Working from home can sometimes be a difficult task as there are always things to do to tidy up around the house. But even more difficult than working from home, is working from home in an office that is lackluster. An office that is unorganized, serves as a 'catch all', and where things are not so easy to find and there isn't anything pretty to look at, is not necessarily conducive to an inspiring or functional place to work. Well, this is exactly how my virtual client felt about her home office when she contacted me.
As a retired professor and now an educational consultant and avid DIYer of everything I can think of, she needed a multifunctional space. Let me give you a quick run down of everything she does in this space. She conducts educational research and writes proposals for her clients, and crafts all kinds of scholarly articles and scientific research projects. She sews like nobody's business - drapes, roman shades, dresses, and all kinds of outfits and costumes for her sweet little grand baby, and she crafts and does gift wrapping with all kinds of papers. You can read all about her and what she loves on her colorful and informative blog Casa Bouquet.
So why the list above? I wanted you to know what she has to do in this space, so I had to plan accordingly. I called this project Tropical G because of her love for Hawaii and tropical colors. She and her husband refer to their home as a Tropical Cottage and that it is. Her home is eclectic with a fun mix of furniture and it is FULL of color. And when I say color I don't mean your typical brightly colored floral pillow or painted accent wall. I mean serious color like turquoise bathrooms, Pantone's color of the year for 2014 - Radiant Orchid in the dining room with black floral print drapes, a citrusy lime kitchen with parrot wall paper, and a raspberry pink family room. I know I just made your eyes pop! =) But although each room has a different palette, the colors beautifully and unexpectedly blend. So taking cues from the rest of her home, the office needed to be colorful also.
A few more before shots.
What we needed to do to create a colorful, yet serene place to work:
- Paint - She had her heart set on a calm turquoisey green for the wall color by the time she contacted me. I actually tried to change her mind a bit, but in the end she won. Even as a designer you have to know which battles to fight. =)
- Organization - Files and folders, bookshelves, a cabinet of some sort, and baskets for odds and ends.
- A Work Surface - Ample space for spreading out client paperwork and sewing and crafting projects.
- Drapes - Privacy was not needed, but drapes would soften those hard lines and add some well needed color.
- Artwork - She has loads of pictures from Hawaii and lots of awards and college degrees. She is actually Dr. G! They needed to be showcased.
- Lighting - The space receives a nice amount of natural light, but can be a little dark at night. We needed to include general lighting and task lighting.
- Flat Screen TV - Possibly. The TV was an old box TV and took up too much space.
The Plan - Design Board
Since this was a virtual project - she was located in North Carolina and I in Georgia - our communications were virtual. From planning to almost execution, we met through Google Hangouts and all correspondences were through email and text. It was such a great experience working with her this way.
This in general was the overall plan. Don't you just love all the coral and turquoise paired with the crispness of the white. Ohhh...La...Laaaa....There were other detailed items, but this gives you an idea about our direction. The dresser in the plan was the jumping off point. She found this while on a trip to Morehead City, North Carolina. She texted me photos and expressed her undying love for this piece. I mean, undying love! It was a great fit for the look we were going for, it was scaled appropriately, and the color and carvings were lovely. So why not!
After approval, the plan was in motion! Stay tuned for the reveal and a few upcoming posts about how my client used her sewing skills for this project. She will be posting those over on her blog Casa Bouquet. You don't want to miss it!
To see more before photos also visit her blog. Thanks for reading!
Making Home, Home!