The home office

I thought it might be nice to show you where my work gets done. Today I’ll give you a tour of my home office, which is really just a section of my room, in an apartment I share with 3-4 others at any given time.

I do a lot of photography here, particularly for eBay but also for the blog (mainly collections of small items, because the box isn’t too big). Now that I have photo lights in my garage I take a lot of blog photos there as well. I do most of my researching, eBay listing and blogging here, though sometimes I wonder if I should get out of the house more often (ie: by going to a café to work). I use that laser printer (which I found, and still haven’t had to buy ink for) to print off my eBay shipping labels.

(Notable former garbage in this picture: the map, the cat embroidery, the blue cabinet thingy the photo lights sit on, lots of bits and bobs).

Working at home is comfortable, of course, in large part because of Girl Kitty. She was a foster cat along with her brother (Boy Kitty), and both were inherited by my former roommate. Boy Kitty went with someone else, which is fine by me because he was kind of a jerk, and eventually Girl Kitty came to be mine. Anyways, she’s a fun cat with a lot of personality. She’ll rarely sit right next to you, but if there’s a box there she’ll often jump inside. So, some of my best working from home moments involve me sitting on my little couch with a cat in a box beside me.

(Notable former garbage: cat’s box. I got the couch at an estate sale for 40$).

I store a lot of stuff at home. This china cabinet (which I got at the auction house for about 50$) contains a bunch of different junk, including: a tub (the green one) for found e-waste & batteries; small boxes for shipping; business cards for my new business card project; cleaning products (ie: for silver); and miscellaneous finds to be photographed or otherwise dealt with. The drawers below are often in flux, but right now they’re mostly focused on items I’d like to try to sell at a flea market.

The filing cabinet (trash find) contains things that I could / should list on eBay (top drawer), packing supplies (middle drawers), and stuff that could go into future auction lots or flea markets (bottom shelf). I don’t think having the packing materials in there really make much sense, so I’ll probably store them elsewhere at some point.

On top of my filing cabinet were boxes full of sorted Pokemon, Magic, Yu-Gi-Oh, and other playing cards. Stashed under my bed were three big boxes containing many more unsorted, unloved cards. After looking at this photo, I realized that I didn’t really want to see these cards ever again, and decided to bring them to the auction house “as is” in their unsorted state. It’s been almost a year since I found the card hoard, and the upcoming anniversary made it clear in my mind that it was time to move on. I’m still likely to make some decent money from these cards, just not as much as I would have if I had put the many hours into organizing them. Though, upon saying that, that might not even be true. No way to know, I guess.

Otherwise, this spot is often a resting place for miscellaneous trash, items of interest, or packing materials. Now that those Pokemon cards are gone, the potential is limitless.

I found that embroidered serenity prayer in Ville Emard many years ago. I’m not religious or a member of AA, but I think it’s a good message regardless.

Here’s a look inside one the drawers in my blue cabinet. This one’s reserved for small items, most of which could be listed on eBay, or at least require further research. I try to keep all my pens in here, and as you can tell I’m a bit behind in getting them listed. That’s okay though, as they take up next to no space. This is just one of the many drawers & cubby-holes filled with junk at “the office.”

The home office isn’t always this organized, for the record, but sometimes it is. I found that purple chair in TMR this past fall, and the painting is the Edmund Alleyn I found a couple years back. At some point I want to get it restored, but I haven’t gotten around to that yet. On the chair is a Gutenberg word processor manual (trying to figure out what to do with it), and some packages ready to be mailed.

This part is just for decoration. I found that mid-century yellow lamp years ago in NDG. My friend saw a similar one by Douglas Ball and John Berezowski at the Fine Arts Museum in Quebec City last year, and through that I was able to track down one that looks the same via Google (though the link won’t open for whatever reason). So, it’s probably worth a bit of money, but I plan on keeping it. I found that radio around six years ago, and it’s still a favourite of mine. I also really like the preserved (I’m not sure how) piranha, and the four-legged alien looking Beauce plant pot. I enjoy the other things as well, but I’m not as committed to them, and might switch them out at some point.

While on the topic of lamps, I really like this green capiz shell chandelier I found years ago. It needed some fixing up, but I think it was worth the few hours I put into it. I hung it from an old light fixture that probably hasn’t worked in decades anyways.

I try to not collect too much stuff, lest I let the junk take control of my life, but I do like little bottles & tins. Here’s are the ones I have on display in the corner, next to the door.

Well that’s a pretty good look at the home office. At some point, maybe in the spring I’ll show you the state of my garage, which is where I try to leave most of the mess. It’s kind of chaotic, but it’s an ordered chaos that makes sense in my head.

It’s very cold today, so this is the second Friday in a row that I’ve skipped due to weather. I would have gone out if I have an interesting spot to check on, but I haven’t had much luck on my Friday runs recently anyways. Most of my good fortune this week came from Pointe St-Charles of all places – I’ll show you those finds at some point soon.


1. Facebook page
2. My eBay listings, Sign up for eBay, Search for something you want / research something you have (I’m a member of the eBay Partner Network so I make a bit of money if you buy things [even if they’re not mine] or sign up for an account via these links)
3. Help me pay off student loan debt / Contribute to the blog
4. Follow me on Instagram
5. Email: – note that it might take me some time to reply, and that I am unlikely to be able to fulfill requests for items

23 thoughts on “The home office”

  1. Thanks for sharing Martin! Interesting collections and well organized. Love the curio cabinet. True, it’s cold today but the sun is great..makes it feel less cold. Enjoy your day off. Happy Valentines Day! You are loved by all your fans 🙂

  2. The chandelier is divine. Hopefully your roommates don’t mind the ever rotating “stuff” you bring home!

  3. I agree with the above comment. Thank you for giving us a glimpse behind the scenes. I love this sentence in particular: “I use that laser printer (which I found, and still haven’t had to buy ink for) to print off my eBay shipping labels.” Hurrah that some of the things you find can become a useful and/or aesthetically pleasing part of your daily life! I am also happy to see the nice floors and architectural details in your apartment. Your frugal, resourceful, hard-working life with box-loving Girl Kitty continues to inspire me (and many others!) around the blog-o-sphere.

  4. You sure are resourceful … I do much the same but I pay a little bit of cash for my stuff . I buy it at the main Rainesance wharehouse and sell it for a little profit . Thank you for all the great ideas ,photos and the Office Tour . Rummage on ! 🙂

  5. Just because a space may look chaotic to some doesn’t mean it’s actually chaotic. My husband and I both tend to accumulate “piles” rather than filing stuff, but we know where everything is within those piles. Whatever works for the individual is what he or she should do. You’ve made good use of every bit of storage you have.

    Kitties do love their boxes! And their people. Girl Kitty has everything she needs.

  6. Happy Valentine’s Day Martin. I always wait eagerly for your posts. I wish you would consider making a You Tube channel. It would be of great interest to all your current followers and would bring in many more so that eventually you could make a decent income from it..

    1. Thanks, I wouldn’t have thought to do that otherwise. They have it listed as a table lamp, but I think it was made to hang. But they don’t seem to know much about it anyways. Just knowing who designed it is good, though.

  7. Hi Martin, thanks for the tour, and for all you do. I know all too well about loving certain things enough to keep them no matter what, and liking things just long enough to enjoy them for a while. Here’s wishing you a very happy Valentine’s Day.

    Please set any Euro and British coins aside for me … I will happily buy them from you in the Spring some time.

  8. I absolutely loved, and thoroughly enjoyed, this “different” sort of post! And it was so captivatingly written.
    For my money, this was as good a tour as any through an historic building or posh castle. (And I’ve done a few of those.) 🙂

  9. What an enchanting way to work—at home with a cat by your side! Girl Kitty is beautiful. Thank you for the tour.

  10. Everything you write about is interesting and entertaining. Hope you don’t tire of posting anytime soon. Thank you!

  11. Thanks for the tour! Love the Douglas Ball acrylic lamp, covet it. Please post the results of the Inuit auction if/when you think of it – good luck.

  12. Your home office is very organized and interesting.You must hang on to many of these things fot yourself.I love the piranha you have there.Besides making money from your sales,you could also write part time for newspapers,online journals and magazines and make some money as a writer.You have very good writing skills.

  13. Thanks for sharing. I like seeing how you make the magic happen. :). Also, love the Cat in a Box and green chandelier…and wood floors and cool built-ins. I have never seen one of those white pop-up photo box thingys. Thanks for the tips. I need to go list some things now. Thanks for the inspiration, as always.

  14. Beautiful blog.The selection of knick-knacks in your dwelling is very interesting.Just to let you know that a few reporters at Public Radio International in Boston subscribe to your blog.I hope American media outlets approach you for interviews.Also in the press section of your blog you have not included the article written regarding your blog ,on the website Montréal blog.

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