One thing I’ve come to realize over time:
Working from home doesn’t mean you have to sit at home.
I’ve been in this industry a long time. I’ve been paid to scrapbook on a regular basis or create art since 1999. We’re talkin’ 15 years.
As a person who works from home, I had always made my office as ‘convenient’ as possible. Everything I used most needed to be at my fingertips so that I had to get out of my chair very little. Here are a couple photos of what my office used to look like.
(This was after QVC. And I still had another tall cabinet that stood on the wall just to the right.
This is where my green credenza now sits.)
Years of this ‘sitting with things at the fingertips’ thing.
All I have to say now is, What was I thinking???
I can’t tell you how many times I referred to that chair with contempt and disdain. I hated sitting in that chair.
Or maybe it was more resented. That might be a better word.
Sometimes I felt like my ‘behind’ was permanently glued to it.
When my job scope changed a bit–meaning, no more QVC that I did for six years–and I could scale back on product in my office, I was feeling more free. More space.
But still, too much stuff. I had stuff stuffed everywhere. Dan was floored at how much stuff I had packed way in the drawers and cabinets! Even in the corner behind the filing cabinet drawers that matched the desk. Great place for hiding oodles of empty albums.
Then came the remodel–which is still a work in progress.
(that chair doesn’t deserve to be in this photo. it’s gonna be replaced.)
I had certain criteria in mind. The first being that I wanted my desk to stand just a few inches taller (32.5”) than your average desk (29”) so that if I stood at it to make a page, I wouldn’t have to hunch over as much like you normally would at a standard desk. Not only that, I can stand to type on my computer and feel comfortable. Now, I most likely wouldn’t design on my computer that way, but I can do other busy work and not need to sit down or hunch over. And I’m only 5’ 4”, by the way.
The second thing I wanted was for it to be open so that when we had parties then there’d be plenty of space in our family room and office area. Before, I had a section of desk that separated the two areas.
In addition, I wanted a large cabinet that housed not only my printers and electronics so they’d be out of site (they are such an eyesore, aren’t they?), but it needed to be tall enough to handle two shelves of 12×12 cardstock as well as some nice drawers for storage. All combined, it brings it to about 42” tall.
That’s pretty tall for a cabinet, but I love it! I’ve worked at that surface with my Silhouette and my laptop and it’s awesome. I’ve written just about all my History Project journal there and it’s like I’m sitting at a desk…only I’m standing. And I’m finding that I like creating my pages here, actually.
And then the last piece we added was the green garden credenza, that we refinished, by the way. (That’s what it was labeled and I like it. :) )
It sits at an even different height–a little higher than my desk. Perfect spot for my Genesis Trimmer (also love), which is just a little turn after cutting on my Silhouette so I can trim what I need to and put the cardstock away. I loved this piece not only for its design but that amazing surface! Three completely different surfaces, great for photographing on–and it just adds character to the place instead of having the Danish furniture that I had (way pre-IKEA).
I wanted my office to be an extension of the family room, which sits on the opposite side. I wanted it be more furniture and less ‘office.’
And now that it’s done, I have three words to say:
I love standing.
Why didn’t I do this before? Not only is it just fun to stand from time to time, but moving is so much better for you (okay, at least it’s better for me). I like moving from surface to surface. And I love the space.
I can’t explain it, but it just plain ol’ makes me happy.
I love feeling free and not being tied to that chair.
I love feeling that I’m getting more ‘exercise’ because I’m moving and working.
Just to be clear though, I can–and do–sit plenty of work time too. I can’t design standing up, but I can create pages or craft or type standing up. I can email standing up or peruse the internet. It makes for a good mix. Plus I can dance when a good song comes on. ;)
So that’s my new philosophy: Just because you work at home doesn’t mean you have to sit at home. And you don’t have to remodel to do it either. If you want to explore height possibilities, find ways of altering your current setup. You could maybe set your desk on bed extender legs or a 2×4 piece of wood or something. Try it. See if you like it. And if you can’t or don’t need to adjust furniture, just try standing to mix it up.
I feel completely content with this new way of work. It’s been a long time coming.
It’s happiness for me.
It works for me….and I don’t have to sit to do it.
Because I know I’ll be asked. the cabinets and desk were custom made. The credenza was a one-of-a-kind piece purchased from Osmond Designs. The desk idea I got from HERE, but I had them add shallow drawers to it. Love it. Love the openness of it. The cords will be hidden behind the legs eventually, by the way. I hate seeing cords. :)