Tips To Set Up A Temporary Office

Recently I took a break from blogging to focus more time on family, moving, and getting my own home unpacked and organized after a recent renovation. I have received so many questions lately from those of you who are working from home and need help getting organized and setting up a temporary office. I thought now is the perfect time to get back to writing! Many of us thought we would be back in the workplace by July but that does not seem to be happening anytime soon. Working from home can be stressful especially when you do not have a specific area set up and no organization system in place. Today I want to share tips and suggestions on how to set up an inexpensive temporary office. The best way to be productive is to be organized!


Remember this is temporary so it doesn’t have to be perfect. Your goal is to create a space that is simple and organized and will help you be more productive when working at home. In a perfect world, it would be nice to set up your office where there is some privacy with little disruptions but with kids at home that may not be an option. Do your best to find an area in your home that works for you even if it is the kitchen table. During our renovation, I set up a temporary office space not just for myself but also for my daughters who came home for a couple of months at the beginning of COVID. I used a simple folding card table as a desk and it worked great as a temporary fix. Use items that you already own and it will save you save time and money.


This step is so important because if you are using an area in your home that is normally not an office you need to keep it simple. Sort supplies before you begin and only have the absolute essentials. Temporary offices have to be pared down or they can get cluttered and unorganized very quickly. Keep it simple!


If you want to stay organized investing in the proper containers is key. Keep your office supplies organized with a desk drawer insert. Even if you don’t have a desk drawer store it on a shelf and bring it out when you need it. Store office items you use less frequently in labeled boxes and keep them in a bookcase or shelf. These are a favorite because they are functional but look great too!


I like a portable desktop file box that can be out when you are using it but tucked away in a closet or on a shelf when not in use. I also recommend a collator to keep important files at your fingertips for easy access.


This is definitely essential for the simple fact that it cuts down on paper clutter. Shred old papers you no longer need and open mail near the shredder so you can shred junk mail and keep it from piling up. Every home, in my opinion, should own a shredder it helps to control the endless piles of paper clutter.


Labeling is another important way to stay organized in an office. Label all folders, files, and containers so you know what is in them. Labeling saves time and alleviates unnecessary searching for that one thing you know you have but you can’t find it!

I’m so happy to be back to answer your questions. If you have a question message or email me and don’t forget to follow me on Instagram @neatlydesigned for all of my latest tips on organizing and creating beautiful spaces.



These 2 Tips Keep You Organized and Save Money


How often do you say “I was looking for that?” Do you buy something you already own because you couldn’t find it, only to find it later when you were looking for something else? If you answered yes to these questions you are not alone. Implementing these two tips in your daily routine will get you organized, keep you organized and save you money!



1. Purge on a regular basis

I always tell clients in order to do a thorough job when organizing any area in your home you have to remove everything out of the space and purge. If you don’t let go of some items you will not be happy with the end result and it will keep you from gaining new space for the items that you need, use, and love. Start by letting go of multiples of the same item. How many spatulas, nail clippers, ice cream scoops do you really need? Purge items that are broken expired, you don’t use or have room to store.



2. Keep like items together

Now that you have purged corral like items and organize the space. For example in a pantry keep baking items together, snacks, breakfast foods, paper products, and canned goods. Store light bulbs, batteries, first aid in their own containers so you will be able to find what you need when you need it. Implement this one tip and you will be amazed how much you own of the same item.

Most people try to overlook clutter but when it multiples they begin to feel stressed and overwhelmed. The key to getting organized is to remember, “it’s never about having enough space, it’s about simplifying your surroundings. Purging and keeping like things together will save you time, money, frustration, and simplify your space.



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The Organizers Quarantine Essentials

Hi everyone I hope you are all staying healthy. Today I want to share some items that I have been using and loving while in quarantine. This has been a new normal in many ways for me and one big change has been our daughters moving back in with us during this time of uncertainty. As a parent, this has been such a big relief to have them under our roof safe and protected. On the other hand, our nest has been empty for quite a few years so it has been an adjustment for all of us but we are getting used to it. We also started a major home renovation at the beginning of February and have not been living in our home so when they say life can throw you curve balls they definitely are not kidding.

Like, everyone, we have been enjoying a lot of family time and I have to be honest although it’s a parents job to raise your children to be on their own with their own lives I think every Mom secretly wishes they could go back in time and appreciate the younger years because time goes so fast and you don’t realize it until your older. In my wildest dreams, I would have never imagined there would be a time when my children would move back in with us and spend every meal, every evening and every day for over a month without leaving the house. Impossible right? I know it won’t last so I have been savoring the meals, the laughter, the games, the music, and the talks. It has been so surreal and if anything good has come from this crisis it is the ability to get something back that you thought was impossible. I am sure there are a lot of you parents of adult children who can relate to this new unexpected normal.

Now that there are four of us working from home these have been a few items that have made it easier for me to stay organized and in a routine which I think is so important during times of stress and uncertainty.

AirPod Case This case has been a lifesaver with all of us using headphones in the same house. I know which case is mine and I can easily find them when I need them. They are inexpensive and come in many colors.

Elfa File Cart I have mentioned this file cart previously but I cannot tell you how essential this has been to keep my files and office supplies organized while living in a temporary space. It has wheels so I can it take from room to room and when I’m not using it I can store it in a closet. Perfect for small spaces.

iPad Pro Smart Keyboard I originally bought this smart keyboard for when I travel but lately I have been using my iPad as a second computer. It’s lightweight and has an attached cover to protect the screen so I can carry it with me.

Calm Cards for Serenity I originally brought these to our rental because I thought I would need some calm inspiration to get me through the renovation. Now with everything going on it has become a daily routine to pick a card and discuss it. We could all use some calm and serenity right about now.

I love to cook but as an empty nester, we have been used to either an easy meal at home, take out or eating out. Now that we are quarantined together as a family I have been cooking more in the past few weeks than I have in years! I have to say I have really enjoyed family mealtime again and having more than two people to cook for. These are a few favorites I’m loving in the kitchen!

Green Pans I absolutely love these pans! They are non-stick which means easy to clean, scratch-resistant and 100% non-toxic. I bought one pan and now I own a whole set!

iDesign Containers As an organizer you knew I would have to talk about a favorite to get you organized. These containers have kept the pantry in our rental organized which has been so important now that I’m grocery shopping for four. I use these all the time with clients but they are are a must-have in my own home. They come in different sizes to fit any pantry or bath space and they are on sale!

ECOS Fruit and Veggie Wash I have always washed my fruits and vegetables but recently I started using this and it takes washing to another level. Easy to use, no fragrance and rinses off with no residue or taste left behind.

White Colander Speaking of washing this is the perfect size colander to clean fruits and vegetables. Another plus looks great sitting on the counter waiting to be used multiple times a day. It’s dishwasher, microwave, and oven safe too!

Like many of you, I have been enjoying a very low key skincare, makeup, and wardrobe in the past few weeks. These have been a few favorites some new and some oldie but goodies.

Pimple Patch I keep these on hand anyway but when you have a house full of women these have come in very handy and they work!

T3 Hot Rollers If you are new to my blog you can go here and watch my YouTube video on how I style my hair and why I love these rollers so much. These have been a lifesaver now that salons are closed. I wash my hair use leave-in conditioner and put my hair in a bun overnight. In the morning I put the hot rollers in for 15 minutes and when I take them out I flip my head over, run my fingers through it, flip it back and I have full soft curls.

Kerastase Hair Mask When you have hair as thick and coarse as mine you experiment with ways to tame the frizz. I have actually been using this mask as a leave-in and love it! It has been hot and humid and this helps way my hair down and adds moisture. I just use it on the ends so my hair does not get greasy.

Nail Hardener I removed my dip nails when I saw the direction this health crisis was taking and I always go back to this product to get my natural nails strong and healthy. It really works in just a few days if you follow the directions. My daughter has been using it too and said Mom this really works!

Tom Ford Foundation Stick Like many of you I have not been wearing any makeup which has been a nice break and my skin has been so happy. If I have a video conference meeting or I’m making videos this is my new favorite foundation. It is a stick which makes applying it so easy and it covers so well I can use it as a concealer too! I apply it with a brush and the finish is amazing and the color is perfect.

Athleta Pants I love Athleta for work, travel and to lounge around the house. These have been a new favorite because of the wide leg and comfy waistband. You can dress them up a bit or just wear flip flops and a t-shirt.

Portable Speaker This was a gift from a friend and I brought it to our rental and little did I know this would provide hours of family entertainment. We have enjoyed playing music at mealtime and a competitive after-dinner game of name that tune. It is Bluetooth, easy to use and the sound is incredible!

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