Whether you work from home full-time like we do, telecommute occasionally, or just need a good space to sit and ponder — having a study or workspace that you love (like our new space!) makes it easier and, in my opinion, more productive. I love the clean but bold vibe of this study/home office, and we’ve got 7 tips for bringing the look into your home. (image via Better Homes and Gardens)
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7 Tips for a Bold and Beautiful Study
1. Start with a neutral base — and add a twist
Unless you are born to be wild (yup, I’m singing the song) and bold by nature, you’ll probably feel more comfortable by starting with a neutral palette and accenting with the bold colors — and it will probably help make your office more productive, too, to be grounded with some neutral colors. (This also helps if you change your mind often or love to follow the color-of-the-year trends.)
But going neutral doesn’t mean it has to be traditional — I love the modern kick that this room has, right from the get-go, by using a darker neutral griege for the trim and doors and the lighter shade for the walls.
2. Go vertical
A ladder is a fun decorating accent — the wood gives natural tones to the space and can fit with just about any style! You can DIY one without too much hassle — build a simple decor ladder for around $10 or get a little gutsy and turn an old ladder into a ladder shelf. Leave it empty like this one or use it to store blankets or magazines, or use ribbon to tie on photo frames or other decor.
3. Add an impact piece
The large lighting fixture here definitely makes a statement and helps give the room its modern-edgy (is that a style?) feel. Try one of these lovely DIY styles to make the statement you’re looking for:
If your lighting preferences are more traditional, that’s okay, too! One large, high-impact decor choice helps bring the room to life, but it doesn’t have to be the light. It could be a chair, an art piece, or an accent wall if you’d prefer.
4. Choose your bold accent color
This room uses Radiant Orchid, the 2014 Pantone Color of the Year. If orchid isn’t your thing, find the color that is and splash it around the room — flowers, art, pillows, and rugs are great spots to add your bold color. And if you’re having trouble finding just the right color for your space in the decor store, DIY a solution! Try these easy DIY art styles for non-artists, or add the color you need to a rug with a bit of paint, like I did here.
5. Personalize the workspace
The most important aspect of a study workspace is that it works for YOU. Not that it’s what your neighbor, or your boss, or even your spouse loves (although if it’s a shared space, definitely find a happy medium so both you and your spouse can love it!). If you need a large workspace, a two person desk is a great solution. (We love ours, and you can build one for yourself following our tutorial!)
I love that our inspiration space uses a wide desk and then a comfy but stylish loveseat behind the desk — perfect for working or cozying up, or, if you happen to work with your significant other like I do, you can do both at the same time!
6. Mix it up
Part of being bold is knowing what you love and not being afraid to break the “rules”. Mixing up furniture styles is a great way to have pieces that you love and also giving the room a style that you love — YOUR style. If it makes you happy, it doesn’t matter what a designer would say. Not sure about mixing styles? Read these do’s and don’ts of mixing furniture styles from our lovely contributor Sarah, and then get shopping!
7. Don’t forget the rug!
You know I’m a big fan of colorful rugs (like this one or this one or this one or this one…). I just feel like a great, colorful rug that I love brings my space to life and makes it MY space. A great rug just finishes off the room, like a great pair of shoes or the right lipstick finishes off an outfit. I do most of my rug shopping over at Wayfair — watch for the special sales to snag extra awesome prices!
Need more inspiration to go BOLD in your office?
Check out these and more over on my Offices board.
More design and home inspiration in these other Get This Look posts: