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New surrounds

They say a change is as good as a rest, and while I wouldn’t go quite so far as to say my new home office brings me as much joy as, say, a two week Caribbean vacation might have, I’m going to say it’s pretty close. Ok, maybe not pretty close, but close enough..!

I shared many of these photos of my new office over on Instagram recently, as paid of a brand collaboration with home organisation extraordinaires Tylko (who I previously worked with in the Fab Flat too) but, lover as I am for creating content for my own space (i.e. here) rather than just for the Meta-verse, I felt compelled to share more imagery and background info on the partnership here as well. 

Tylko approached me about a potential collaboration at an incredibly fortuitous time. We’ve been in our ‘new home’ for over 18 months now (at what point do I just call it ‘home’?), and since moving in my home office has been in the small box room on the middle floor, while the second largest bedroom on the top floor was designated for guests – and had become a dumping ground since we haven’t actually had any since we moved (I blame the pandemic.. we have friends..!)

Luis and I had briefly discussed moving things around (in that kinda throwaway, non-committal way) when Tylko got in touch. Moving my office to the top floor and the guest bedroom to the middle-floor box room had been an intriguing prospect for me, but the thing holding me back at that point had been how I might configure my furniture in the space – since I’d essentially be doubling my office floor space – and I wasn’t that sold on how well my existing pieces would function. The prospect of being able to design my own bespoke pieces of furniture for the space however (to include all the bizarre things I’d need to store in the room, such as Christmas decorations and an excess of camera equipments and photography props) was an absolute dream! 

Designing a bespoke bookcase and sideboard for my new home office essentially meant that I’d be starting from a complete blank canvas, since the bedroom has plain white painted walls and a mottled brown carpet (you know, standard rental decor). The only existing pieces from my office set-up that would move upstairs would be my oak desk (the Celine from Case Furniture, previously my dressing table in the Fab Flat) and office chair from Humanscale in soft tan and grey, which combined to give me a soft, earthy colour palette as a base. 

I’d initially thought I’d opt for the timelessness of the Type01 Plywood or Veneer collection, but as I started to properly explore the Tylko website I found myself falling hard for the modern elegance of the Type02 collection, particularly in the Sand + Midnight Blue colour way. It too felt timeless – but in a more bold and striking way – and married the warm creamy tones I was already working with with one of my favourite colours: a deep, rich, navy blue.

From the moment I visualised this colourway in the space I knew in my heart it would look stunning but I certainly took my time to commit – going back and forth over a couple of weeks trying to decide if I wanted to commit to such a ‘bold statement’ or play it safe with a more neutral ash veneer. It seems a silly thing to agonise over but I find with big ticket items I’m often incredibly torn between wanting something dynamic but being incredibly mindful about how it might age. Interior trends these days feel relentless; we’re all so bombarded with imagery and inspiration from every corner of the internet which I find can make it tough to trust my own design intuition (ironic to say, I know, when writing a design-based blog, but I’m only human). In the end though, my heart won out and as soon as the pieces arrived and we began constructing them in the room, I knew I had made the right decision. 

Having previously assembled two Type01 plywood bookcases (on my own!) in my old flat, then de-assembled them to move to Warrington (first to the old flat, and then again when we moved to this house), I knew that despite how big these new pieces were, they would be fairly simple to put together in my office. 

If you’ve not come across Tylko before, they’re a bit of a disrupter brand in the flat pack furniture space since all their pieces can be customised to fit your interior space and suit your lifestyle needs. When you land on their website you choose a basic design style as a starting point and then use their online tools to adjust the height, depth and width of the piece, add drawers or doors to created cupboards, and opt for back panels (or not). As you’re designing you can change the style (slant, gradient, pattern, grid) to shift the internal configuration of the unit, as well as preview the other colour options for the style as well. 

Once you’ve settled on your design and place your order, your design is put into production and delivered in 3-4 weeks, in flat pack. This means that you need to unpack the boxes (of which there will be multiple) and assemble each piece of the design – in order – to construct the piece. This sounds complicated, and can certainly feel it when your hallway is stacked high with numbered boxes, but that’s not that case. You simply need to open the boxes in order – Box 1 will contain the instruction booklet with your bespoke assembly instructions – and then follow them through, utilising Tylko’s simple ‘click-in’ system that doesn’t involve a single screw. Each panel is also clearly labelled with an easy-to-remove-once-constructed sticker (although we’ve left on the ones that are not immediately visible, to aid with any future dis/assembly). 

Because I designed both the bookcase and cabinet with their specific purpose in mind, each drawer and shelf was perfectly proportioned for its intended contents which made organising and styling the units a complete breeze! I now have a dedicated space for space tech items, cables and camera equipment, three drawers full of Christmas decorations (which previously lived in plastic boxes stacked up in our disused shower cubicle, which – happy aside – is now fully functional for the first time since we moved in!)

I really love the look and feel of both units, and how sleek and stylish they are, which helps to elevate the overall ambience of my office and help me feel more put together whilst working there too – plus I no longer have to spend time moving boxes out of sightlines before joining Zoom calls for work! It really is true that when your office space is neat and tidy you feel more focused and more calm in your day-to-day work, and creating this new home office has been a real testament of that for me. 

There are definitely a few other things I’d like to do in the room – in an ideal world I’d love to paint one of the walls a nice bold hue (not likely in our rental, sadly) and also invest in a large – pet-friendly, washable – rug to bring in some added interest to the floor. Neither are neccessary, just potential next steps in the evolution of the room, although some additional artwork on the wall above the chair is something I’m likely to tackle next though, potentially moving some of the smaller frames that were in my old office – now guest room – up into the space. I also need to finish styling and photograph that room to share here – soon, soon! You’ll be amused to hear we’ve – finally! – had a guest (my sister) come to stay in it, so switching things around has certainly worked out for the best. 

If you’re feeling inspired, Tylko have very kindly given me a discount code enabling you to get 30% off all orders using the code fabricofmylife30 (valid till 31/08/2022).

Please do let me know if you end up designing your own Tylko piece for your home – I’d love to see what you create!

Get the Look

1. Ribbed concrete table lamp*, HouseOf 2. 3 Palm Trees Perspective Print*, Ink & Drop 3. Kosa storage jar, Tipoii at Glassette 4. Vitra toolbox, Utility Design 5. Aroma Diffuser Lamp, Cedar 6. Restore box, Muuto at Skandium 7. 675 chair*, by Robin Day at Case Furniture 8. Hand-painted small plate, Lrnce 9. Mini Tidy Tray, Aspinal of London


This post contains PR products which have been gifted as part of previous brand collaborations. All gifted products are denoted with an asterisk* for transparency. As ever, all thoughts and opinions are my own. All photography © Kate Baxter / Fabric of my Life. 

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