How to Create a Functional and Beautiful Workspace

If you work from home, you probably know the struggle of finding a balance between comfort and focus.  Working from home can be great: no dress code, flexible schedule, and so on but you also need to find what actually works for you when it comes to staying focused and inspired. As many small businesses and freelancers know, it can be difficult to find the sweet spot for work in a small space. Since entrepreneurs have enough challenges to deal with, I wanted to share some tips on how to create a functional and beautiful workspace for your home and life.

Assess Your Space & Needs

Take a look at the space you have and think about what can realistically be done with it. I’m usually working at our dining room table or the couch. Honestly, we don’t have room for a decent desk and while I would love one – I don’t absolutely need one. Instead, I have a lovely, little filing cabinet to hold all of my office supplies and do my best to make the space around me inspiring. It works well with our home, gives me everything I need, and keeps me inspired. I’ve got room to move around and can always go out to a coffee shop if I’d like. So take a look at your space and think about your needs:

What do you need to fully accomplish your work? Anything like storage, large work table, desk, and even things that help you stay inspired and focused.

Then consider what does your home have room for – can you work from a small desk or do you need a dedicated room for your job? Don’t be afraid to think outside the box and if your situation isn’t ideal, know that it doesn’t have to be forever. Make a list of “must haves” for your workspace and “nice to haves.” Maybe you don’t need a desk, but you need a cute cabinet to hold your supplies. If you’re like me and you don’t have an office, find ways to make the rest of your home inspiring and help you stay focused. Figure out what works best for you and don’t be afraid to be a little unconventional!

Find Pieces in Your Budget

Think about everything you need to purchase and figure out what you are willing and able to spend. Once you have this number, decide on the pieces you want to splurge on and the pieces you can save on. Look for pieces in your favorite shops, but don’t forget about places like Amazon and antique stores. Deciding where you can save and looking in a variety of places can help you stay in budget and have a few pieces you’ll love for years to come.

Gather Inspiration & Create a Moodboard

After you’ve thought about what you need and what will work, take some time for the fun part – getting inspired. This can include anything from browsing Pinterest to visiting an interior designer or showroom. Mike & Brittni both know how much I love visiting Schoolhouse Electric here in Portland, and while I can’t buy everything it gets me inspired and thinking about the aesthetic I love! Take time with this step and make it fun.

Once you’ve found the look you love, curate a board on Pinterest or go old-school and create a physical one from prints or using our free moodboard template for Photoshop! You can download a free trial here. Figure out what you are really in love with and keep it somewhere you can look at when you shop. Here are a few of our favorite functional and fun workspaces!


Photo credits clockwise from left to right: One, Two, Three, Four and Five.

You can find more workspace inspiration on our Pinterest board. Do you have any tips for to create a functional and beautiful workspace? We’d love to hear them in the comments below!

Author: Alex Austin

Alex is Station Seven’s right-hand gal hailing from the friendly Midwest and now living in the beautiful Pacific Northwest. A strategizer at heart and social media wiz, Alex has a passion for engaging with creatives and empowering them to accomplish big things in biz and blogging. When she’s not busy being awesome online, Alex loves to spend time traveling, watching films at her local theater, and slow walks around her neighborhood. She’s also a talented creative herself and the maker behind Midland Candle Co.!

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  • I’ve gone through a few iterations on my own workspace. I work from home and I live in a studio so deciding where to put my desk/work corner took a while. After trying out several spots I decided to face my desk against my large window so I get a nice view of palm trees. Next on my list is to style my actual desk a little more. :)

    • Hi Aimee! Yes, windows are THE best. Natural light is my favorite asset to any working space and luckily our home has a lot of it in the main living area! I think that you’ve got your desk near a window, where you can look away from the computer screen for a little break, styling your desk will really give your space the “thing” it needs! I love buying cute office supplies 😂so go have fun for me!

  • Ahhh so much inspo! I have such a (bad, bad, bad!!) habit of just working off the couch, or from bed, or basically anywhere where I can get a little too comfortable. These workspace tips are exactly what I need – especially since I’m planning to make it a priority to create a “just for working” workspace in 2018. I love the tip about assessing what is a “must have” and what is just a “nice to have.” Thanks for such an awesome piece of content!

    • Hey Sydney! Yes, it can be such a struggle at times to get motivated and work somewhere productive. One thing that’s helped me is getting ready in the morning to really wake myself up! Thanks for your kind words and good luck with your new workspace in the new year. :)