With back to school around the corner, it’s important for kids to have a space to study at home. Christa O’Leary, founder and CEO of Home in Harmony Lifestyle, a consultation company helping people to live their best life. As an interior designer, a marriage and family therapist, and a green living expert (as well as the mother of four), we are excited to shared some of her tips on how to create a chic desk on a budget.
Use Hat Boxes: A quick an easy way to create an organized space is to utilize pretty and functional boxes to hold your work space essentials. Head to Target, HomeGoods or Bed, Bath & Beyond and you will find a wide assortment of boxes that will hold a host of items. This can be much more cost effective than buying furniture storage pieces that can add up. It also is an added element that will allow you to bring your style to your work space.
Use Rugs: From a psychological perspective it is important to differentiate between spaces to help one's mind shift into the mindset of the activity ahead. Maybe you have a favorite reading or relaxation chair, your brain adjusts to the feeling and physical state just by thinking about it. Creating a space that is designated for a specific activity can help your student get into study mode. One inexpensive and fun way to spice up a space that might be multi-functional is to place a carpet under the desk. This helps to differentiate the space and help trigger the mechanics in the brain that will tell your student it is time to study. There is a plethora of shapes, sizes, colors and patterns that can help you create the foundation for your chic space.
Paint or Wallpaper One Wall: Paint and wallpaper can transform the look and feel of a space. Although these can be more cost effective in terms of achieving a wow-factor, it can be costly depending on the size of the space. One way to cut cost is to choose a focal point in the room where your desk sits and only add color to that wall. This can also help to differentiate the space as the designated work area.
Color Code: Color is often used to design inspiring interiors but it also can help create an organized space, helpful habits and clear thinking. Color coordinate subject binders with needed accessory storage containers so that you help your student develop an habits of organization. For example, if your student has a blue binder for math, make sure that all items associated with math are blue and pick up a blue container to place calculators, protractors and in my case ample erasers. This will help them focus on the task at hand, math, without getting side-tracked and distracted hunting for needed items.
Cover & frame a cork board with your favorite fabric: Fabric can be a fun, fresh, fantastic way to add pop to your environment. You don't have to spend $1000's reupholstering your favorite chair or having window treatments made. Instead find your favorite fabric and cover a cork board with it and hang it on the wall. This will help you bring your unique style to your space in a way that is both cost effective and multi-functional.
Hang Light with Cord: Good lighting is critical to optimum school performance. It can be costly to hire an electrician and put an overhead light above one's desk. Kids, teens and young adults tend to change their style on a regular basis so putting in a permanent light can be ineffective for both price and during the formative years of oscillating taste development. Finding a fixture that you can hang with a hook can be cute and differentiate you as a savvy shopper.
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