Your First Apartment: Office

Whether you are starting college for the first time, transitioning to a Masters or Ph.D program, or starting a new job, office space is important. A separate, organized place to study and work will make you more productive. A lot of apartments are small, and would not accommodate a full-room office. However, get the furniture and organizational items you need, and you’ll be all set.


Pratt Desk (in a walnut & white finish) from West Elm

(This option is sleek and durable. The slender design takes up less visual space than something big and chunky.)

A similar, yet less expensive option would be…

The VIKA AMON/VIKA LERBERG combination from IKEA



You want to invest in a chair that is comfortable for you to sit in for hours on end. While studying in bed may sound cozy, you will fall asleep.

May I suggest…

The Markus swivel Chair from IKEA


Coordinating Storage

“A place for everything and everything in its place” really is good advice. You will lose papers and books less often, and consequently lose your mind less often if this is your rule. There are tons of storage options, so chose what works best for you. Here are some thoughts.


Desktop Storage

Dokument Letter Tray from IKEA

(For next weeks homework assignment and bills due by the end of the month.)

Dokument Pencil Cups from IKEA

Dokument Magazine Files from IKEA


Books and Things

While big shelving units may be enticing, remember that college and many other new living situations may be temporary. Also, cheap, particleboard shelving from Wal-Mart or Target is just that….cheap. (AKA lots of books may break it.) So weigh your needs with your budget. Here are some durable and affordable options.

Lerberg Shelf Unit from IKEA (made of metal)

Coop Tower from CB2

The Expedit Bookcase from IKEA

(Yes this is made of particleboard, but I have found that it is more durable than similar products from the competition. It is great also because it can be placed as shown or on it’s side. It’s a great flexible option and holds a ton of stuff.)



Good lighting is absolutely essential. Period. This is especially an issue in poorly-lit apartments. Even if the overhead fixture is old and dated, add good layers of decorative and workspace lighting, and you won’t even have to worry about it.

Crane Grellow Desk Lamp from CB2

(This lamp uses LED bulbs. This means the lamp won’t get hot causing you to heat up after hours of studying. Also, the bulb is only 1 watt — it will hardly affect your electricity bill.)

VÄTE Table lamp from IKEA

(A fun lamp like this on a side table will add a nice warm glow to your space in addition to workspace lighting.)

LACK Clamp Bookcase Lighting from IKEA

(Lighting shelving units adds all the difference in both appearance and function.)


Living Things

Please don’t forget to put something living in your study space. A room always feels better when the outdoors are brought in, and what a great way to clean the air and liven your spirits.

Plants don’t need to be expensive. Simply read care instructions and determine what plant(s) would be best in your environment.


*REMEMBER: Make your office or study space creative and fun. You don’t want to study in a dark cave, and you want to be able to find things efficiently. I promise the more time and money  you invest (within your budget) the better you will be able to work in your space.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: