Learn how to create your dream Home office on a budget
Dreaming of the perfect home office? Follow my step-by-step makeover to create your dream home office. These organizational tips will help you design a space that works best for you. Let’s get started.
It’s January. There’s something about the promise of a new year that always gives me extra motivation to tackle tough projects. January feels like is a fresh start, and it’s no wonder that we get the urge to refresh and get organized. Christmas is over, and it’s time to get back to work. For me that means heading back to my home office since I work from home. And this January I decided it was finally time to tackle the project that I had been putting off for the past few years. Time to create my dream home office.
Last January I reorganized my pantry with the help of Better Homes & Gardens products from Walmart and it turned out amazing. Last summer I reorganized my boys’ study space using Better Homes & Gardens products. So it’s no surprise that when I think of organizing on a budget my first stop is Better Homes & Gardens products at Walmart.
Julie and I are honored to be part of The Better Homes & Gardens at Walmart Influencer Network. We love representing a brand that provides quality style at affordable prices. We receive compensation for our time and efforts in creating this post. Our convenient shopping links help support our blog work but add no additional expense for you. All our opinions are authentically our own, and as always, we hope you enjoy. Check out more ideas from the talented BHG Live Better Influencer Network this month.
My office has been on my to-do list for years. And for years I had been making up excuses. Beautiful photos had been catching my eye on Instagram and Pinterest, photos of beautiful pristine stylized workspaces that made me lust after a home office space of my dreams. But these photos also stopped me in my tracks for several reasons:
- Cost. I didn’t have a budget for new furniture and fancy new decor.
- Time. I didn’t have time for complicated DIY projects. I had work to do.
- Practicality. I saw plenty of photos of gorgeous office spaces with stand-alone desks situated in the middle of an empty room. Where was all the stuff? Where were all the files, the supplies, the books? I saw lots of beautiful office space ideas, but none delivered the practical storage and workspace I needed.
Do any of these problems sounds familiar? Every time I lamented about how messy my office was, I found myself stuck with too many road blocks and excuses that kept me from creating the space I craved.
Here are a couple of “Before” photos to give you an idea of how desperate the situation was. When a space is unorganized it can quickly become a “dumping ground” for everything that needs to be stored.
My Dream Office Goals
Since the office inspiration photos on Pinterest wouldn’t work, I started thinking about what would work. I needed my office space to include:
- A large desk. One that was big enough to hold two large computer screens and room for at least two people to sit and work side by side.
- Lots of storage space. I needed room to incorporate at least two filing cabinets, and shelves for books and supplies.
- A feeling of calm. I wanted the space to look and feel uncluttered and organized so that time spent in the office gave me space to breath and think clearly.
And all of this I needed to achieve within a budget of $500 or less. It seemed a daunting task.
Dream Home Office: 3 Step Planning Process
Step 1: Evaluate Current Furniture
First, ask yourself, which of your current furniture pieces:
- need to stay? In other words, which pieces do you like?
- can you work with?
- are too expensive to replace?
- are useful?
- can you get rid of?
Step 2: Re-imagine The Space
With these decisions made I started to re-imagine the space. With some pieces gone what space, if any, was free? And what pieces could I imagine in these spaces? I wanted to try to keep the desk and design around it. With the spaces empty to either side of the desk I started to imagine creating symmetry on both sides of the desk and both sides of the large window.
Step 3: Work with What You Have
I knew I couldn’t afford to buy all new furniture. And some of my existing shelves were already providing some useful storage that I really needed. My goal was to use what I had but make it look and feel more organized.
My solution? Organizing bins.
The big black computer armoire was too useful in terms of storage to get rid of. And the dark wood shelves were also useful storage pieces. In a perfect world I might have considered buying new furniture, but budget constraints forbid it. I also thought of how much I would love to paint all three pieces just to brighten up the room. Alas, I didn’t have the time to take on that project right now.
Instead I added cream colored fabric organizing bins from Better Homes & Gardens to the shelves to give a much more stream-lined, organized look. The light fabric instantly brightened up the dark shelves and brightened up the room.
I also used some wire frame baskets with cream colored liners. These add a fun industrial-farmhouse vibe without breaking from the black and white color theme.
Next, it’s time to get to work. Now that the planning stage is complete it’s time to make it happen.
5 Steps to Your Dream Home Office
Step 1: Take everything out of the room.
This may seem extreme, but you need to deal with everything and create a blank slate so that you can rethink the space.
Step 2: Purge and sort into three categories.
- Keep – and sort into piles of like items.
- Donate – what has value but is not essential to you anymore?
- Recycle/trash – have large boxes or bags ready to fill.
Step 3: Put together your dream home office.
Now let’s put the room back together. This is when all your hard work starts to pay off. It’s so rewarding to see the new space emerge. Hang in there. You’re almost done.
Don’t forget what this space looked like before:
Step 4: Deal with displaced items/trash.
Next up: Dealing with displaced items. Once the room is clean you need to get rid of or repurpose everything that came out of your office. Don’t delay in this step. It can be tempting to just focus on your beautiful new room and put this step off, but don’t. Otherwise you’re trading one mess for another. The feeling of accomplishment is so well worth the effort.
- Take Recycle and trash out.
- Take a trip to the donation center.
- Look at sorted items and start to think about how/where you will store these in your new space.
This is where the beauty of the bins really comes into play. They provide the perfect way to organize but they hide the items from view. And you can’t beat the price: $11.34 for a set of two.
Step 5: Decorating your dream home office
The final touch is to add style. Of course, this is the fun part. Add just enough to make it feel finished, but not too much so it feels cluttered. Just how much is a matter of personal preference. Enjoy letting your personality shine through these details.
Can we just pause for a moment and talk about these amazing lamps? Oozing style, these lamps are a statement. Gorgeous, affordable. I just might need more of them.
A plush white rug with a simple modern pattern brightens up the room and freshens up a dull carpet. Layering rugs really makes a room feel complete. This rug is both Julie’s and my favorite. We each own several. It’s stylish, affordable, doesn’t shed, wears well, and is super soft.
My Dream Home Office Decor Choices
To continue the feeling of organization I wanted to use symmetry and keep decor simple and streamlined. Modern lamps are the perfect accents. They provide a style statement, but they are also functional.
Two round mirrors also add style and increase light without distracting the eye too much. I love how they continue the simple geometric theme of the room.
Sleek faux plants add a touch of organic detail while keeping things streamlined. The plants and containers I chose fit the modern, minimalist style of my dream home office.
Modern minimalist style really works in an office because the focus is on simplicity. Keeping surfaces open and clear of clutter is the best decor element for any office. Now I have room to work and space to think.
For more ideas to transform your home office, check out HGTV’s article.
Time to Create Your Own Dream Home Office
Let this year be your year to stop making excuses and get to work creating the home you dream of. Take lessons from me and don’t allow obstacles to stand in your way. What I learned from this project is that my dreams are attainable. Images of Pinterest perfection should inspire, not discourage. Using Better Homes & Gardens products available at Walmart I’ve shown you that great style doesn’t have to mean high prices. I hope this transformation motivates you to tackle your own home organization projects. Because the home office of your dreams awaits.
Happy Organizing, Friends!