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The arrival of our new pup back in August has had such a huge impact on our family. It really is like having a third child. Joyful but exhausting. When she finally goes to bed at night, Paul and I slump on the sofa with a glass of wine, zero conversation, and mentally prepare ourselves to do it all over again the following day. Although, it has to be said, she’s progressing far quicker than the boys ever did and already sleeps through the night at just 3 months old. It took them until way beyond 12 months, the little sleep-thieves. Beagle versus boys? Beagle wins!
As I work mostly from home, day to day, the biggest impact has been on me. Walks now feature more regularly in my working day, which for someone normally chained to their computer with eyes constantly on their ever-increasing to-do list, is no bad thing. In fact, while my work is now dispersed throughout the day and evening rather than concentrated between the hours of 9am - 3pm, I actually feel better for having regular fresh air breaks. It’s been a revelation.
Maybe a work/life balance isn’t about segmenting everything in to specific times of the day, but more so about doing a little bit of what you have to do alongside a touch of what you want to do? Either way, despite the pup exhaustion, the overwhelming feeling has been one of gratefulness recently; happy that I’m in a position to juggle work, the children, the house, the pup, and the garden breaks on my own terms (mostly) with only a minimal amount of tears and ready-to-drop early nights.
I don’t know whether it’s an upside or downside of being at home, but as the pup hasn’t had to get to used to her own company or being left for longer than a handful of minutes, she’s not happy if she can’t see someone close by. As I result, I’ve had to temporarily relocate my home office to the corner of the living room. Luckily, we have a shelving unit right next to the patio doors which has a small but perfectly formed desk space. With the addition of a few chic items from Studio, it’s been transformed in to a really lovely work-from-home office - although I do miss my docking station and monitor from upstairs but they’re too big to fit.
Want to know which stylish Studio pieces I’ve chosen to make my desk area a creative workspace? Read on!
First up, a chair. It had to be comfy, compact, and reusable in other areas of the home; not a full-on, permanent, oversized desk chair. Those who know me - or who read my blog regularly - will know that as soon as I spot a wood and white option, it’s difficult to convince me of another. So, it was love at first sight with this modern-looking Hex chair.
The white shell is moulded to the contours of the body, the wooden legs are a warm touch, and while it looks fab as an office chair, it would work perfectly in the kitchen/dining room or even in the corner of the bedroom as a clothes rest. The best bit? It’s only £59.99. For two. Yes, they come as a pair. AND, there’s a whole host of colours to choose from if you’re not as enamoured with white as I am.
If you follow me on Instagram, you might be thinking:
‘That’s not the cushion that arrived with your order. Where’s the one with the gorgeous gold and black stitching that you showed us?’
Well, what can I say? I went on a bit of a Studio shopping spree and not only did I buy a second Serene cushion, both of which now sit happily on my sofa, I also purchased two of these Tranquil cushions. I absolutely love the geometric, popcorn-like pattern and the cushion adds a little more comfort when tapping away at my laptop. Studio’s cushion range is amazing and pocket-friendly, too. I’m a fan.
While the room is flooded with natural light during the day, I tend to work early mornings and late evenings, pre and post the boys being up and about. A desk lamp is essential but with space at a premium, I had to hunt down a super slimline but still stylish-looking one. The Hayes LED touch desk lamp fits the bill perfectly.
Being white, it blends in to the background rather than being a feature - ideal for a small space where you don’t want accessories to pack too much of a punch. And it’s adjustable so I can position the head to where I want more light.
But my favourite thing is that the intensity of the light is adjustable as well with a quick swipe of the control on the base. It’s brilliant if you’re working while the sun is coming up or going down as you can add more light, or turn it down, as you need it. Genius for £19.99.
THE PRETTY THINGS
No creative workspace is complete without plants and pretty things … in my opinion, anyway. I love flowers but greenery has my heart. A few stems of eucalyptus popped in to a pretty, pearl vase offers not only something beautiful to look at but the most amazing smell while you’re working. Plus, eucalyptus lasts way longer than flowers and dries really nicely, too.
And then there’s stationery. I tend to buy mine from Katie Leamon but I love Studio’s personalised pencils. You can add a name or a motivational word or two on them, and they make a great gift. One to consider for stocking fillers - I know it’s only September but this is the month where I start picking up the odd treat or two for the boys so I can spread the cost slightly.
THE PERFECT PLACE FOR THE PUP
Desk area complete, there’s just one more thing to think about. Where to put the pup’s bed or blanket? I added this Matrix reversible rug initially for her but it looks amazing and really adds a touch of wow to the whole corner so it’s staying whether she chooses to sleep next to my desk area or not.
Made from polypropylene, it’s really durable and wipes cleaner than a more delicate fabric would. I’ve got it with the dark side up, but flip it over and the pattern is reversed. I currently have the 120x170cm but am keeping my fingers crossed that one day, Studio stock it in a larger size as I’d like a version for the centre of my living room. It looks so good.
So that’s my new home office corner. What do you think?
Before you go, if you’re a Studio fan and want to make your shopping experience even easier, the Studio app has now launched allowing you to browse the website and catalogues really easily on your phone. Check out the 'shop the look' feature for inspiration - I always find it helpful to get ideas of what and how things can be put together, particularly when it comes to fashion … my nemesis. And the app is going to be the first port of call for upcoming sales and deals announcements. Cool, right? Download the Studio app.