When I first started blogging full time, I would pitch up wherever I fancied to work form on my laptop.
Cue: the sofa, kitchen table, bed . . . most of these scenarios also involved a uniform of pyjamas and a cafetière for 8.
After a few months of working like this, I realised that it was 1) not remotely ergonomic 2) not conducive to working productively and 3) really not very inspiring.
I also learnt that no single person needs to drain a cafetière for 8 – ha!
Don’t get me wrong, I still love a little email-from-bed session on occasion (it’s one of your greatest luxuries when working from home!), but I’ve noticed a HUGE improvement in my productivity and overall work/life happiness since converting our second bedroom into my home office.
This space was the happiest incarnation of my home office to date.
Having gone from no office, to a desk in our bedroom, to spare-bedroom-incarnation #1, a quick spruce with The White Company and now this – my favourite creativity-boosting layout – I’ve learnt my fair share of tips and tricks for creating a home office environment you truly love to head to.
Now Oli and I have just moved, I’m working on creating a new home office – again! But the one I’m sharing with you today will always have a special place in my heart.
If you work from home, or are considering setting up a home office for ad hoc days, or just love a room tour (I’m with you!), I hope you’ll enjoy virtually stepping into The Elgin Avenue HQ . . .
Home Office Tour
A Room Flip
Before I had my office organised like the photo above, I had the furniture in completely different places around the room.
Don’t underestimate the power of simply moving your furniture, or flipping a space entirely
It’s free (great!), and can completely change the energy of your home office. When I finally moved my desk so that I would face the window in the room, I felt so much more energised.
A fresh coat of paint can do wonders too. With under £100 I repainted my whole home office, and finally had the bright studio-like finish I’d always wanted. I only wish I’d done it sooner.
My Desk Area
This FINNVARD/LINNMON IKEA desk has seen me through four years of working from home. It’s so inexpensive at £75 and you can choose between four colour combinations.
Since Oli and I were renting this property we didn’t put many pictures up on the wall. Instead I used my desk, chairs and free-standing shelves to prop prints, paintings and inspiration boards up.
I really need to buy a good desk chair for my new office, as rotating dining room chairs (as I am doing in this photo) is so bad for your back. If you have a recommendation for a good office chair I’m ALL ears!
Repurposing Furniture And Creating A Laptop Nook
The space opposite my desk is where I mainly used to sit and work from my laptop.
Sometimes just changing the location of your work from one place in your office to another can be a big energy boost.
I like editing photos on my desktop, but for emails and compiling Croissant Reading I prefer to work from my laptop.
You may notice that I repurposed things quite a bit in my office. A wicker hamper became a coffee table when I placed a marble off-cut on top, and a chair became a prop for my vision board. Since our old flat was pretty quirky in style anyway, playing around with second-hand or re-purposed furniture fitted the overall aesthetic.
Plus, it saved Oli and I time and money to simply use what we already had, or what we ended up being passed down from our parents.
Fresh flowers are always a lovely touch too. But if it’s too much of an expense to invest in fresh blooms every week, try eucalyptus which dries beautifully or low-maintenance house plants.
A Getting Ready Area
On the opposite side of the room was a random – but very pretty – built-in wardrobe. Again as this was a rented flat, there wasn’t a whole lot of wiggle room with what we could do structurally, so I ended up using the cupboard for files, and Christmas decorations.
In the corner, I set up a little vanity area – which since these photos got a spruce of its own.
The full-length mirror was another bargain buy from IKEA, and is great for trying on outfits to shoot and bringing a bit more light into the room.
Although it’s not pictured, I also had a simple hanging rail in this room which I used to keep the outfits I was shooting for upcoming blog posts. This helped me to stay organised, and plan outfits from top to toe.
Again, you can see here that I used the floor space to prop up pictures instead of drilling holes in the walls.
Stationery And Storage
All my fellow stationery lovers – hands up!
Pretty stationery will make your work day better. Fact.
I find it really hard to part with my notebooks, and so I keep them all in one of my storage boxes. Perhaps one day I’ll end up recycling the lot, but in a way it feels like my life’s work is in those scribbles!
As for the shelving unit, it’s again IKEA – this time the KALLAX unit. I used to have it propped vertically, but I like it so much better this way so I can use it as an extra surface for holding prints, flowers and bits and bobs.
My Biggest Takeaways
- Paint your home office a mood-boosting colour. I changed the wall colours of my office from a beige to a bright white which made a huge difference to the light in the room. I’d love to try a soft pink one day too.
- Put effort into the aesthetics and organisation of the room. A beautiful room alone can boost your creativity; but a beautiful and organised room will boost your creativity and productivity. I use my storage boxes to separate things I need often into categories such as: tech equipment, stationery, shoot props etc.
- Tidy up at the end of every day. It can be tempting to leave a coffee cup, plate and half-opened parcel on your desk. My experience however is that it will only make you feel demoralised when you get to work the next morning. Instead, make it a rule to completely clear and tidy your office at the end of every working day. I find that this helps to put a spring in my step in the morning. It also helps me to focus on tasks I actually need to get on with. I also recommend writing your to-do list for the next day the evening before so you can get straight on with your tasks.
SHOP THE POST
What’s Your Take?
I’d love to know if you enjoyed this little tour? And if you too have a home office?
If you don’t what would your dream home office space look like?!
Any questions you have about this tour – drop me a line below!
For more home office inspiration, I’ve devised a work space Pinterest board which is ALL about creating a home office environment you’ll love.
Love, Monica x
Photography by Frances McMahon