How to per­son­al­ize your home of­fice

Miami Herald (Sunday) - - HOME - Katie Laugh­ridge owns Kansas City in­te­rior de­sign des­ti­na­tion Nell Hill’s. BY KATIE LAUGH­RIDGE Tri­bune News Ser­vice

These last few months have been an eye opener for me in many ways.

Work­ing at home has led me to re­flect back on when I was newly mar­ried and in­volved in the quilt­ing in­dus­try. I spent many years work­ing re­motely from our lit­tle apart­ment and truly en­joyed it. It was a sim­ple time where I could work while wear­ing pa­ja­mas and multi-task my home chores with my pro­fes­sional ones while Brandon was out at his of­fice. These mem­o­ries fooled me into think­ing I could slide right back into that rou­tine dur­ing this pan­demic.

How­ever, work­ing at home the last few months has made me re­al­ize a few things.

First, get­ting any­thing done with a 3-year-old un­der­foot is an al­most im­pos­si­ble task, and sec­ond, with my whole fam­ily in our house I need a home of­fice that is truly mine to avoid the chaos.

I’ve found that it is not only im­por­tant for me to have a func­tional space, but also one that re­flects my cre­ativ­ity and style.

There are many ways to cre­ate a work­ing at­mos­phere that fits your per­sonal taste. Of­fices don’t have to be stark or dark in or­der to be a pro­duc­tive space. Bring­ing in fun fab­rics and tex­tures is my fa­vorite way to put a unique spin on a room, and an of­fice is no dif­fer­ent.

Wall­pa­per and win­dow treat­ments are a great way to add splashes of color and pat­tern with­out cre­at­ing clut­ter in your workspace. Bring­ing color into your of­fice looks amaz­ing and in­flu­ences your mind as well. Stud­ies show that color can im­pact not only your mood but your well­ness and pro­duc­tiv­ity.

Your seat­ing area is an­other place per­fect for a pop of per­son­al­ity. At home you aren’t lim­ited to a drab, stan­dard com­puter chair; you can pro­cras­ti­nate work in com­fort on a throne that fits into your aes­thetic.

Be­yond that, cre­at­ing a seat­ing nook apart from your main workspace is a nice and prac­ti­cal ad­di­tion. I some­times tire of sit­ting be­hind my desk and find that a change of scenery can help me re­fo­cus.

Hav­ing an­other space that of­fers seat­ing flex­i­bil­ity also comes in handy if you have vis­i­tors stop by, like when my “helper” Graham comes around to join me dur­ing the day. It gives him a spot close by to “work on progress and emails” (a phrase he picked up from his fa­ther) and keeps him within my sight. This area is also ideal for a rainy-day book read­ing marathon or to re­lax away from the main ar­eas in your home. You don’t al­ways have to be work­ing!

While it is easy to cre­ate clut­ter dur­ing the day (al­ways eas­ier to make the mess then to clean it), that doesn’t mean you should avoid ac­ces­sories in your of­fice.

A few well placed items can make your space feel more “homey” and re­laxed, tak­ing your room from a plain old of­fice to a re­gal study. Some of my fa­vorites in­clude plants, book­shelf baubles and tray decor.

I adore a well-stocked book­shelf. It is the per­fect place for small items such as ginger jars, trin­ket plates and so much more. Tray decor is an­other way to bring in per­sonal items and can eas­ily be moved around your room from desk to ta­ble to chair de­pend­ing on where you need it.

I hope that you are in­spired to cre­ate an oa­sis at your own home to find peace and fo­cus.


At home you’re not lim­ited to a drab of­fice chair — you can work from one that fits your aes­thetic.


A seat­ing nook apart from your main workspace can pro­vide a help­ful change of scenery.


A few well-placed items can make your space feel more ‘homey’ and re­laxed.

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