Over the years I’ve posted pictures of my office, usually to the horror and amusement of everyone, especially Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Noted Neat Freak, who always replies by posting pictures of her lavish office which is professional and spotless. If you haven’t see the pictures ( 2005 here, 2007 here, 2016 here) my office always looks like Staples threw up in it. But my entire cottage has now reached critical mass, so I’m rethinking everything, including whether I even need an office (“Why do we even HAVE this lever?”).
I’ve decided I don’t.
Every winter it gets really cold here. (Still haven’t replaced the single-pane windows, and plastic and thermal curtains can only do so much.) So I retire to the guest bedroom, aka Krissie’s room, which is 10×10 with doors (my office is open concept to the max), crack up a small heater and the electric mattress pad, and spend January and February in bed with my laptop. So today I looked at the stuff that had migrated in with me, which was pretty much pens and graph paper. The water carafe and cup, pens, power cords, and rechargers were already in here (I run a great guest room), Which made me think: what else would I need to move in here to have a minimalist but fully functioning office?
I came up with the printer, the scanner, printer paper and ink, both black and red fine point Sharpies. my clipboards with paper, and of course Post-Its, without which I cannot function.
When I asked Krissie what else a minimal office would need, she added clips (paper & binder clips of various sizes), pencils, eraser, non-sharpie gel pens, a stapler, staple remover, scissors and scotch tape, plus blank notebooks, legal pad, 3 ring binders and a three hole puncher. I added the stapler even though I probably wouldn’t use it, the scissors and the tape, but I draw the line at blank notebooks because I buy them (SO PRETTY) and then use graph paper. Same with legal pads: GRAPH PAPER OR DIE. Binders and a three-hole punch can stay in the workroom where I lost them months ago.
Then I added envelopes, stamps, and cards/stationary because they’re the one thing that doesn’t overlap between crafts and office.
It was a much longer list than I’d realized, too much to drag into a 10’x 10′ guestroom, but easily confined to a narrow table with one shelf and a wall unit in the living room beside the front door, which is where I drop the mail now, except it’s on a chair and I lose it.. Of course, all that office stuff is an ugly look for a living room, but I can work around that. I spent too much money on a wall unit I’m probably going to use forever that will hold most of it. The table is an old mission couch table I spray-painted white ages ago so it’ll look good. I bought a stapler and craft knives that are blue, a tape dispenser that’s a concrete rabbit, and a post-it dispenser that’s a bear, and I can put everything else into pretty cups and boxes. I’m gong to try covering the printer and scanner with contact paper. I won’t be fooling anybody that it’s posh home decor, but it should look fun, and most important, I’ll actually be able to find the stuff I actually use. And since I’m posting here about it, I’ll have to actually DO it because one of you will demand a picture. (There’s always one who wants a picture.)
I’ll tackle the work room later. Argh.
Here’s my list:
Bottom Shelf of Table:
So what did I miss? What can I get rid of that’s not really necessary?
Better yet, what’s on your list?