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7 top tips for a stylish (and functional) home office - Julie Cowley Interiors

Julie’s 7 Top Tips For A Stylish (And Functional) Home Office

So… who loves to sit down and do their book work every week?  Yeah me neither!

But having a home office space that feels beautiful and organised will surely make the weekly chore a bit easier, right!?

 Here’s my top tips for decorating a home office space…

1.  The Right Desk

Before you go out and buy the prettiest desk you can find, think about the functionality of the space first! What activities happen at the desk? How many people will use the desk at any one time? How much space do you need? What needs to be on your desk? A computer? Maybe 2? A printer? How big is that printer? Room for an in tray? Let these questions guide you first. Also consider the surface of the desk top. You’ll want to invest in something that will stand the test of time. And if you’re anything like me, and your assistant’s writing tool of choice is a texta 🤨, an easily cleaned surface is a must!

For a simple contemporary look, the Trestle Desk from Mocka is a favourite.

Image via Mocka

The Bailey desk from Globewest gives a modern industrial vibe to a space – and it has drawers!  Winner!

 Image via Globewest


2.  A comfy seat

How many hours is your butt gonna be in that chair? Heaps, right! So please invest in a comfy chair! Now, that doesn’t need to be big black ugly swivel chair (yeah, I’m looking at you hand-me-down-JCI-office chair!) If a swivel chair is a must, there are heaps available these days that are stylish too! But, if your chair doesn’t need to spin, consider a dining room chair… there are a million of these out there!

The Lennox chair from Globewest combines functionality with style… see swivel chairs don’t have to be ugly!

Image via Globewest

The Ellis chair from MRD home is ticking the boxes for me!  

Image via MRD home


3.  Up the comfort factor

Cushions and throws don’t just have to be for the sofa! Find a gorgeous cushion or throw and pop it on your office chair. Try a small lumber cushion for something stylish and comfy.

The Ramie lumbar cushion from Feather and Oak comes in a range of gorgeous colours to suit a variety of interior styles.  Stacey really does have something for everyone!

Image via Feather and Oak

The Mira Linen Cushion Cover – Ana from Cultiver is divine!  It also comes in a lumbar size!  Yes please!

Image via Cultiver


4.  Storage, storage and more storage!

Have you seen those Pinterest worthy office inspo pics. A beautiful desk and chair. A lone computer on the desk. Not a paper in sight. Me too… but seriously where are these people keeping their 7 years worth of records? Or is everyone actually that tech savvy these days and has e.v.e.r.y.thing on the cloud?! If you’re like me, you’ll probably need some storage. Filing cabinets, cupboards, drawers and shelves are great…. and if you can invest in a complete built in option, you will not regret it! It’s so good to be able to store (hide) those mountains of ‘stuff’ behind closed doors.

Plenty of storage in our office is vital to keeping the space looking and feeling fresh and organised. 


5.  Organise it

What’s that old saying… a place for everything and everything in its place? To make this a bit more realistic, it helps to have those little things that make organisation a bit easier. Think trays, pin boards, calendar, and a pretty cup/pot/vase to store your pens in.


Al + Em has a pinboard to suit your every need!  Lots of colours and shapes to choose from, or Emma can do a custom order perfect for your space!  For a pretty calendar to organise yourself and prints to make your space look fab, check out The Middle Village.

Pinboard image via Al + Em

Calendar + prints via The Middle Village


The Grocery Basket from The Storekeeper & Co provides a stylish alternative to a plastic inbox.

Image via The Storekeeper & Co

6.  Add some greenery

I’m a bit of a sucker for indoor plants, and I totally think you should add one (or two…or more!) to your office too. Plants bring life to a space and break up all those straight lines that are inevitable in an office space.  Consider the light requirements of your chosen plant before you bring your new baby home.  Some of my top picks for indoor plants are the ZZ plant, Snake plant, Chain of Hearts and Fiddle Leaf Fig.


Feeling unsure about indoor plants?  Check out Captain Monstera – the girls can help you choose the perfect plant, pot it up for you and deliver it to your door (NSW only).  The ZZ plant  from Captain Monstera is almost indestructible!  

Image via Captain Monstera

My chain of hearts is loving life in my office…  nearly 2 metres long!  Its friend is a fakie from Ikea.

7.  Make it yours

I’m all about creating ‘authentic’ spaces… your home should be all about you and what you love. No one wants to live in a showroom, so make sure you add a few special pieces to personalise the space. Family photos, your favourite art works, a treasured family heirloom or some favourite books will add some ‘you’ to the space.


Photos that hold a special meaning are great to decorate with.  An old black and white photo of a Champion Cow from my husband’s family’s Angus cattle stud (that’s a mouth full!) takes pride of place on our office shelves.  

I am crushing hard of all of Rachel Prince’s work at the moment!  This is her “Cliff’s Edge” available for sale now on her website – if I don’t beat you to it!

Image via Rachel Prince Art

So there you have it… 7 tips for creating the perfect home office space.

If you’re ready to give your home office a makeover, but feel overwhelmed by all those big decisions, you’re not alone! I offer a range of services to solve the decorating dilemmas that are keeping you up at night.  Let’s create a home office space in your home that makes you actually enjoy spending time doing the book work!

Check out my range of services here or if you’d like to chat about how I can help you create your dream home, book a free 15 minute ‘get to know you’ call here.


Till next time,

J x

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