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Working from home has plenty of pros, but when your small office (or dining room table desk combo) is cramped, cluttered, or dark, it can make every day feel like a Monday. Susie Levache (Bananashed Home) had a work room that had been collecting dust before—but now that she was working from home on the regular, she no longer wanted to settle for a subpar space. “My office was the smallest room in the house and had become a dumping ground—a cemetery for old clothes and useless furniture that was redundant from other rooms!” Susie says. Plus, the dark, dim environment made it tough to decorate. “It was such a dreary north-facing room that I struggled to decide on wall colors to begin with,” she says.

While Susie had always wanted to change it, she finally hit a breaking point—literally. “My desk was broken and I went to take out some equipment from the drawers one day and they came off it my hand,” says Susie. “I’d spent so long making sure everyone else’s rooms were efficient and worked hard for the rest of the family neglecting my own needs! The drawers in my hand was the day I decided to take positive action.”

To give the office more personality and spunk, Susie turned to color. “I knew a warm color was needed,” she says. “I didn’t want to commit to a really bright shade as I wasn’t sure such a small space would work in a bright hue, so instead I chose a warm neutral beige pink on the panelling and focused instead on a graphic wall and using brighter colors on furniture and the artwork.” The beige-tinged pink she chose (Frenchic Furniture’s Nougat) feels delicate and soft, but not at all babyish. Bright teal (Frenchic Furniture’s Serendipity) gives the desk some pop.

For her graphic accent wall, Susie used BORÅSTAPETER’s Tallyho 2751 wallpaper. A simple pattern combined with a high-contrast color scheme make it look extra stylish. Since Susie couldn’t replace the flooring in the space, she simply repurposed a rug she already had that needed a new home. Finally, Susie covered the walls in unique pieces of art and added a vibrant coral office chair—the perfect dose of punch.

Susie used the project as a chance to bond with her daughter and teach her a few reno tricks. “I demonstrated how to use the spirit level and hand saw and after 20 minutes she did all of the panelling! It was extraordinary,” Susie says. All in all, the makeover took three days and cost about $140 for everything. 

“I love the mix of colors and textures and despite my fears that the graphic paper may overwhelm such a small space, it actually really grounds the room and gives it an airy feeling,” says Susie—which just goes to prove that even small spaces can handle a little maximalism.

Inspired? Submit your own project here.





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