- When I decided to work from home, I had all these dreamy ideas of what it was going to be like. Leisurely school runs (we could take our time seeing as I didn’t have to rush to the office on someone else’s schedule), followed by a hot coffee at my desk before settling down to the day’s tasks. I’d take on board all the advice I’d read by popping to the gym during my lunch hour, and making sure I took proper breaks to stretch, to potter and to simply enjoy being at home amongst my own beautiful things. The reality? Yep, it couldn’t be further from this actually. The mornings are rushed, despite having been up working since 5am. There is no time for hot coffee because that time is used to clear up the mess from breakfast and to put on yet another wash, which then causes the washing machine to rattle and bang for a good hour whilst I try to concentrate on what I need to do for the day. I do make time for the gym, but it always means even more work piling up afterwards. And enjoying my surroundings? I would, except that almost six years in and now I’m getting a little tired of them! We recently converted our garage into an amazing office space and since then I’ve been coveting accessories and home decor ideas that are going to make the dream of revelling in my space a reality. So with this in mind, here are five beautiful home decor ideas for the work at home mum from Uncommon Goods- because let’s face it. When you’re stuck with the same four walls all day and a never ending to do list for work, you need your space to look good!
Get some decent storage
I am sick of piles of paper and other ‘bits’ hanging around by my desk. I mean, there are SO MANY things in our house that just don’t have a home! We have bowls or trays in every room filled with things that don’t belong, and that’s on top of things that should have places but we just don’t have the storage. I hope I’m not alone in this. Decent storage systems that look pretty really make me happy, and I love love love the idea of being organised and tidy. The problem is that I tend to have lots of little bits of paper hanging around, that I need at some point, but have nowhere to keep. Boxes or trays aren’t my thing, but this amazing wishing wall is. Ok, so whatever I get the kids are going to want to use too, and in this case I don’t mind. I love the idea of storing my scraps of paper and little notes to myself in the wishing wall- and while I know it might not feature on my husband’s idea of clever storage, to me the prettiness factor overrules all of that.
Prettiness aside, decent storage is a good idea for maintaining a clean and tidy workspace, and for making sure the important documents don’t get swept up with homework or parent’s letters from school. There are loads of great ideas here.
Flowers and plants
I love flowers and plants, and having them around me makes me feel happy. They almost seem to increase my productivity too, which is probably psychological more than anything- but my motto is if it works, it works, so having some pretty foliage in my office makes the top three without a doubt. If, however, you aren’t so hot on watering plants or arranging flowers, you could always go for other decorative bits to add a pretty touch to your workspace. I really do think it’s important to have somewhere that looks nice to you, even if it is just a corner in the kitchen. Fill it with things that make you smile, things that you like looking at. It can be really powerful to sit back during a stressful day and be surrounded by pretty things rather than a boring blank wall.
I am literally in love with this beautiful terrarium kit– perfect if you have green fingers, and an easy one to maintain too. And I love having lots of photos up on the walls too- snaps of the kids, and of days out we’ve enjoyed as a family. You can’t get those in a shared office, now can you?
Get a clock you love
We all need to know the time, and let’s face it when you work from home it can be so easy to over run, or to pick up the lap top when the kids are in bed and keep on working until you drop. I’ve been there, and it hurts. Eventually we all burn out, and so keeping an eye on the time is so so important. I find having a real clock on the wall really helps to keep me in check, and I love to look at unusual or quirky time pieces anyway. You don’t have to stick to just one clock either- I currently have three in my office, simply because I love them all so much. There are too many to mention over at Uncommon Goods, so take a look here to see if any take your fancy. I LOVE the wooden pendulum clock personally!
Of course, I share my office space with my husband, so it’s only fair that I pick a few things for him too. As much as he says he loves the flowers I place at the window every week, I suspect they wouldn’t’ be there if it was his office alone! I love the Father’s Day ideas here (the vinyl bluetooth speaker in particular, and while we’re at it I feel it’s important to mention a little about the location of our office too. When you work from home, it’s easy for the lines to get a little blurred between work and pleasure. And when this happens, it’s so so easy to find yourself working longer and longer hours without realising. I find it hard to switch off sometimes, but am getting better at taking a break. So my bonus tip is this:
Create a space where you can relax
We have a sofa and television in our office, plus a wall filled with vinyl so that we can listen to music while we work. And we actually sit on the sofa to take a break when we need to. I even use the sofa for squats on busy days when I can’t get to the gym! The fact that we have this easy space also means that when an urgent deadline is looming and the kids are home from school already, there is somewhere for them to rest and relax for half an hour while I finish what I need to do. Not ideal, but reality when you’re a working mum. I love the cushions and accessories here and these beautiful ornaments and accessories here for helping to make the chill out space that little more homely.
This is a collaborative post