We've always had a home office space that hubby and I both use at different times to meet our flexible work needs. But-- when Coronavirus hit we were quickly forced into a situation where both hubby and I had to work from home. He had numerous Zoom calls per day and his needs really required full usage of our home office space. I temporarily set up camp at our dining room table, but I soon found that it was not conducive to a very productive environment with three kids moving about and wanting to eat all day! My brain felt scattered and I really needed a small space to make my own in this environment of uncertainty.
I took this as a perfect opportunity to update a little area of our home to be designated as all mine to really be able to focus on work tasks.
(BELOW) We had this little nook in our master bedroom that had become more of a collect-all for random junk and things that needed to be put away. AND-- we had this TV that hadn't been watched in almost two years. It seemed like a perfect space to create my own little area to work. By shopping my own house and adding a few new pieces I was able to pull off an inspiring WFH space in an afternoon.
BEFORE & AFTER:
Below are some tips to consider when creating a WFH space.
TIP # 1: GET INSPIRED
A happy environment can promote productivity-- so don't just throw some furniture in a space and call it an office. You deserve better than that! Pull together some design elements for your "ideal" office space, and imagine as if you are starting from scratch. This helps you design a space that will be inspiring even if you can't execute all of the details due to space, budget, etc.
My space started with these design elements below:
TIP #2: LIGHTING
Whenever possible choose a space that has natural light or good options for overhead light or lamps in your space. A poorly lit environment will not be conducive to productivity and may cause headaches or fatigue. My space has a ton of natural light on the second floor, so it's bright and cheery during the day.
TIP #3: GO UP AND USE REAL ESTATE ON THE WALL
Use tall bookshelves when possible to help corral your clutter-- and don't forget colorful artwork or bulletin boards that can be both inspiring and/or be functional.
TIP #4: DIY TO SAVE MONEY
Painting or any design element that you can execute or build yourself will always save you money, and a WFH space is a perfect area to try out your DIY skills! I love wallpaper, but due to time and cost I didn't want to go the pasted route with a professional installer. I chose a peel & stick wallpaper that I could install myself in one afternoon.
TIP #5: SHOP YOUR HOUSE
Have lamps, organizing bins, etc. that you aren't using? Shopping your house and/or garage for items that can be used in your new WFH space can save on the budget. I grabbed a floor lamp from the guest bedroom, a pink velvet accent chair from my daughter's room, and artwork from around my house to use in the space.
Then I pulled in clean and sleek furniture pieces from West Elm that I bought years ago and have used in my commercial office space. We loaded up our SUV one afternoon to bring them home-- so no extra spending required there! This allowed me to focus my budget on the wallpaper and the desk chair.
Peel & Stick Wallpaper (use code: JTSTYLE for 15% off sitewide)
Artwork Behind Desk (original, but linked to site)
Artwork on Side Wall:
Some Notes About Peel & Stick Wallpaper:
Peel & stick wallpaper is definitely a way to save money for a project you can do yourself, and I felt like this would be a perfect opportunity to install it in a small space. It's from the Gray Malin Collection, and I love the colors and abstract elements of this pattern. It's priced by the strip and you can use CODE: JTSTYLE for 15% off throughout the site.
TIP: Patience is key with peel & stick paper, and you can pull up and reposition many times. Pull off just the top corner and position pattern before you start pulling the rest of the backing off. Once you get about halfway down the wall, trim the backing off from the section you've already installed as it gets in the way as you work your way down the wall. Use a window washing squeegee to help smooth the bubbles out of the paper. I love Mitchell Black wallpapers as they just slightly overlap to help you line up the pattern more easily. TIP: Busy patterns are much easier to install in my opinion as you can fudge a bit if the seaming is not perfect. The eye will never notice!
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