Home office inspiration

In my last post I wrote about getting rid of my guest room and my plan to create a dedicated work space using the whole room for both me and Jules. When I began my blog I very quickly realised that I needed a bigger workspace and so I did a cheap and cheerful home office makeover about a year ago, spending £150. At that time we kept the guest room double bed because my blog was very much a hobby so I didn’t need a huge amount of space and it meant we could maintain the luxury of a guest bed (plus, it was great to crawl into when I was doing a bit of hand sewing or just wanted a little afternoon nap – it always felt so much more comforting than our own bed).

However, I have now decided to try to develop my blog, make and sell some of my sewing projects and work with clients to try to improve their own homes so I  need a lot of extra space and storage. I don’t want to waste any of the time, effort and money we spent on creating my current work space and I also don’t want to make any permanent changes as life will probably change again sooner rather than later. So, I am giving myself a strict budget of £300, plus the £100 I sold our double bed for. This budget will need to cover:

– Desk chair for me:  £0

– 150 x 150cm desk for us to share: £75

– Storage shelves: £275

– Lighting: £65

– Flooring: £0

TOTAL: £415

Desk Chair

A very happy coincidence occurred the other day: I saw Aileen’s blog post about her new office on At Home In Love and ogled over her choice of desk chair and then I won a £100 Out There Interiors voucher as part of their Frame It Friday competition and they sell the same Eames style chair. Perfect! Budget remains in tact – thank you Out There Interiors!

Home office inspiration from At Home In Love blog

I love this Eames Style chair that forms part of Aileen’s new office on At Home In Love blog.

Home office inspiration www.apartmentapothecary.com

Image from Decor8 Flickr.


I’ve always loved the idea of having a square, central work table that can be completely flexible, you can walk round it, other people can sit round it with you, and you can access projects from different angles. That is what I want to create – Jules can have one side and I can have the other.

I am going to recycle and add to my current desk to ensure I don’t waste money on something we may need to change in a couple of years time. The top of the desk is a 220cm length of painted and varnished MDF that cost £40 to buy and paint. We are going to saw off 70cm from the end and buy another 150cm MDF length (£35), which will be supported by our two existing trestle legs, a set of drawers and four Ikea steel table legs for £40 to create a 150 x 150cm square desk that we will place in the middle of the room.

Home office inspiration www.apartmentapothecary.com

Image from Stadshem.

Home office inspiration www.apartmentapothecary.com

Image from Trendenser.


I really like the idea of hanging a pendant light over the desk; not only will this look great but I could hook it up so that it could be raised and lowered according to what I am working on, which makes it very practical. Loaf have got some lovely new pendant lamps as part of their new summer collection, which could be perfect at £65.

Home office inspiration www.apartmentapothecary.com

Loaf’s new ‘Workshop’ pendant lamp.

Home office inspiration www.apartmentapothecary.com

Image from Style Essentials Tumblr.

Home office inspiration www.apartmentapothecary.com

Image from Schlitzohren.


The bulk of my budget will be spent on a mid century shelving system for most of our storage needs. I’ve got my eye on one on eBay for £275 but I’m also so tempted by Nils Strinning string shelving system from Haus – I might be willing to spend my life savings!

Home office inspiration www.apartmentapothecary.com

Nils Strinning string shelving system from Haus.


I think I will do my new favourite trick and take up the carpet in the room and paint the MDF boards that are laid under the carpet, which won’t cost me anything as we have plenty of left over paint. I want to leave one wall completely bare and if there is a white painted floor this will make it like a mini-studio, perfect for shooting projects for the blog.

Home office inspiration www.apartmentapothecary.com

Image from Decor8 blog.

I’d better get on with it!

Katy x




  1. 31st May 2014 / 2:26 pm

    Look forward to seeing the finished article!

    I really like the idea of the pendant over a central desk to give it a workshop feel. And given your impressive storage/ organisation skills in your previous office makeover, I’m curious to see how you accessorize the shelving system. I love those kinds of open shelving, but I think I’d be prone to dumping stuff on them randomly which would somewhat diminish their design impact!


    • katy
      2nd June 2014 / 4:54 pm

      I agree, Kath. Shelving will be the main challenge – I’ll try my best! Thanks for your kind words about my previous storage solutions 🙂

  2. 31st May 2014 / 5:42 pm

    Oh this all sounds so exciting, and very well thought out! I love how resourceful you’re being. Can’t wait to see the finished space. 🙂 Leanne x

    • katy
      2nd June 2014 / 4:55 pm

      It may take a little while as I’m working full time until July!! Roll on summer! x

  3. Sarah
    1st June 2014 / 8:46 am

    I really, really like the idea of hanging a pendant lamp over your desk. I also love that grey one you’ve chosen. I may have to investigate further for myself 😉

    • katy
      2nd June 2014 / 4:56 pm

      Glad you like the idea, Sarah. I think we’re going to paint the floors a very pale grey, like we’ve done with our living room floors, so it should go well with them. Thanks for the comment 🙂

  4. 1st June 2014 / 9:43 am

    Can’t wait to see the result. Am in love with the string shelving system!

    If I ever get round to a work room I want to add a high working table for cutting fabric and stuff as I find bending over my dining table awkward.

    • katy
      2nd June 2014 / 4:58 pm

      I totally agree about bending over to cut fabric – nightmare! I always feel about 92 years old after a day of sewing 😉 I’m putting the desk top on adjustable trestle legs so I should be able to raise it if I need to.

  5. 1st June 2014 / 7:00 pm

    Ooo it all sounds lovely! I’d have say I’d be tempted with you on the shelving ;0) hey, whatever changes, they’ll always look great & be useful xx

    • katy
      2nd June 2014 / 5:00 pm

      My partner has bought me the String shelving system, Sarah-Lou! Woo hoo! Soooo excited. And you’re right, they will be totally flexible, which is the beauty of them, I suppose. x

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