Tips and News

This page is a hub for me to share interior design tips and tricks that I have picked up in my many years of doing home renovations and staging.

If you have any questions or comments about any of the articles, please get in touch!

4 Top Interior Design Tips for Your Home Office – Working from Home Part 2

4 Top Interior Design Tips for Your Home Office – Working from Home Part 2

Follow these simple interior design tips to make working from home more effective and inspiring.

In Part 1 of this series, I gave you the 3 Steps to Help You Find Space for Your Home Office. Now that you’ve found the best location, I encourage you to follow these professional interior design techniques to make the most of that space!

TIP 1: EMBRACE NATURAL LIGHT

Natural light helps keep your work space more energetic and inspiring than any designer lamp ever could! Not all of us have access to rooms with a huge amount of natural light, or perhaps the space that works best isn’t the brightest. If you find yourself in this situation, don’t fret! A well placed mirror does wonders to bounce light around the room. Placing a large mirror on the wall opposite a window or in the area that gets the most light works best.

Don’t like the look of a big mirror? There are two great work-arounds for you to try. A fresh coat of bright white paint will also help reflect light around the room. Or, you can put up an artful cluster of small picture frames and put up a few smaller mirrors among them. You’re still using mirrors, but they are barely noticeable among the frames.

 

TIP 2: USE YOUR VERTICAL SPACE

Take advantage of the vertical space above your work station. Aka: your walls! I find that most people focus heavily on furniture that needs to occupy the ground and forget about all the potential space they have just overhead.

There are plenty of vertical storage solutions these days that are beautifully designed and very cost effective. Better yet, you have a myriad of options depending on your personal style. Are you into sleek floating shelves, industrial shelving combining metal and wood, or do you love a more rustic look? As spaces have become smaller, more and more vertical storage options have become readily available to help people adapt.

 

TIP 3: GO THE EXTRA MILE WITH DECORATING

Make the space your own! Your desk back at work felt cozy because you decorated it with things you love. You may not think to do this because you’re home- you’re already surrounded by things you love!- however there is a huge difference in a space when it has been decorated with thought and intention.

Whether you are lucky enough to have a spare room or if you are working from your dining table, try to surround yourself with things that are inspiring and that bring a positive energy. Family photos, plants, and art are all excellent starting blocks. 

Don’t forget that because you are at home, you can go the extra mile using essential oils and music to treat and surround some of your other senses. These things would be unacceptable in a shared workspace, so use this time working from home to indulge yourself a little!

 

TIP 4: DON’T SKIMP ON ERGONOMICS

When you’re working in a temporary space, comfort and ergonomics often feel less important as you’re just there ‘for now.’ That can’t be farther from the truth! You should double check all of the factors below and adjust your equipment and furniture until you are comfortable.

  • Appropriate desk and chair heights. Your feet should touch the ground and your elbows should be able to comfortably rest on your desk
  • A comfortable, supportive chair
  • Lighting that is easy on the eyes and bright enough if you are doing small work that requires reading fine print
  • Enough space on your desk for your monitor to be a comfortable viewing distance and angle for your eyes

Compromising ergonomics is never worth it! Desk-related strains can creep up on you and be extremely painful and lasting, so the importance of ergonomics should never be underestimated.

 

 

I hope these tips are able to help you work from home in these unprecedented times. Our jobs are such a large part of our lives, so ensuring we feel as comfortable as possible in our work spaces is incredibly important. If you feel like you aren’t sure where to begin or which direction to go, I invite you to check out our Interior Design Consultation Services which we can do remotely. Please stay safe and stay healthy!
4 Interior Design Tips for your Home Office

3 Steps to Help You Find Space for Your Home Office – Working from Home Part 1

3 Steps to Help You Find Space for Your Home Office – Working from Home Part 1

It’s time to flex your interior design muscles to make the most of working from home.

It’s no secret that COVID has a lot of us working from home. Many of us were unprepared for this change and aren’t feeling as inspired by our home work spaces as we would like to be. If you are one of those many people, follow these 3 steps to take a second look at how your home office setup might be improved.

STEP 1: TAKE A LOOK YOUR SPACE

This is the first step in every interior design challenge, but we are so familiar with our homes that we may not think twice about it! Many people simply set up their workspace on their kitchen table because it is an obvious place to sit down, but by doing so, completely overlook a potentially better home office location!

Ask Yourself…

  • Is there any space available that is used infrequently or isn’t a functional part of your daily life?
  • Can you rearrange the existing furniture to carve out a slot for your work station?

For example, do you have an infrequently used guest room with a lot of clutter, or is there an exercise bike collecting dust somewhere that could be moved? Or maybe you live in a small space and just need to move a bookshelf into the bedroom to make room for a desk in your living area. That sure beats sitting on the couch! Sometimes the best solution may take a few hours of work over the weekend, but you’ll reap the benefits in the long run

STEP 2: EVALUATE AND PRIORITIZE HOW YOU USE SPACE

At work, we’re used to having everything immediately on hand. If you’re working from home, opening yourself to the possibility of parceling your work space around the house can help you use your space more efficiently. A big part of interior design work is making sure space is being used to its best potential.

Ask Yourself…

  • What equipment is required to perform your work, and is there any equipment you use less frequently?
  • Do you have enough power outlets?
  • Do you need a place to store reference material?
  • Are your job’s tasks divided into clear and different types of work?

If your job requires different tasks and equipment, you might benefit from splitting your work space in different areas of your home. Store equipment, references, or items you don’t need as often in another location to declutter your main work space. While you may miss the convenience of having everything being immediately on hand, I promise you that the mental clarity you will feel will make up for it!

You can also split up your workspace not only by the equipment needed, but the type of focus and energy each task requires. Perhaps some hands on work is best done in a quiet space with little distraction, but some work involving brainstorming or phone chats would be more inspired if you had a cozy spot near a big window. As the saying goes: divide and conquer!

STEP 3: SHARING AND COMMUNICATION

One of the biggest changes COVID has brought about is our partners, roommates and children suddenly being a part of our work life. We’ve all been on conference calls where someone’s toddler bursts into the room, not to mention hearing your partner ‘professional voice’ on telephone calls!

Ask Yourself…

  • How many people in your household are working from home, and do you share any similar tasks?
  • If you have children, what level of supervision do they require?
  • What level of privacy is required?

Everyone you’re sharing space with should be brought in on the conversation in Step 3! Take this time to share the ideas and thoughts you had in Steps 1 and 2. Tensions are running high for a lot of us, but now more than ever, we need to listen to others and in turn be listened to!

Asking these questions can lead you to surprising conclusions that can allow you to share your space more effectively. Be it scheduling your time to share a purposeful workspace, or ensuring the person who needs the most quiet is able to find that time easily and without stress.

I sincerely hope you and your family are coping well in these crazy times. Not to mention staying safe and healthy. In Part 2, I will be giving you my top tips for decorating and arranging the space or spaces you find for your home office! We can all get through this together.