Here in Washington, we've got about three weeks left of this stay at home order and more and more of us are working from home that otherwise wouldn't have. I do typically work from home, but until recently I haven't had my own designated workspace, which can lead to a plethora of distractions and disorganization. If you're currently in the same boat, I have some space planning tips that may just help! Seriously, the way your home is laid out can have a huge effect on productivity. It may just need some creativity and professional insight.
For a long time, my favorite spot in my home to work from was the kitchen. I loved sitting at the island in a beautiful and open space where there were windows on three sides of me. Most of the time this worked out great, but due to its central role in the life of my family, it was also the place of the greatest amount of distractions. It also was NOT a good place to keep my files and samples (though I often tried!). In times of distraction, finding a more secluded place to work was necessary. If you don't have a designated office or nook in your home like I didn't, you might just need to create another area where you can go hide for a while in order to hunker down. I'll show you how to create that space with the furniture you already have.
If you are in need of temporary seclusion, here's what I want you to do. . .
Take a walk around your home. We are going to create a working nook for you, so go EVERYWHERE. Take note of your favorite places. Is there a window where the sunlight floods through, a tucked-away corner, loaded bookcases, or a cozy fireplace? Out of your favorite places, list the quietest ones - a spare bedroom, formal sitting room, basement corner? Pay special attention to the places that may have storage, even if it currently holds odds and ends. This may just act as a place to hold any supplies you use to work with.
I love this timeless little writing corner of @mamawatters on Instagram.
Great, now choose one of those places as your temporary work nook. If you have a table to write on, that is fantastic, but it is perfectly fine if the furniture arrangement is not yet conducive to working. So now look at the current furniture arrangement. Are there lounge chairs in a conversational setting? Take one into your designated space. Do you have a side table somewhere? Take it into your designated space. Do you have a table lamp or a task lamp? Take it into your designated space. Angle it all in a way that pulls you from the social scene of the room, creating a little nook. Keep in mind that seclusion can be created from elements other than walls. Angled properly, furniture can create an adequate barrier between you and distractions.
This is a great example by Town & Country Living.
Now accessorize with a plant (that's my go-to), a book, and a throw pillow. The lamp will provide more light just around the designated area, outlining the "nook", and the accessories will ground the vignette, making it look purposeful and permanent while giving you something beautiful to look at when your eyes get tired of looking at your screen. If you are near a cabinet or shelf, replace the items with your necessary work tools. Use baskets or bins to organize.
Simple accessorizing by Jamie Nell Design.
I recognize this isn't a one-size-fits-all, but the principle is that you can create a small get-away in your home no matter the current layout. A place where the sound doesn't carry quite as much, where the tv isn't visible, where you aren't thinking about the dirty dishes, and where someone can't come sit in a chair next to you and have a conversation. This will be your place to hunker down in peace until your work is done for the day!
For all those who need a little more direction, hop on my website and schedule an online design consultation for $25 off. I would love to virtually walk through your home with you and help you create a space where you can continue working to provide for your family during this time. On my website, schedule a time for your video call; there are time openings on every Tuesday and Thursday, so select a time that is convenient for you. You will then get an hour and a half with me to pick my brain and get direction and solutions. This is your time with a professional interior designer and as time permits, you are welcome to ask me about any other area of your home as well! People love using the consultation to get direction on furniture arrangements, color selections, and (my favorite) remodels. Just use the code WORKINGFROMHOME at checkout, which will be available through May 4th, 2020.
I know your home can become a productive workspace, just like mine, with some simple design solutions!
With love always,