Have an extra bedroom in the home or maybe a corner that could use a little love? Why not create a home office space to pay the bills, keep a schedule, journal or even have an area where kids can do their homework.
After Superstorm Sandy destroyed our home in October 2012, I had to recreate my home office space to continue to run Stylish Stagers, Inc. As I stood in the room that was ripped down to the studs I knew that I wanted to have multi-work spaces in the room and that I wanted to use the vertical space of the room to keep important papers up above away from the floor incase of another flood.
Prior to the storm my office was ripped from the pages of Pottery Barn with blue jean walls, dark wood furniture and one desk that sat in the center of the room. So, since I had the opportunity to change things up I decided to paint it a bright yellow, used Elfa shelving from The Container Store to build our desks and shelving and repurposed two old dining chairs into funky office chairs. Here is our new office, where I currently bring you our voice, in fact I’m sitting in that chair on the left in the photo right now writing this.
One of my biggest pet peeves is when homeowners have an office in their home, but it looks more like a corporate headquarters and an afterthought than a place you’d want to spend time in. Here are five tips to consider when trying to create a home office with some personality that reflects the rest of the home.
Home Office Tip # 1: Enough Space
Tight on floor space? No worries. Opt for a sleek stand near the door. It’s perfect for sorting mail or paying bills before you head out. Or how about turning a closet into an office space. Try removing the closet door and replacing it with a curtain to close when you want to leave work behind. You can even create a work space in a hallway, replace a nightstand with a writing table or add a command center in your kitchen to take care of daily paperwork and scheduling.
Home Office Tip # 2: Multi-Functional Furniture
Choose furniture with a purpose. No one wants to see stacks of paperwork all over their house or office equipment for that matter. If you have a small area you want a flexible workspace — like a secretary desk that you can close and an upholstered chair that you can use elsewhere for extra seating for dinner guests. Make your desk a statement piece. Then use a cabinet to house a printer, sliding trays for office supplies.
Home Office Tip # 3: Contain Your Stuff
Store all your paperwork and office supplies in containers, drawers, baskets and bins. Putting this out of sight will give your office a decluttered look. The bins in my office and pictured below are from The Container Store. You can use binders with different sections to organize life’s paperwork and create a mail center to easily stay on top of important items that must be dealt with immediately. Also, consider color-coding your file cabinets and books to add a stunning design element while giving your space a clutter-free, organized look. Don’t forget to label everything so other family members know where to put items back.
Home Office Tip # 4: Use a Repeating Color
Home Office Tip # 5: Accessorize
Think about your home office as you would any room when decorating. Is there a theme you’re looking to portray? If so then add that theme with artwork and items to display on a book shelf. Make sure to add a desk lamp, have some organic accessories like a pyrite paperweight and add something personal to inspire you to continue to conquer your goals.
There are so many options out there to surround yourself with happiness while at work, so don’t settle for a boring, old, corporate home office. Let me know in the comment section below how you plan on dressing up your home office. I’d love to hear from you!