When I moved to New York City five years ago as a freelancer, I bought home office furniture so I wouldn’t have to spend hours working at distracting and expensive coffee shops. But I can’t say I ever really “decorated” my office or chose carefully-curated pieces; it was purely about function. While I’m no longer living the freelance life, earlier this year I found myself working from home again, but doing everything I could to avoid working at my desk, opting instead for my cozy and much more thoughtfully-decorated living room.
After moving to a new apartment a few months ago and setting up my office furniture again, I stopped to ask myself why I didn’t enjoy working there. The answer: it was bland, uninspiring, and felt thrown-together—and not in a fun, eclectic kind of way. So, instead of spending the foreseeable future working on my couch, it was time to put some more thought into my office space and create a room I really loved.
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A Comfortable Yet Stylish Chair
I had a classic black office chair for several years, and while it was relatively comfortable, it made the space feel a bit too well, office-y. Every home office I saw on Instagram and design blogs always had a statement-making chair, combining design, function, and comfort. I chose a dining chair rather than a desk chair because I didn’t want something with wheels or that looked even remotely like a gamer chair, and I absolutely fell in love with this grey chair. It has a beautiful and unique shape, and the light grey really lightens up the room. Bonus: it turned out to be super comfortable, supportive, and the perfect height for a desk.
Vintage Flair Mid-Century Modern Chair in Light Grey by LumiSource ($189.15)Continue to 2 of 6 below.
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An Organized Desk
My old, very large desk crowded the spare room in my new apartment, so I opted for a writing desk with drawers so it still has space for my essentials. My style tends toward mid-century modern, especially for furniture, so I was immediately drawn to the lines and walnut-colored wood of this writing desk (this one is also a great option). The drawers were definitely a bonus, so I can hide away loose papers and notebooks when I’m not using them.
The geometric pen holder allows me to keep pens tidy and close at hand, and also has enough space for my watercolor brushes if I want to take a painting break. This pen caddy has a touch of rose gold if you want to add a bit more glamor to your space.
Baxton Studio Casarano Mid-Century Modern Dark Walnut and White 2-Tone Finish 2-Drawer Wood Home Office Writing Desk ($232.30)Continue to 3 of 6 below.
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One of my goals for my new office space was to have somewhere that made me feel equally productive, comfortable, and cozy, especially with the colder months approaching. A jute rug not only covers up the ugly, worn, and dated grey carpet, but it also adds texture and warmth to the room—and is perfectly on trend for this year. This woven area rug with fringe adds even more texture to a room. And a space just isn’t cozy without a wool throw blanket in a nice navy blue shade, which will come in handy as the days get colder.
Safavieh Natural Fiber Levi Braided Area Rug Or Runner ($24.98 – $776.98)Continue to 4 of 6 below.
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A Place for Hiding Clutter
I have to admit, my office tends to be the most cluttered area in my home by far. Between electronics, notebooks for work, and all the knitting, watercoloring, and other crafting materials I keep in this room, it can get chaotic pretty quickly. Behind my desk, I had an empty space with just enough room for a storage console and pretty woven baskets for some much-needed extra storage space. Plus, the console provides a surface for plants and prints that make a great Zoom backdrop for my meetings.
Furniture of America Nola Wood 1-Drawer Console Table in White ($193.97)Continue to 5 of 6 below.
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Inspiring Art and Warm Lighting
Over the years, I hung various cross stitches and pictures of friends on the wall in my office, but I wanted to really refresh the artwork and start from scratch. The modern print above my desk adds the right amount of color to the white wall, and it just happens to be inspired by one of my favorite places in Mexico, Teotitlán. It’s the perfect piece for me to look up at when I have writer’s block or just can’t stare at my screen anymore. For a more muted look, this boho arch print works just as well. A simple floral print and minimalist line drawing on the storage console have just enough visual interest without overwhelming the small space. And while I’m not sure I buy into the health benefits of himalayan salt, I do love the warm, relaxing glow a salt lamp provides to help me wind down from my work day.
MoDRN Natural Boho Pastel Arch Framed Art Print ($50.00)Continue to 6 of 6 below.
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Greenery and Pops of Color
I love plants, and since moving to an apartment with natural light in every room, I’ve been filling up every possible surface with more and more greenery. The office in my old apartment had almost no natural light, so my new office was the one room I had yet to add greenery to. Low maintenance houseplants, like pothos and snake plants, are perfect for a room where I may forget to water them from time to time. Plant pots in corals and pinks are an easy way I can add pops of color to the room, as well as some more mid-century modern flair. And now I have some new green coworkers that I can talk to or look at when I’m feeling stressed.
1/2 PCS Plant Stand Modern Tall Planter Holder Natural Wood Pot Shelf, Indoor/Outdoor ($24.99)