Nothing quite like a new year to kick you into ~finally~ setting up your home office! The catch is that, typically, a perfect place in your home for an office doesn’t always jump out immediately. The dream would be to have a fully fleshed out room with gorgeous built-ins for all of your important documents, a center-standing desk with the cords somehow perfectly hidden, and the desk styled and organized to perfection with a comfy yet chic chair that makes you feel like a queen. While you might not have a full room for an office or the room you have has an odd layout and the desk never seems to make sense — the beauty of a home office is the ability to get funky with it to match your needs. To get you started we rounded up some guidelines, tips, and tricks of the trade and inspiration to send you on your way
1. Keep It Inspiring
What inspires you? To some it’s gorgeous colors and bright wallpapers, to others it’s a perfect organization, some people work best surrounded by beautiful art, and there is a whole group of people who just swell with inspiration looking at a display of books. Take notes on what gets you jazzed and fill your office with it. Many times a home office can double as a sanctuary of your hobbies — be it reading, chess, or interior design inspo boards — filling your office with these details is sure to set it off on the right start.
2. You Can Make Organization Pretty
Some people think better with a messy desk, and if that’s you own it! But there are others who NEED everything to be in its place and for every place to have its thing. But there is no need to settle for boring organization! You can get beautiful baskets, glamourous letter trays, and chic pen cups — and even if you’re on a budget you can take the pretty paper and wrap up those inexpensive cardboard filling boxes to give them a custom, elegant finish.
3. Don’t Forget About The Chairs!
The throne. A luxury of the home office is the ability to think outside of the standard office chair. In your office at home, you really have the opportunity to use whatever chair you want — ballroom, wingback, velvet, leather, animal print, you name it! This goes for the chairs across the desk as well. You can get really funky with your decor in a home office, so make it fun!
4. Make Nooks Work For You
You don’t need a WHOLE room to make one heck of chic office space. This office is tucked under the wasted space of a set of stairs and it’s just brilliant. The other office doubles as a side table and this double purpose comes in so handy when you have a brilliant midnight idea.
5. Keep In Mind Who All In The Home Will Use The Home Office
Is your office just for you? Do your kids use this space for homework? Are you sharing with your spouse? Keeping frequently used items in handy places (like the pair of scissors that you can never manage to find when you need them) makes you space useful for all members of the family. Even if the office is all yours, chances are it will house things like mail, bills, pens, tape and everything in between, so keeping these types of things easy to locate prevents digging.
6. Make it Cozy + Personalized
Stark offices don’t help anybody. Cozy up to your space with plants, curtains, and good lighting. And you get the bonus of literally doing whatever you want here, so take advantage of it! If you want a giant photo of your family, do it! If you want to go with the boldest (read: *coolest) wallpaper option, slap it up! If you want to go bold with color, this is the place.
7. Cords Really Do Suck
There’s no way around it in this digital age. Chances are you’re going to need to plug in a computer on your desk, but after working SO hard to make the space look so elegant and inviting, the last thing you want is cords hanging out everywhere. You can avoid this in a couple of ways.
Placing your desk against a wall ensures the cords have direct access to a plug without seeing the cords.
Purchasing a desk that has those convenient holes for cords always helps hide them efficiently.
If your desk is in the center of the room, utilize a power strip to plug all of your excess cords in, and then run that single cord down the leg of your desk, cut a small (like really small) hole in your rug and run your cord to the nearest plug. Where there is a will, there is away!
8. Making It A “Home Base”
Some of the best home office setups are actually utilized as more of a “home base” where all tools are held. These are frequently found in kitchens or even in the laundry room. When you make your office double as a home base, you have the advantage of keeping all important documents, tools, and certificates in one handy, locatable location. No more stuffing documents in the back of your closet hoping you’ll remember it when you need it.
9. Add A Way To Hide It
The tricky part of a home office can be losing the ability to turn a blind eye to a pile work and focus on family. Sometimes in order to get re-inspired, you need to be able to shut the door (or curtains!) and take a minute to walk away. Adding a hidable element, whether that’s a physical door, shut cabinets or curtain, helps you dictate your own timing and balance.
The key to a home office is to make it conducive to getting work done. That’s it’s a function, so start all of you’re decision making from there. But be open to it! If you think that dark green walls will keep you inspired then dadgummit you make those walls green. Throw out the rules, make it work for you.