Ditch the chaos: creating the environment for effective planning II.

Hello lovelies, it's been too long since I've last posted, but as for most of us, the beginning of this year has been filled with challenges and deadlines. I've also been planning a huge blog series that I will be releasing this week, so stay tuned for that!

Today, as a second part of my "Ditch the chaos" series, I've prepared a short overview of my current studio, the space in which I live and work. 

Many things have changed since I last posted about my workspace (check out last year's design and setup here), and I've also found out a couple of handy tips and pointers along the way, that I decided would be worth sharing with y'all. Last year, I talked about how a well organized environment can enhance planning, organizing and productivity, and along the road I myself have strived to create an organized environment where I can maintain a comfortable level of structure, without having to constantly spend hours cleaning and tidying up. I gave detailed tips on how to set up a maintainable system for storing and organizing your items or supplies - whatever they may be - with small effort and without spending a lot of money. But I found that keeping everything neatly tucked in its place still wasn't enough for me, as I grew more and more anxious and unhappy with the space I spent most of my life in. I've found a solution though, and it was quite simple: I needed to redecorate, and I was on a budget! My space felt tired and cluttered, it lacked the vibe of my current style and state of mind, and I desperately needed to make it into a space where I not only felt comfortable and put together, but also happy, a space where I could be happy to spend time in! Here are my pointers on achieving a space that sets you up to tackle the world:

1. Define your space
Is it your bedroom? Your craft room? Home office, or just a nook in any part of your house where you sit down to unwind, put your thoughts in order and plan your daily life and work? The logistics don't matter, and you don't have to have the luxury of a huge, separate room designated solely for your work and planning. You have to define it, however, in order to work out what kind of functional details you have to leave in or incorporate in your new space. For the sake of an example, here's my definition of my space:

I call the room I work in my studio, even though it's basically my bedroom. Besides sleeping there though, I also spend most of my days working in it, since I work from home and don't have a separate home office. So what I needed was a functional setup that incorporated my work supplies and personal area, without having to compromise in any of the two fields.

2. Set your budget
Sometimes we need to set boundaries in our spending weather we like it or not. And although it's tempting to buy everything from the homeware store of your choice, we need to keep our eyes on the prize, and the prize is a pretty and functional workspace, so the number one rule is: buy only what you need, but keep it pretty! My budget for revamping my space was 250 dollars, and with a lot of DIY's, I've managed the following changes and purchases:
- new carpet, desk chair, curtains, bed spread, pillows and blanket
- painted my walls and some furniture white
- bought a vintage lamp and jewelry holder from the flea market
- made two pillow covers with hand painted fabric
- made a gallery wall with my own artwork and flea market picture frames
- made my own shelf to store supplies
- made a DIY inspiration/bulletin board
- bought some storage boxes and containers for my art supplies
- a couple of additions: candle holders, a makeup mirror, an owl figurine, a ceramic house that stores my loose change

3. Define your style
I've talked about this in my Plan your decorating post, so check that out for more in-depth pointers on this topic, but basically you just need to set a theme, any theme really, that suits your style and your space. Read my post about choosing themes, colors, patterns and designs for a coherent, polished and original look. Since we're talking about re-vamping a space rather that a total makeover, you do need to keep in mind that you may have pieces of furniture or decoration that you may have or want to keep, so with this in mind, choose your new additions accordingly.

Tip: everything doesn't have to be all matchy-matchy in order to seem clean and put together. Mismatching different styled items can make a space original, homey and lived-in, and sometimes, the most unexpected, different items can create a beautiful unity when placed next to each other. 

I didn't go all crazy with the mismatching, but my space is basically a blend of old and modern items. I'm not an interior decorator by any means, but I found that the more different era or style two items are, the more they go hand in hand. When creating my gallery wall, I made sure that every single picture frame is a different style and size, and rather than positioning the artwork symmetrically, I made it into a kind of jigsaw-pattern. I also had 3 pieces of furniture that I knew I would be keeping in my room: an antique desk and two matching closets. In addition, I bought in two statement pieces, both as modern as it can get: a geometric-print rug and a white plastic chair with also a geometric cutout print.

4. DIY the shit out of it!
Pardon my french, but there's just no other way to put it :) Basically, your workspace should not only look, it should feel your own, so don't be afraid to do some tweaks and hacks to things that you like, but are not exactly suited for your needs or style. DIY-ing can also be a huge money saver. Instead of buying old furniture, use spray paint to re-vamp your existing pieces to better suit your style.

Tip: Using a good quality primer and spray paint will make your job a hell of a lot easier, since the paint won't chip on the long run.

You can also do small DIYs without being too much of a crafty-crafter. In my color scheme, rose gold was my accent color, so I painted some of my art supplies containers gold, and added a simple canvas wall art with rose-gold geometric shapes. I also made a custom accent pillow with some left over curtain fabric, handmade tassels and custom painted it with a super easy dotted print.
5. Search for hidden treasures
Nothing makes a space more homey and original that small pieces that really add personality to it. Weather it's a vintage photo frame or salvaged-wooden desk, don't hesitate to search in antique shops or your local flea market. Not only will you save money, but you also bring texture and personality with these terrific pieces into your workspace.