Home office hacks for when you need it most.
Posted on March 31 2020
How to work from home with the home you’ve got.
“This is as nice as it gets.” It’s a statement that wouldn’t be considered normal for an influencer-conscious, social-media savvy millennial describing her work space, but for Jenna van Klaveren, new life circumstances have brought her far from normal. “It’s my parent’s computer room.”
When we started our search for the most inspiring home offices, we soon realized that terms like “the best” and “most inspirational” weren't necessarily needed or realistic for many of us. Instead, we decided to focus on how to work with what you’ve got for what you need.
“It’s a struggle,” says Jenna, a Project Manager who works to develop neighbourhoods in her city, and who’s living with her parents during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“My team is connected online and through video chats, so that keeps my spirit up and reminds me of why we do what we do. Oh, and plants. Plants help! So does being able to see a street, and life happening despite everything going on.”
For many of us, the shift to work from home comes with uncertainty. While some have been doing it for years and have dedicated spaces - maybe even home offices - others, like Jenna, are struggling to create a space that fits their living situation and also their work.
Rachel Connell, photographer, is familiar with this issue.
“I live in a TINY apartment so I needed a work space that wouldn’t be bulky or take up my whole living room,” explains Rachel.
“So I got a kitchen “island” extension that’s sort of like a breakfast bar. It’s up against a wall, and I bought stools that slide right under so it’s easy to have it put away when I want to have friends by!”
For the Tiny Apartment Where the Creative Resides
Living in a small space doesn’t mean you can’t work there, too! Make your work space work for what you need: dedication to your craft.
Colours from the orange and yellow family are known to bring out joy, enthusiasm and creativity, but don’t worry - your home doesn’t have to blind you. Try softer or deeper colours within the family, like “It’s My Party” from Beauti-Tone Paint. This shade takes you from your daily duties to your evening’s event without effort.
For the “B2B” Professional
It’s time to get B2B: Back to Business.
That’s why Sarah Wight, a marketing strategist, chose to create a space that was clean, modern and organized: all in her bedroom.
“I have a proper desk, chair and I’ve framed my favourite travel photos,” says Sarah.
Creating a gallery wall is a great way to carve out personalized space for your home office, wherever it may be.
It creates structure and gives a wall space a sense of purpose. Depending on the art, they can also add a burst of colour, or remind you of life outside of the laptop.
For the Work-from-Home Parent
If you’re a parent, you’re a pro at going with the flow, and finding quick fixes for what you need. For Event Producer, Client Services Director, and full-time mother, Katie Rakoczy, going with the flow flowed right into her backyard.
“I turned my backyard “cuchina” into a “quarantina”, explains Katie. “Our converted shed is now my office!”
A space to connect, then disconnect.
No matter the size of your home, there is room for you to be focused and productive. With the right colours, and maybe even a window to catch a glimpse of life outside your door, any space can be your workspace. To make it your own and a place that you look forward to being, bring in the things that bring you joy: colour, art, plants, coffee, planners - anything!
More importantly, your work-from-home space should facilitate connection: connection with your colleagues and outside life. And just as important as it is to connect, it’s as equally important to disconnect. Turn off the computer, step away from your work space, and step into your living space. We hope that’s just as colourful, too!