What do you need around you to be productive?  What elements come to mind when you think of a space that’s inviting?  Several months ago when my co-worker popped into my office for a meeting, she told me she loves to gather in my office because the space is so welcoming, calm, and inspiring. Now that we working from home during the COVID-19 crisis to stay well, it’s important to curate a space that inspires and welcomes you each day. Here’s are my six must-haves for the perfect workspace.

First, a good candle. I have a few officemates with sensitive noses, so be sure when you are selecting a fragrance to remember the fragrance will travel out of your door. Steer clear of anything too floral. I like citrus and vanilla. Trader Joe’s has terrific smelling, affordable candles. I am not sure if they still have them in stock, but their lemon cookie scented candle was a hit in the office.  Lavender and mint is also a pleasant and calming fragrance that works well in an open environment.

A pretty lamp. I like the lighting of a lamp and it’s the first thing I turn on as I settled into my office for the day ahead. Even during the bright light of day, I always have a lamp on. It just says “welcome” to me.  Since I work at a University, my lamp is a pretty shade of lavender to nod toward our school colors. This can be your chance to showcase your personality.

Flowers. At the start of most weeks, I try to bring a bunch of fresh flowers from Trader Joe’s so I can enjoy them throughout the week. If you’d rather save the money, faux orchids can be just as pretty and inviting.  Normally, this is the time of year Trader Joe’s starts seeing their peonies come into the store. Peonies are such a pretty and romantic.

A mirrored tray. This is the tray I have on the corner of my desk. I house my vase of flowers, a lit candle, and two more things I am going to share next. I got my tray from Home Goods, but you can find them anyone – like Target here or World Market here. A mirrored tray casts a pretty reflection in an office with ultraviolet light.

A candy jar. Every office must have a dish or jar of candy. In my case, sometimes I have a mini cake plate with a dome (like above). My co-worker Tracy gifted me with a giant box of homemade snowball cookies and I had to share them. Don’t they look pretty stacked under the dome? Always offer someone a treat after you meet with them. They will never forget you! If I am not offering cookies, I usually have cherry sours or Swedish fish – my two favorite “desk” candies.

And last, every desk needs pretty pencils and pens. I have several pen sets from Taylor Elliott Designs. They are fun when you have to attend a meeting (that could have been an email), and I love gifting them – especially when someone is starting a new job.  Taylor always throws in a treat inside every shipment, too.

“When you leave a beautiful place, you carry it with you wherever you go.” Alexandra Stoddard

Have a beautiful week.