This week I am excited to share a guest blog post from fellow blogger, Alice Robertson, of A Tidy Home. Be sure to visit her website for great organizational tips for your home.
You’ve spent countless hours perusing Pinterest and gazing in awe at all the gorgeous home office spaces, but they all seem to be designed with two things in mind: a big budget and big space. Unfortunately, you have neither of those things, leaving you wondering if you’ll be destined to use the living room couch as your makeshift desk. Fear not; there are plenty of ways to create a fully functional home office with limited space, all without forking out a ton of cash.
Get Creative With Your Office Location
Building an extra room will cost you a pretty penny, but utilizing the space you already have won’t. There are several creative places where you can squeeze in an office. If you have a spare closet, convert it into a small office space and use the shelving at the top as bonus storage. Perhaps your home has a random nook or corner that a desk could easily fit into. Think about rooms you never seem to use such as the dining room or a child’s playroom. You eat most of your meals in the kitchen or on the couch, and the toys end up in the living room anyways, so make use of this space however you can. The fact that you aren’t building on an addition paired with a small space equals savings that can be used to furnish and decorate your home office. If you’re having trouble picturing it, these home office photos courtesy of Apartment Therapy will get your creative juices flowing.
Stick to the Essentials
Once you’ve got a space carved out, it’s time to start filling it with the essentials, but if you aren’t careful costs can add up quickly. To maximize savings, scour your house for things you already have such as office supplies, desk lamps, and décor. Check out your local thrift store to find unique and affordable items, and personalize your space with DIY touches. Of course, there’s no need to count out the chain office stores as long as you know how to make them work for you. For example, you can fill your office with many of the supplies and technology you need by shopping at stores like Best Buy. Before you go, do your homework and look for Best Buy coupons and promo codes to help you save money, and make note of any upcoming sales. Don’t be afraid to reach out to friends and family via word of mouth or social media to inquire about any unused office supplies they are looking to part with for free or a fair price.
Focus on Productivity
It’s easy to get caught up designing your office space, but don’t forget about its ultimate purpose – providing you with a productive, distraction-free workspace. Clutter makes an office feel chaotic and stressful, making it hard to focus. Having the right desk, chair, and office technology is important, but proper storage is right up there too. Thankfully, storage is an area you can DIY, and it’s budget-friendly too. Install wall shelving above your desk and paint or wallpaper the wall to add a pop of color. Use storage containers in various sizes to keep your desk and office area neat, and don’t forget about desk organizers to prevent drawers from becoming a chaotic mess.
Comfort plays into productivity as well, so invest in things that truly make a difference such as an ergonomic office chair, extra lighting, or a diffuser filled with your favorite scent. Keep in mind that working from home is filled with distractions, so take advantage of tech tools that keep you focused such as a social media blocker, sound machine apps to block out noise, and a digital to-do list to hold you accountable.
There’s no reason to let your small space and budget keep you from having the home office you want and need. You might have to get a little creative with the location, but it’s all part of the fun. All you need is an idea and a budget-friendly mindset, and you’ll be setting up shop in your office in no time.
My dear friend Lori, bless her heart because this friend of mine has everything you could ever imagine when it comes to arts and crafts. A few years ago she showed up at my store with a huge box filled with buttons she no longer wanted. Hundreds, actually THOUSANDS of buttons. As the years have passed those buttons have sat in a cabinet in my store waiting to be used. Finally I found a use, or maybe a few.
I typically don't decorate for Valentine's day at home or at my store. However this year I wanted to get back to the part of my business where I was when I first started; creating more, trying new things, and not just for monetary gain but for the peace it brings me when I'm doing it. So, I pulled out that box of buttons this week and just let my creativity go.
After a few cute Valentine flower arrangments, I started to look for some other fun ideas courtesy of Pinterest, and stumbled upon some cute bookmark ideas made with paperclips, except the bookmarks were made with cloth hearts. So with the help of my two daughters, we dug through that box of buttons looking for every heart shaped button there was, and there were A LOT! After a few hours and a lot of hot glue, the bookmarks were modified and complete. Not too mention how much fun we had looking through thousands of buttons.
What things do you have laying around your home that could be used to create something beautiful and fun?
Valentine bookmark tags courtesy of The Mama Diaries Blog
If you like staying ahead of the trends you will love today's topic. I have the Top 5 Interior Design Trends for 2019. No, don't start throwing out your old stuff yet, this list may surprise you!
1. Klein Blue
Created by French painter Yves Klein in 1957, this striking bold blue will make a big statement to any dull room. Guess who has an amazing tall-boy dresser painted in this exact color, dripping with gold paint, for sale? ;)
2. Wood Panelling
You heard me, but not like what you are thinking. Natural materials that are classic in style, and natural wood grain, preferably with shade variations, looks light, modern, rich, and cozy.
The big trend these last couple years has been the cold Scandinavian look. Now you can incorporate woods, with rich reds, black and white, ceramics, and of course plants! Making your home into a meditative atmosphere is what's in,
4. Statement Ceilings
We've been seeing for the past decade or so, so much emphasis on statement walls, but we forgot about the 5th wall...until now. now colorful patterns and bold colors add personality to a room without overwhelming it. In addition to painting, you can add dark wooden beams for a really rustic look.
5. Cement Tile
Probably my personal favorite for 2019's biggest trend! These amazing textiles transform a room, whether as a floor tile or a kitchen backsplash. The patterns are often colorful and intricate and bring an old world charm to the home. I love how each tile is slightly different, adding handmade elegance to any room.
Of course velvet has made a comeback, gallery walls, and with furniture- art nouveau is making it's way back.
Ready to re-think your space but don't know where to begin? Call me to schedule your design consult, I'd be happy to help!
I'm interested in hearing your feedback on some of these trends. Love? Hate? Let me know!
Photos Courtesy of Toscano Interiors, Freshome.com, Granada Tile, Stein Team NYC,
All this talk about how much trouble our environment is in, had me moving towards making some of my own personal changes in how I waste less not just in my personal home but at the store as well. As we continue to move our company towards a more "greener" or conscious approach to doing things, you can imagine how excited I must have been when I discovered a better alternative to paint disposal.
We've all been there, many of us have unused paint cluttering our basement or garage just waiting to never be used again. I have an entire cabinet full of old paints! If finding creative ways to use up leftover paint is not up your alley, instead of just leaving the paint to collect dust, the best option is to recycle it.
PaintCare is the paint recycling program in Colorado that makes it easy for consumers and businesses to drop off their unused, unwanted paint for free recycling at more than 150 participating locations, 13 of which are located in Colorado Springs.
The drop-off sites are located mostly at paint and hardware stores. Paint drop-off sites accept all paint brands, regardless of when or where they were purchased as long as the paint is still in its original container with an original label on it. Items that can be dropped off include most house paints, primers, stains, sealers, and clear top coatings (varnish and shellac). Drop-off sites are open year-round during each retail location’s regular business hours.
PaintCare’s partners then transport the collected paint from the drop-off sites to processing facilities, where it is remixed into recycled-content paint, used as fuel, made into other products or, in the case of some unrecyclable paint, it will be dried out and properly disposed.
So, next time you think about tossing your leftover paint in the trash, take it to a PaintCare drop-off site to be recycled instead.
For more information about PaintCare and to find a PaintCare drop-off site near you, visit www.paintcare.org.
So often when working with my client's I notice one constant theme- their house doesn't really reflect the people living in it. More times than not it's a replication of something they've seen on television, or perhaps a past relationship. Hanging on tho things that no longer serve them or things that have nothing to do with their personality or lifestyle, period. Why? Why don't our homes support us, the real "us"? As a life coach and designer it is so important to me to make sure my client's feel supported in their spaces. That these spaces are a real reflection of the people living in them. A beautiful, well-intentioned home reflects your true self back to you. It holds you through life’s lows and celebrates you through life’s highs.
In my own personal home, my taste is more eclectic. I like unique pieces that you can't find unless you are buying direct from the artist who created it. When I travel, instead of buying kitchy souvenirs, I go to galleries and find a piece of local art that moves me. Art is something that you have to have an emotional response to in order to buy it. I feel that on so many levels, being an artist myself, and the feeling I get knowing I supported someone who put a piece of their soul into what I bought, that will in turn go into my home, and move my soul every time I see it.
I found these beautiful photos by Photographer, Amie Davis, this summer, when we made a day trip to New Orleans while vacationing in Orange Beach, AL. I even got to meet her the day I purchased these in this fun little shop on St. Peter Street, called Skull Paradise. She explained what kind of film she used and the type of camera. it made these pieces even more personal, and I love looking at them whenever I pass by them in my upstairs hallway. It takes me back to that hot July day, my kids were whining because they were hot and hungry, but I was entranced by Amie's story of the 35mm film from the 70's she used, and how she loved taking photos of cemeteries (as do I). I love that my personal home is filled with lots of eclectic art pieces like: photographs, religious artifacts, pottery, and sculptures. They are unique to me, and have a story to tell every time I look at them. This is how "home" should be. It should tell a story. It should be your happy place. Your furniture doesn't have to be the best, you don't need to replicate what you see on t.v. in order for you to be happy there.
Could your space use a little help in supporting you? Maybe you are going through a new life transition. You don’t need to have gone through a major, external, or difficult transition to benefit from this work. Perhaps you’re just ready for a little update or a jolt of vibrancy, joy, or some wild creation. If so, I would love to help make your home a place where you are happy and your soul feels at ease.
You may have heard this term used before or you may have read it on my website, and maybe aren't to sure what exactly this is. A mood board is an arrangement of images, materials, textures, fonts, and colors that evokes the style of a project or concept. ... A design schematic is a complete room design similar to a mood board, but it includes a floor plan with furniture and decor laid out to scale.
One of the most difficult parts of interior design, especially for the client, is envisioning what a space is going to look like at the end. Showing clients a board helps them visualize their ideas, it helps them and myself mix and match design elements and remove/add ideas. The concept board is a great way to explore the design and lay out my inspiration in a comprehensible way. Toscano Interiors specifies different options of furnishings all well coordinated no matter what the client selects, forming a unique tailored design aesthetic for each client. Each concept board introduces a comfortable amount of variations on how a room can be set up without overwhelming the client. Of course floor plans and elevations are also introduced to the client for the overall design concept presentation.
Creating a mood board to present to clients allows everyone involved to agree on a direction before too much work is done. Two people may use the same word, for example “clean” or “vibrant” but they may mean something completely different to each person.
As you can see, offering design concept boards to my clients as a part of my design packages helps as an important tool in the beginning stages of the creative process as well as a very versatile communication tool.
Author, Candance Toscano
"You can design the life of your dreams and acquire that luxurious, fulfilled and empowered lifestyle you know you have always wanted."