Studio Makeover >> Inspiration for A Home Based Workspace

Lately I’ve been really missing my days of having a studio and office space away from our house.  My old studio was really amazing and I was so lucky to have it.  The space was huge, with separate rooms for my office and design studio, as well as a shipping area.  My employees and I worked from it everyday, and it felt so good to come home at night and know that I left work in a space separate from where I lived.

When I moved back to Chicago a few years ago, it was right when the beginning signs of the recession started to appear.  Between sales slowing down and the much higher commercial rental prices here in comparison to Indianapolis, it made sense to work from home.  There are definite perks to not having to change out of your pajamas for work (!), but it can also be a challenge to do things like, I don’t know, stop working before 2 AM.  It can also be difficult to fully concentrate on work when, despite my best efforts to convince myself otherwise, I’m constantly aware that I’m technically at home.  I have to make a conscious effort to remind myself that my job and my life are two different things, and that can be a job in itself.

In order to create a solution for these work-from-home trials, I decided that it’s time for a studio makeover.  I’ll be honest with you guys.  I am an incredibly disorganized person, and there are piles of Mountains of the Moon and Bubby and Bean madness all over our house.  I also work between a loft area and a guest bedroom (that is still used for guests and contains a bed, mind you), and sometimes I get in the habit of bringing my laptop down to the living room and working there as well.  All of these things add to the challenge of separating work from life. I know that reworking my studio/office into a completely separate place that is specifically dedicated to work would be a major step in the right direction.  And if I make this space beautiful and energizing, I’m pretty sure my creative flow will be much more, well, flowing.

I figured that the best way to motivate myself to put together a new and improved work space would be to search for other work spaces that I find inspiring.  The images in this post are my favorites.  Some of them contain specific design elements that I find appealing, and others just evoke an overall feel that I really love.

My next step is printing out all of the images I’ve collected and creating a new inspiration board that I can hang in the space (which will either be the guest room with the bed dismantled, or the basement) and refer to it as I start the makeover process.  Things are so busy right now, so I’m not sure when this semi-massive project will be completed, but I’ll be sure to share the before and after once it is.

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1. & 2. Each of these spaces as a whole is gorgeous, but it is specific elements of each that strike me.  The shabby chic room on the left feels so airy and calming with the white linen table cover and window above the desk.  And the bowl of lavender is the perfect touch to create simple inspiration (flowers are wonderful like that, aren’t they?).  The more industrial space on the right is defined by those lockers, which are visually stunning, and would create the perfect storage for my paper, fabric swatches, and art supplies. Images both found via Rue Magazine.

3. I love this workspace at Public School, an Austin-based creative collective.  A chalkboard wall would be so fun, and I feel like simple, neutral work spaces like these would provide the perfect blank canvas for creativity.  Images via From Your Desks.

4. Although this space wouldn’t be nearly big enough for my studio, I think having a cozy, bright place for my office space would help motivate me to do all that not-so-fun paperwork and daily tasks.  Found via Wunderweib.

5. I like how this space is sort of set up to be a little cluttered and still look beautiful.  As much as I LOVE the idea of a really clean, modern, minimalist studio, the reality is that I would eventually create a mess.  That’s just how I am.  A rustic space with lots of little objects might seem less chaotic once I actually started working in it and the piles started forming.  Image found here.

6. This is something I could definitely do in the basement.  And a desk like that would be perfect to use for both office work (check out the nifty paper storage) and sketching/design work.  The open and airy feel is really nice too.  The big, covered bulletin board on the wall would be perfect for tacking up random inspirations.  Image found here.

Do you work from home?  If so, what are the things about your workspace that your find the most inspiring?  What elements would you like to change?

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