Small Home Office Ideas: Tour our Shared Office

Enjoy our shared home office tour and come away with some great small home office ideas for your own work space.

My dear friends, it’s high time I share my home office tour with you!  This tour has been a long time coming.  Mr. Tidbits and I finished this space a while ago, but it’s been going through a series of tweaks while we sorted out how to best utilize this new home office space. 


You see, this office is an addition to our home.  I give full details about how this small home office came to be in my YouTube video on this space, but let’s just say that once we built our home, we found that we needed more space for

A: a mudroom/drop zone and

B: a distraction free workspace for myself and Mr. Tidbits. 

So, we set out to design a home office and mudroom addition off of our existing living room.


I shared our mudroom reveal with you recently.  Today, the shared home office is finally getting its day in the sun.  I’d love to walk you through the major design elements of this room and share some of my favorite small home office ideas.

Small Office, Big Windows

Structure first, right?  At least that’s what Mr. Tidbits says, so that’s where we started with this room.  We drafted a floor plan for this office that was designed to give it plenty of natural light.  We opted for large windows on two of our exterior walls. 


Our window shades filter the bright sunlight behind the computer screen and I prefer them over traditional blinds. The abundant natural light is a one of my favorite elements in this room. We rarely need overhead lighting in here. When the light is low outside, we switch on our desk lamp.

Faux Beams

We decided to install some faux beams in our new home office.  The beams give this space a touch of old-world character.  We stained the beams to match the beautiful walnut cabinets in this office.


Paint With Texture and Dimension

The paint in this room is another one of my favorite elements.  Do you remember when we painted the rest of our house? I did a review of the Pure and Original paint that we used. I adored the textured look it gave us and wanted to do something similar in this space. 


Mr. Tidbits used a special technique using baking soda and water to give our wall paint a faux concrete/plaster look.  Checkout our YouYube video for more details.  It’s hard to photograph, but I love the warm, antique look of these walls.

Black and White Marble Office Flooring

Flooring was an important element in this shared office room.  I’ve been dreaming of having a black and white marble floor for so long.  Over the years I’ve collected quite a few checkerboard flooring ideas. We finally made my flooring dreams come true when we chose this gorgeous black and white marble set in a harlequin or diagonal checkerboard arrangement.  No rugs here! I want to see this beautiful floor.


I love checkerboard flooring so much that I did an entire blog series about it! If you’d like to learn more about how to design a checkerboard floor and how to chose the correct size tile for a checkerboard floor, you check out my past blog posts for all the details.

Open Shelving for Small Home Office

To keep this narrow home office layout from feeling closed in, we built open shelving along of one of our office walls.  We utilized our vertical space by building these shelves all the way up to the ceiling.


I wanted this small space to feel airy and light and I think that the open shelving certainly helps achieve that.  It gives us a place for both decor and storage. 


The arches along the top row are one of my favorite parts of this room.  The little alcoves they create are totally charming. We put a piece of our favorite pottery in each alcove. I love the bit of romance that they add.

DIY Office Cabinets

Our home office cabinets were custom built for this space by Mr. Tidbits.  Of course, we chose to build them out of our current favorite, walnut wood.  The natural color is a soothing compliment to the marble floor and stone countertops. 


There is no closet in this room, so these cabinets provide some essential storage space. We keep these cabinets stocked with things like office supplies, sewing materials, and our printer. Having some cabinets or cupboards with doors really helps cut down on clutter and keeps the rest of the room looking tidy.  

DIY Home Office Countertops

Next up we have countertops.  We honed these countertops out of remnants we picked up from a local supplier.  You can find out how we hone and install countertops by reading our tutorial.  It’s definitely worth the work to be able to have stone counters for a fraction for the price!  


If you look closely, you’ll notice that we used two different types of stone in this room.  The wall with the open shelving has a quartz countertop, and the wall with our desks has a marble countertop.  I love how well the they play together, but I also like the subtle difference that helps set these two areas apart.  I think it’s a charming touch. 


DIY File Cabinet Desk

The shared desk was made by placing our honed marble countertop across two wooden file folder cabinets


You can be sure that we make good use of the file folder cabinet drawers to store our project information and important documents.  Creating our own large, custom desk for this space was a huge money saver!

Small Home Office Ideas and Tips

Now that I’ve shared the major main design elements of this room, I want to share some of my best tips for creating a small home office that you will love.


Choose the Right Office Chairs

My first tip is to choose a desk chair that you will love.  Office furniture can be tricky to shop for. I don’t always love the way desk chairs look, but they’re an important part of a functional workspace. Mr. Tidbits and I spend a lot of time working in this room and therefore, a lot of time sitting in these office chairs


I tried several office chairs before settling of these beauties.  I wanted chairs that could deliver both comfort and style for this room.  I’ve been happy with how these chairs have performed in both areas.  These linen covered chairs add softness and warmth to our desk space.

Use Functional and Beautiful Storage Solutions

My next tip is to make the very most of your small home office space.  If you, like me, want your office to be both beautiful and functional, I recommend taking advantage of any opportunity to blend storage and style.  Look for decorative elements that can serve a functional purpose. 


In this small office, we’ve had to get creative.  We used a decorative basket for our office waste basket.  We’ve also got baskets of yarn and fabric.  I have some lovely linen boxes that hold paint samples and art supplies.  Get creative and see how you can create storage solutions with the decorative items in your home! 

We’ve also repurposed some thrift and antique store finds into organization tools for our desk area. My favorite cubby sorter holds stationary, my secret chocolate stash (don’t tell!) and other office accessories. 


Mr. Tidbit’s antique table-top bookshelf holds boxes to sort his office supplies and documents.  The antique letter holders above our desk are the perfect place for us to sort our important mail.  I love having storage solutions that look like decor. 

Add Personality to Your Home Office

I believe that your home office should be a space that you truly enjoy.  I wanted this shared office to reflect the personalities of both myself and my husband.  To do this, I tried to add elements that represented both of us.  My side of the desk holds that chippy blue antique organizer I mentioned above.  I’ve also got a darling country-themed calendar that just speaks to my homestead loving soul. 


My husband’s side of the desk has more dark colors and wood tones. His workstation holds his tabletop antique bookshelf.  Mr. Tidbits has also displayed a few nick knacks with special significance that he’s collected over the years.  


I love seeing both of us represented in this space.  I also know that my work days are more enjoyable when I love my surroundings.  I’d encourage you to look for ways to personalize your space to bring you joy.     

Bring Inspirational Pieces into Your Home Office

Lastly, remember to bring items into your home office that inspire you.  Personally, I love art.  I have some framed pieces of meaningful artwork that I placed in this space to inspire me.  I keep a bolt of linen fabric in here because I’m always working on new ideas for my Tidbits Linen product line.  Whenever possible, I also love bringing fresh flowers into this space for a bit of inspiration.


Over on Mr. Tidbit’s side, we hung his engineering degree certificate on the wall.  He loves the outdoors so we added a plant to bring a touch of nature to his space.  And of course, Mr. Tidbits and I both have a Tidbits Planner on our desk.  I find that putting my ideas on paper always gives me lots of inspiration.  


More Home Inspiration

At the end of the day, I’m really happy with this little office nook of mine. Having a home office area that is separate from our living area is a luxury I appreciate. It’s so nice to have a setup that allows us a quiet space to work and study.


This project provided us with lots of opportunity to crank out ideas for maximizing a small home office. I hope you’ve enjoyed seeing it. What are your home office must-haves? Do you have a study area for your kids to do homework? A spare room converted to a work-from-home setup? I’d love to hear about it!

If you want to see my other room reveals, click on the links below and have a look around. Thanks for being here!

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