How To...Create a Mobile Office

How To...Create a Mobile Office

Feb 12, 2008

We saw this idea over on DIY Ideas and thought about how the changing table could also serve as a portable office--wireless networking and printing, a place to stash supplies and files, and the ability to roll it away when you don't need it.

A rolling cart could be picked up pretty easily second hand, and with a fresh coat of paint and some supplies, it's ready to mobilize.

On DIY are instructions for painting the piece with metallic paint to give it a more modern finish. To make it easily portable, add casters to the bottom of the legs. Wheels are available at Ikea or your Home Depot.

Next comes the artistic part: the pieces of art are made by printing an image on a clear sticker and then applying the image to a piece of corrugated plastic cardboard. We like that the plastic cardboard keeps the art "light on its feet," in the same style as the paint job. These panels also hide some of the visual busy-ness and give you a place to stash anything you don't want people to easily see. Attach the art with finishing screws; consider painting them to match the desk or the background of your art.

One popular wireless hub is the Apple Airport Extreme (or the less expensive Express--and both work for PCs, too), There are other options out there that allow you to also keep external hard drives and printer easily connected as well as accessible.

A wireless hub still needs power, and if you're wanting to store your wireless router on it as well, consideration must be made for a power source and a cable/telephone line to connect to the cart's components. If you want to streamline the look even further, use a Forstner bit or a spade bit to cut holes near a corner and use ties to hold the cords to the leg of the desk.

After you've determined the optimal position of your electronics, you can then find homes for the non-electronic items. [The reason for setting up the electronics first is to optimize cord control first, though consideration should be made for other items to go on the desk if you have options.]

We gathered a few suggestions for decorative accessories for ways to jazz up the mobile office and hopefully keep you motivated to maintain the mobile office, these are from See Jane Work:

The magnetic, stainless container mounting strip could easily be mounted to a leg with a few screws to create more vertical storage space. Portable filing containers make it easy to stash papers you need access to on a lower shelf, and then pull out when you need them.

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