How to create an alcove office

Follow this step-by-step guide to creating a home office desk area from an awkward alcove space

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Struggling to find a space to fit a desk without taking over a whole room? With a little bit of time and imagination, you can turn a small space into a practical working area.

An alcove office is a practical and efficient solution for busy households, professionals working from home or children needing to catch up on homework. It makes clever use out of an awkward space and creates extra storage for all your items.

List of materials

materials for home office alcove diy

For the table:

  • 1 x desk board (19mm medium-density fiberboard)
  • 1 x narrow support strip for the back (cut to the same length as the desk board)
  • 2 x narrow support strips for the sides (cut slightly smaller than the width of the desk board)

For the shelving:

  • 2 shelf boards (19mm medium-density fiberboard)
  • 2 x narrow support strips for the back (cut to the same length of the shelf board)
  • 4 x strips for the sides (cut slightly smaller than the width of the shelves)
  • 23 x screws, 6 x 80 mm
  • 23 x screw anchors, 8 mm (depending on the structure of the wall)
  • 8 mm drill bit (depending on the structure of the wall)
  • 6 mm drill bit (for wood)

Recommended Tools:

  • Bosch PLR 50 C (Quick calculation of distances, areas and volumes)
  • Bosch Uneo Maxx (Powerful ability to hammer, drive screws and drill into any surface)
  • Bosch PMD 10 (Easy to use and detects common materials)

Time Required:

1.5 hours

Step 1

Measuring walls

To ensure that your desk slots perfectly in the alcove, the first thing you must do is carefully measure the space. Taking time at this stage to make sure everything is just right will make your job a lot easier and quicker. A digital laser measure, such as the Bosch PLR 50 C, is the most precise way to do this as it is quick and guarantees accuracy first time.

Position the PLR 50 C with the base of the tool flat against a side wall and measure the width of the alcove, then measure the depth. The strips of MDF board for the table and the shelves will then need to be cut slightly smaller than these measurements – this can be done for you at a local hardware store.

Step 2

check pipes cables

Before you fit anything in the alcove it is best to check for pipes or cables which may be hidden behind the walls. The best way to do this is by sweeping a detection tool, such as the Bosch PMD 10, across your walls. With its high level of reliability and precision, the PMD 10 will ensure that all common materials are detected and that you understand where is safe to drill.

Once you are sure that the wall is safe to drill through you can mark the height of where you would like the desk top and shelves to sit. Position the support strips at the sides and back of the alcove at the desired heights. Ensure that they are all level by using the incline measurement function on the Bosch PLR 50 C.

Step 3

drilling wall

Use a 6 mm drill bit for wood to drill the fixing holes into the strips. We recommend using the Bosch Uneo Maxx cordless rotary hammer, which you can use as an electric hammer, drill and screwdriver.

Drill three fixing holes in each of the long strips (roughly 5 cm from the left-hand edge, in the center, and 5 cm from the right-hand edge) and two holes in each of the short strips (roughly 5 cm from the left-hand edge and 5 cm from the right-hand edge). Then use a pen to mark the position of the fixing holes on the wall.

Now use the 8 mm drill bit and the hammer function on the Bosch Uneo Maxx to make clean, precise holes. Then place a screw anchor in each hole to provide a secure hold.

Step 4

screwdriving function wall

Now attach the strips to the wall. Switch the tool to the screwdriving function, lay the strips against the wall and screw them firmly in place.

Step 5

fitting shelf

Once you’ve attached the side strips securely to the wall, all that’s left to do is position the desk board and shelves on top of them. You can also add your personal style by painting the shelves a bright colour.

home office alcove diy

Tip: If you’ve already got a desk, you could simply turn your alcove into a built-in shelving unit to give you extra storage space for keeping your home office supplies, or kitchenware in order, should your alcove be in your cooking or dining space.