of the examples.  We framed fabric and supplied the teachers with dry erase markers and erasers.  This board can now be used by the teachers to write messages or simply to wish someone a happy birthday or write a quote of the day.

Trying to find tablecloths to cover this large of a table was hard, so the next best thing was to place runners and vinyl place mats down the entire length of the table.  Along the runners are items they would need while eating lunch such as napkins, salt and pepper.

Wood letters were painted white and hung on the wall surrounded by group photos of the teachers from the past couple of years.  Our goal with this space is to keep adding pictures of the teachers as the year goes along.  After all, this is the teacher lounge and we really wanted this space to be a personal reflection of them.

The back cushions were covered in a grey and yellow fabric and a dark grey leather for the bottom.  The leather is an easy clean up for spills and it looks good too.

Bar stools were added to the bar and this space can now be used as a place to eat or grab a quick cup of coffee and visit.  

All of the shelving before was torn down to make way for these cabinets and bookcases from IKEA.  We chose this unit not only because it was pretty but it served as a functional area too.  This unit provides them with drawer space that the kitchen didn't have earlier.  Utensils, dish towels, and pantry items can now be tucked away and hidden.

This area to the left of the unit can be used for food preparation.  Everything they need now is right in this little area.  From cutting boards to knives, we have it covered.

The bookcase in the center of the unit provided a space for some decorative touches.  Everything from the lemons to the straws to the little canisters were great ways to brighten up the area.

In the kitchen area is a small coffee bar.  Everything they need to make a cup of coffee or tea is right at their fingertips.  Small details like this make a big difference and adds a personal touch to the space.

The existing bulletin board was covered in a coordinating fabric.  The school calendar was also frame and placed next to the board.  Details like this just finish off the space.

It was so much fun to create a new lounge area for our amazing teachers at our school.  With that being said, I can't just post pictures of the amazing space without posting pictures of the three of us.  We put our heart and soul into making this space a place where teachers, administration, parents, visitors and students would want to come into and feel welcome.  We know that it will be enjoyed for many years to come.  

Thank you Heather and Jennifer for joining me on this amazing makeover journey.  It was full of hard work, a lot of shopping, assembling furniture but most importantly we laughed a lot.  

Also, a SPECIAL THANK YOU to Mr. Richard and Mr. Daniel for being there to assist us when we needed you.  Your help is greatly appreciated!!!

Heather, Me and Jennifer

I will be posting more about the space in a couple of days with more details on specifics of the space and decor….
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