Working from home: how to set up your perfect space

A  lack of space when it comes to allocating an area for work at home needn’t be a huge hurdle. I’m going to tell you about some simple steps towards creating your own work space.
As many more of us are “WFO” whether it be half the week or just one day, our homes are required to be multi-functional. Most offices have been designed  for the sole purpose of work, though that is changing as the line between home and work begins to smudge.  Much to the delight of many, we are becoming a society that sees the importance of making work enjoyable, sociable and actually good for our health, both physically and mentally.
When you’re at home you tend to have many seating or standing positions as you inhabit the space, a work space should be part of that flow whilst also allowing for concentration on the task.

1. Create a space that is just for you and your work

Get rid of anything that is distracting or reminds you of other things you could be doing, even things like clothes drying racks, boxes that should be in the loft. You’ll get a lot more done in your working day allowing you to have breaks and your evenings free to crack on with your home chores.

home office, workspace, working from home, interior design

 

2. De-clutter before you re-clutter

Having lots of things around you when working isn’t all bad, but make sure you start with a clean slate. You want to add in things, not layer on top of others.

home office, workspace, working from home, interior design

 

3. Keep it clean and organised

Hoover and dust your work area as much as you would the rest of your house. At the end of each day, clear your work surfaces and file things away where possible and keep a little duster nearby to give your desk a quick wipe down.

home office, workspace, working from home, interior design

 

5. Inspire

Whether you work in the creative industry or not, it’s good to create a sort of mood board that is changeable, that you keep on a wall near your desk. This can be a constant source of inspiration and enable you to keep on track with your plans. Another idea is to use some whiteboard paint, you can get it in a matt finish so you actually can’t see it on the wall. I used Smart Wall paint in a recent design for someone’s home office, it’s brilliant for brainstorming and sketching out big ideas.

home office, workspace, working from home, interior design

 

6. Use colour

Colour can really help to focus your mind, deep blues particularly. If you are able to have different areas in your office, then you can create different mood boards that spark your interests, you certainly don’t need to paint an entire wall.

home office, workspace, working from home, interior design

 

7. Pay attention to your posture

I suppose you’ve heard by now that sitting is the new smoking. Humans were not made to sit down all day long, but if you are having to do so for fairly long periods of time, ensure that your chair is at the correct height for you, your legs/knees should be at a right-angle when your feet are firmly on the floor, and that the top of your screen is at eye level. I went to a talk during Clerkenwell Design Week at SteelCase and learnt a great deal about the way we interact with our working spaces, you have to consider the amount of time you actually spend at work, compared to either being at home or sleeping… it’s a lot of time to be sitting!

home office, workspace, working from home, interior design

 

8. Light your space

One of the main delights of working from home is that you can be flexible about where you want to work. Choose an area that is well lit, preferably near a window. Pay attention to the way daylight moves around your home and where possible, move with it!

home office, workspace, working from home, interior design

 

9. Shut down

Once you have completed your work tasks for the day, make sure you save your work (of course) and shut down your computer, that way you will make sure you actually complete tasks rather than leaving them open for your arrival the next day.

home office, workspace, working from home, interior design

 

10. Plants are your quiet friends

Invest in some glorious green friends, they will not only keep you company, but also help with your oxygen levels whilst giving you something to look after too. If you can’t work outside, then a few large house plants can bring nature in.

home office, workspace, working from home, interior design

 

I’m not a fan of odd numbers, so I’m leaving it at 10. however – one tip that doesn’t relate to interiors is to make sure you refresh - Keep a stash of healthy snacks, take regular breaks and get outside.

home office, workspace, working from home, interior design

All images can be found on my Pinterest board – Office Design

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Top 5 tips for creating a calm bedroom space

Are you finding it difficult to drift off into the land of nod? Check out my top 5 tips for creating a calm bedroom space over at FADS.

Neutral Bedroom

 All images can be found on my Pinterest boards Warehouse Bedroom and Bedrooms

 

 

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Glasto Glamping

It is that time of year again where certain folk ward off the rain through the form of uncontrollable dance. Sadly I am not attending any festivals this year but as a consolation prize I have a super sunny roof terrace and pretty loud speakers…. that’ll do, pig.

I present to you my guide from last year: 6 simple tips to glamp up your festival tent. I hope it helps those of you who are lucky enough to be at a festival this year.
Maybe you’re reading this by the Pyramid stage in the scorching sun, wishing you had bought your feather duvet. (nnaaaaaahht)

interior boho

 

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Top 5 tips for shades of grey

I am no stranger to the alluring pull of grey, whether it be slate, warm, muted or cold. It seems grey has become our generation’s magnolia, though I doubt (hope) it will ever be tarnished with the same brush.

White is white, a perfect blank canvas and back drop to any space, but grey gives you the sense of something a little deeper, with a chance to show your personal taste through it’s shades. In my neverending quest to constantly adapt and improve my living space I’ve come up with a few tips on how to use the extremeley adaptable yet current Grey:

1. Pick your shade carefully
From harsh industrial down to the other end of the more soothing spectrum, greys can pack a punch or act like they’re not even there. Choose tones that will compliment how you want to feel in that particular room or space, for example you may go for a more blue/grey for the bedroom.

Large warehouse
2. Use grey to offset/ pop your colours
I find that grey pushes the colours around it, like a helpful friend boosting confidence. My favourite colours to be “popped” with grey have to be white, pink and gold. Some may argue that white is not a colour but it really is and I feel that grey ushers white to the forefront in an overall scheme.

Dining
3. Layer up with textures
Grey is a wonderful colour to use if you like your layered throws and snuggly corners. Soft knits can be seen in finer detail when they are dyed grey, also you can layer everything up in different shades or use it as a base to compliment other textiles you might already have.


4. Use nature to boost your greys
Plants and flowers look excellent on a grey backdrop – nuff said.

Grey interior
5. Use your floor as a canvas
No-one buys a white rug unless they wear plastic shoe covers and have a penchant for plastic overcoats on their sofas… though some of these types do still exist. As your sofa tends to be the largest item in your living room its normally best to keep it neutral, much like your rug. However your rugs needn’t be ridiculously pricey and can be sourced in some gorgeous patterned greys; a selection of which I have recently managed to set my eyes upon at Urban Outfitters. Here’s one for you to dribble over, you can find the rest of them at my Warehouse board.

Granite

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The silence is broken

It has been a while and for that I must apologise. However you’ll be pleased to know the silence has not been in vain. I have been interior designing my little heart out, working on a splendid client residence.

white, interiors, chair, interior designThe entire process so far has been very exciting for me.
I’ll be posting tips on various subjects within the process to help you define your own homes and the style within.
In the meantime I’ll be adding the final touches to my design, tying up any loose ends and giving my own home office a jolly good tidy!

All images can be found on my Pinterest board – Warehouse
If you would like to see photos of my completed design, please contact me directly

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Competition time

The lovely folks at FADS are offering £100 worth of vouchers to the winner of a Pinterest competition. You just need to create your own moodboard. It’s a great idea to have a freshen of your home over spring, no grand purchases required but a few simple additions like some new dining chairs can really make a big difference.

Here are the details of the competition:

“We’ve taken once again to Pinterest to restyle our perfect home for Spring, mixing some of our own items with little touches we have found around the internet to excite us. We want you to do the same, build a board in your own style for Spring, the one we like the most will win £100 FADS voucher!

You can find our Pinterest board here; have a look see what you think and hopefully it’ll inspire you with some ideas of your own. There is free reign to build a board on any room in the home, or even the whole house, you don’t have to follow our ideas or style!”

And full details on their blog, good luck!!

You can find my Pinterest board here: FADS

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Softly softly

I’ve been rather quiet lately as I’ve been immersed in interior design projects, which certainly isn’t a bad thing!
A new residential project has started and overlapped on my apartment project, so I’m putting my personal designs on hold for a month or so.

I’ve treated myself to a lovely new notebook PC which I’d spent months researching. After having spent so much time planning when to buy it, I ended up clicking the buy button online after a few too many Caipirinhas – best drunken purchase ever made, apart from a rather fetching reversible black and orange bomber jacket back in the 90′s in Acton.

I won’t waffle on about how great it is, otherwise I would expect Asus to give me one for free, (hello Asus?) but if you’re interested in something that’s light enough to pop in your handbag/manbag with a lot of memory and a touch screen (oooh fancy) – Asus Vivo Book is the notebook for you!…. my days in advertising come back to haunt me.

Next week I’ve roped my dear Mother into sewing a special laptop case for me, I’ll be choosing my own fabrics and hopefully printing my logo onto it.
Right, back to work for me, hope you manage to guzzle many a refreshing beverage over the weekend!

Image on Drinkyplops

 

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Part 2: Photoshoot

Well that has to be one of my most tiring weekends I’ve experienced!
Having started on the painting 3 evenings earlier, it had become a routine part of our lives to allocate roller or paint brush duty. Doing the little corners and fiddly bits gave me a break from the stretching and pushing action of the roller, It is exhausting, so much so I fell asleep whilst watching Usual Suspects on Saturday night at 9pm – rock and roll.

Allow plenty of time for your preparation and the actual painting, this is not something you can or want to rush. Also make sure you have a tripod and a decent camera, if you don’t then you can use editing software after to crisp the images up, try Google’s Picasa which is free and really simple to use.

Onto Sunday and we were running out of daylight, which happens to really help with photography, hmph!. (key point from all the photography blog tips I’ve been reading)
We managed to crack on despite our aching bodies and finish the last bits of painting, then it was picture time.
I moved pretty much all of my little trinkets and fancies into the store room.. praise the store room!

Behold a selection of sneak peeks:

Interior Design

Interior Design

Living room design

I still have a few things I would like to do to finalise the design but I must say that living in the apartment this week has been SO much nicer, this is due to only having things around me that I really need and love, and of course the new fresh colours on the walls.

I will gradually introduce my things back into the space, but these things will have to be pretty special to make it in.
The next phase will be concentrating on specific areas in my home – colours, lighting, layout, objects and furniture, but I’m so pleased that the base work has been done!

 

All images can be found on my Pinterest Board Warehouse

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Part 1: fresh lick of paint

I’m currently planning my weekend which will be dedicated to the painting of our apartment.
Since we moved in we’ve had the delight of fairly muted walls and we would like to keep it that way. Having neutral walls gives you the luxury of an eternal canvas to work with; you can hang pictures and put up shelves without worrying about colour clashes or a distracting opulent background.
At the moment some of the walls are a sort of mushroom grey/ green which is in a need of lightening and freshening up. The bedroom and kitchen are both a deep red which can be a little over powering. The bathroom was originally bright orange/ yellow which sort of reminded me of being on holiday, but it was a bit much for me so I used a muted grey with a hint of blue. It’s not that I’m scared of colour, I just prefer accents and accessories within things like pictures and cushions, which are also a lot easier to change.

The exciting thing about our fresh lick of paint is that we will be photographing the space to make it available for shoots, videos etc. in the future. In order to make it as appealing as possible I’m going for the Scandinavian look with it’s fresh, clean lines. The colour I have gone for in the living and dining area is Nordic Bliss, sounds divine, doesn’t it? It’s basically a slightly off-white with a hint of grey. For the bedroom I’m using Pressed Thistle which is a sort of purpley grey.

We couldn’t quite wait until the weekend so we’ve been starting the preparation, which I’m very glad we did as now we can take our time.

A few little tips that I can now pass on to you:

1. Prepare the walls, remove any tape, fill in any holes and give them a quick wipe to remove any dust (or creepy crawlies that you’d rather not be a paint-laminated part of your decor). Also put old newspapers down on the floor and move all furniture as far away as possible, rollers do splatter no matter how slow you go; I have the dotty skin to prove it.

2. Make sure you have all your “tools” at the ready – a set of paint brushes for the tricky corners, a couple of rollers and a paint tray. (I normally throw away the roller bit after I use it as cleaning it can be a bit fiddly, also when it dries it can get crispy which won’t give you the best finish on your next paint job) I’m telling you all this because I ended up using a baking tray for paint…

3. Pick your colours carefully, think about where the sun rises; what are your brightest points in your home, where can you get away with richer colours and where should you be sensitive to the darker spots by using lighter colours.

4. Get some tunage on so you can dance while you paint, also a couple of bottles of beer wouldn’t go amiss if it’s not a school night. Painting is a bit of a workout so I suggest you round it up with a takeaway.

I’m really looking forward to putting some professional shots of my own home up on here, until then you can browse my inspiration on Pinterest – Warehouse . I’ll be adding to this board and creating a few more for each room/area as I go along.

Now for the highlight of my week: I think I may have made a couple of new fwends in the DIY shop on Chapel Market (they don’t know we are firm fwends yet), they’ve stayed open a little later every evening to mix up my paints and answer my silly questions. Next time I visit them I might go down in dungarees with paint flecks all over my face so that I look authentic, maybe they’ll even give me a discount for looking so “with it”.

If you would like help with designing your own space, do get in touch.

 

 

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