10 Ideas for giving your workspace a makeover
by Geneviève Donaldson
Your workspace needs to be a happy place. From choosing colour schemes to creating new table fabrics and mood boards, browse our 10 ideas for giving your workspace a makeover and changing the way you work and think.
As a graphic designer and artist, my workspace is desperately important to me and has to be a happy place to be in. Recently I decided to change a lot of stuff around in my workspace. I changed the table covering from a stark white to a vibrant blue and pink floral material, the arrangement of objects, and took everything off my mood board and started again. I found that by just simply changing the look of my surroundings, it gave the entire area a completely different feel. While I do enjoy a bit of minimalism, I really love the bold pattern on my desk, and the way it amplifies the colour of everything else in the space.
10 ideas to give your workspace a creative makeover
1. If you don't have a space for a workspace, make one! Whether it's as big as an entire room, or as small as the inside of a cupboard, view the space laterally (with the perspective of a bird and the imagination of an artist) and think about how you can make it work before arranging the objects and gizmos.
2. Use fabric to create a new table covering - it's amazing what a bit of pattern can do to change the look of a space. If your fabric is delicate and vintage, consider investing in a piece of plastic to cover it on the table - I found out the hard way on Monday night via a can of Jack Daniels accidentally knocked over while drawing. Suddenly having to break the nice creative mood to rip everything off the table and clean was not nice. The next day, a trip to Spotlight, and 2.5 metres of plastic trestle table covering later, all concerns about spilt cans were quickly admonished :)
3. Mirrors! If your space is particularly small, or it doesn't get a lot of light, using a mirror to bounce light from another idea into the space is a wonderful idea. It can also make the space appear bigger (and it's never a bad thing to have a bigger workspace!) You can even incorporate feng shui mirrors if you so desire.
4. If you do a lot of artwork on the computer (like me), add a few personal trinkets and pieces of your own design to the space to give it a bit of personality. It's nice when you're working hard, to see something and be reminded of a happy memory, or a piece of artwork that you're proud of creating.
5. Think about how to store tabletop items, like pens, pencils, drawing pins, paintbrushes, and paperclips. One concept I really like to utilise is to store them in various little glass vases. It's cute, interesting, and functional, all at the same time!
6. Where are your friends or family in your workspace? If you can't see them around in there, get a few happy snaps to pin up on a nearby wall or pinboard. If you don't like having personal photos, why not pin up a few pictures of someone who inspires you?
7. Consider how you use your space - the type of work you do, and how often you use certain objects or gizmos. When rearranging a space, it can be beneficial to have everything you'd like to use on there for a start, and then over time, edit the idea to take out what you're not using, and rearranging what you use the most. Edit your workspace to have oft-used things to hand.
8. Create a workspace with a specific colour scheme in mind - it can really give a lot of punch to an area. I picked blue, because it's my favourite colour. You don't need to paint, or sometimes even to buy anything - work out a colour palette that makes you feel lively, and get decorating with items you already have, that fit in with the colour scheme. Change your computer desktop background to match or complement the new colour scheme. The results can be really beautiful and personal if you think laterally, creatively, and concentrate on filling the space with things you love.
9. A mood board, or inspiration board, can be a wonderful way to organise creative thoughts, keep clippings that you like from magazines, even tags from clothing, bits of material, and recipes. When it's feeling a bit staid, change things around :)
10. The most important thing is that the space inspires you to get proactive about working in it. That's why it's called a workspace! Decorating it just makes that space more interesting and fun to be a part of. Enjoy your workspace - and enjoy the work you do in it.