Having a small space for your home office can definitely be challenging. When I started working full-time as Texture Design Co, it took me a few months to figure out my work flow and how to make my small office compatible with my routine. Here are a few solutions I've learned along the way!
Originally, the small space made me feel antsy, unsettled, and scatter-brained. The good news is that now I LOVE my work space! I can be creative in this space because I'm surrounded by things that make me smile, and I'm no longer worried about clutter. So on that note, let me share with you some tips...
1. Find organization solutions that work for you.
For me, these photo boxes and paper document boxes make a world of a difference. I can label what is in them, and I don't have to go searching everywhere for what I need. Also, I love the ease of throwing items right into a box. YOU CAN'T SEE WHAT'S INSIDE, so it doesn't matter if the inside of the box is messy! My brain feels much calmer when I can't see the ugly clutter items. Now they are tucked in labeled box where I can find them again. (Boxes are from Michaels Craft Stores and Ikea)
As Ikea says on their website, "Hide things in plain sight."
Same goes for the square Ikea baskets! I keep unattractive things like bubble wrap in those wonderful catch-all baskets. It keeps the ugly packing supplies organized and out of sight! So for me, organization requires knowing where something is, so I can easily find it. But it also means keeping it easy enough that I'll actually put things away. With the boxes and baskets, cleaning up is a breeze. And the mess is no longer in view, leaving my mind free to think about creative things! Find what works for you by analyzing what needs to be put out of sight but still easily accessible.
2. Only buy furniture that maximizes your storage.
If you have a small space, every piece of furniture counts! I used to have a giant old desk that took up tons of room but offered little working space and little storage. It had to go. I have since added this Ikea Kallax cube shelf that changed my life. (not exaggerating)
The dresser used for my Texture Design Co. supplies was from my childhood bedroom! Slapped some Annie Sloan paint (Duck Egg Blue) on there, and it looks so happy holding my printer and paper supplies. The drawers are essential; I keep so many office materials in those drawers! The point: if you have furniture that isn't maximizing your storage, replace it with something more functional!
3. Combine functionality with beauty!
What do I mean by combine functionality with beauty? Well most of our office supplies need to be sitting out so we can easily use them. Sooo...find office supplies that you enjoy looking at. Find functional pieces that look beautiful or make you smile when they are in plain view! Folders, pens, pencils, scissors, notebooks, notepads...all of these items I use every day. I'm not going to put them in a drawer somewhere. But when they are sitting on my table or on the shelf, they still look beautiful. I've found several of these items at Target. ^
For more ideas on pretty office supplies, check out our blog post on a Mint Themed Office Space.
4. Get creative with your wall space!
Wall space is prime realty in a small office. So use it wisely! Be sure to include artwork or inspirational items to spur creativity. But also think outside the box! Can you add some more shelves or hang any of your work supplies on the wall? We made some wood shelves using metal brackets. When I'm not using my colored pencils and markers, I can place them on the shelves! (Obviously I was still using them when this picture was taken, lol.) But think about what items or collections you have for work, and perhaps you can display them creatively on your wall.
5. Bring the outdoors indoors.
This may not seem like an important tip, but there is something about adding greenery to a small space that makes it feel inviting. Perhaps the plants trick your mind to thinking you're outside! Or maybe they're just helping you get more oxygen to the brain. Whatever the reason, adding indoor plants makes any space more cozy and helps you to enjoy the space you're in. Trust me; it works! The real trick comes with learning how to keep the plants alive. I highly recommend a cactus to start!
I hope some of that was helpful for you! Let me know if you have any tricks you've learned from working in a small space. I always tell people that you'd be surprised how much more work you can accomplish when you like being in the space you're in! #happyspaces
Have a great weekend!