{ Day 6: The Office }

To me, my office seems to be a great dumping ground! In my house the office and craft area are combined, so I essentially have 2 rooms crammed into one space.  I am no where near what I would like this room to become, but here is where it is so far:

We have this HUGE add-on to our house {one of the main reasons we purchased this one!} We have divided it into office/craft room and toy/playroom. As you can see in the before picture, there was no real designated space. Kids toys would constantly creep into the office... driving me nuts!

So, a couple weeks ago I decided I would change that! I reconfigured my existing furniture to create a divider between the two rooms. Now, this is not what my ultimate plan is. I would love to have both walls in the office lined with cabinets and a "L" cabinet coming off the left wall {in the pictures} with a large butcher block counter-top working space. This plan gives me tons of needed storage space... with LOTS of counter work space for packaging sales, scrapbooking, sewing, cutting fabric, etc. But, alas, for now it is a dream! I will need to sell a lot of blankets and burp cloths to get there! {Here's hoping!}

I don't have a cleaner, more current, office picture to share because I have a craft fair tomorrow and my office/craft room is a current DISASTER! But, once it gets cleaned up I am going to post some pictures of my nice, neat organized office. For now, you will get bits and pieces.

Here is some inspiration to help motivate us all!

{Pottery Barn}

This home office design also serves as a sort of command central.

{I Heart Organizing}

Just because it is a home office doesn't mean it can't be beautiful! I would love to spend my time working in Jen's space! She has everything simple, neat, and organized. Keeping it simple is the key!

{Real Simple}

If your office is on the small side, make use of your vertical space! Wall shelves are a great way to increase your storage space. Find cute decorative boxes to store your supplies and add some color to your office space. But still, simplicity is the key. Remember to purge!

• • • • •

Whether you have a large office space, or a small one, there are lots of tips and tricks to making it work. Remember my post on creating Command Central... and those cute file folders we were adding to organize our mail, bills, etc.?? Well, once a week you need to empty out those files! Here is what I do:

Once a week my files are emptied in to one of two drawers. My family file drawer, or my business file drawer. Each category has it's own folder. Each folder is clearly labeled so that I can find what I am looking for at a quick glance.

Now, what about all of those manuals from every electronic device, baby item, or power tool that you have purchased? I keep those in a file cabinet in my garage. I have tried to combine like items together. Then I store them in plastic sheet protectors and file them in my cabinet drawer. Why sheet protectors? It keeps them safe, but I can also see what is inside each one at a glance. Then, once I year I can go through them and throw out anything that we don't have anymore. I store them in the garage because, really, how often do you go get those out and read them? I don't need them in the house because they aren't something I am looking at frequently.

I have tried to conserve precious desk space {so that I still have room to work} by having a friend create me a monitor stand. I have had this for years... and to say I love it would be an understatement! It is large enough that I can slide my keyboard under it when it's not in use. On top I keep a square notepad and my wireless router. I totally need to come up with something for all of my cords... but that may be a project for this weekend!

One of the newer additions to my office space is this cute paper organizer from Costco. The bottom tray holds all of my scratch paper. My daughter knows just where to find it when she wants some paper to write on. I also use my scratch paper for quick shopping lists {if I'm running to a store for a couple items and don't want to forget anything} or for writing myself little notes. It also holds my different kinds of paper for the invitations that I sell, along with a place for me to place my completed orders before entering them in my spreadsheet and filing them for good. {It is pretty empty right now since my shop is on vacation.} I use the top shelf on it for my "work in progress" orders. This nifty organizer can be mounted on the wall, or placed on a desk. Mine sits on top of this little drawer organizer that I found at Lowe's.

As you can see, I had this small area between my desk and the wall of the little desk cubby area {for lack of a better term}. When I saw this drawer unit I had to get it! It holds my tapes, paper clips, binder clips, business return address labels and packaging supplies, business fabric tags, sewing patterns, heat 'n bond type items, lollipop sticks, my glue gun and glue stick refills, and much more!

• • • • •

So, now that I have given you a brief tour of my home office space, how do we go about organizing it/keeping it organized?

Step 1: PURGE!
One reason the office space tends to be so disorganized is that we try and keep too much "STUFF" in it. Go through your old files. If you are holding on to paperwork from more than 1 year ago, shred it and recycle the paper.
Suze Orman {or as I like to refer to her as the financial guru} has a great list of how long to keep financial records. Print it out and refer to it as you go through your files this weekend!

• • • • •

If you have been through a couple mortgage companies over the years and have records from different banks, consider labeling your file "Mortgage" instead of the banks name. This keeps all "like" paperwork together. I also keep a "Misc." file folder in my drawer for things like: DMV registrations, the tree trimmer, AAA membership, Costco membership, etc. Things that only happen once a year that you don't need an entire file dedicated to.

• • • • •

If you have a desk drawer for files, great! If you don't, you can get a file cabinet like one of these:

{Pottery Barn}

or a file box like this one:

{The Container Store}

or a rolling file cabinet to stick under your desk like this:

{Courtesy of Sassy Kathy}

Keep your essential items within reach. Whether it's in a top desk drawer, on a pegboard behind your desk, a couple mason jars on top of your desk, a small drawer organizer, etc. The things you use everyday in your office should be within grasp while you are working. Things like:
• pencils
• hi-lighters
• post-its
• paper
• stapler
• paper clips/binder clips
• tape
• rubber bands
• scissors

Figure out a way to make use of your space so that these things are easily located. If your space is limited, add some wall shelves and place those items in decorative glass mason jars. IKEA has fantastic storage solutions for small items such as those listed. If you are lucky enough to be close to an IKEA, go check out what they have to offer!

As part of your nightly 10-minute clean-up, take a minute or so to de-clutter your office. Put away the items you used and ran out of time to put away earlier. Use your weekly schedule to include time for filing your bills, and important paperwork so that those items don't pile up in your command central.

As I said before... keep it simple. The less "stuff" you keep in your office the cleaner and more organized it will be. Stay tuned in the next couple weeks for a day of how to organize your home business {Etsy shop, online shop, what have you}.

Have a great weekend! I am off to my craft fair tomorrow then... time to work on my OWN office!

On Monday: Organizing your Purse/Diaper Bag and the car!

1 comment

  1. new follower!! i absolutely ♥ this post - it's very inspiring! i would love to be able to organize like this, but with an 8 month old and a 2.75 year old it just feels impossible!! can't wait to read your 'organizing the diaper bag/purse/car' post!! hope you don't mind if i link to this one!


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