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Anatomy Of An Office #1: The Vision and Goals

Nubby Twiglet | Anatomy Of An Office #1: The Vision and Goals

Welcome to my brand new column, Anatomy Of An Office! This series is dedicated to pulling together a functional yet stylish workspace and over the next few weeks, I have some fun stuff planned including resources to find great (yet affordable) artwork as well as a simple shelving DIY.

Nubby Twiglet | Anatomy Of An Office #1: The Vision and Goals

Things got real last Thursday when I signed the lease on Branch’s new space and was handed the key. With a little over a week until our move-in date, I felt the pressure to pull together the look of the space fast. Because this is a design studio, the space has to be highly functional — but at the same time, with friends and clients stopping by, it has to feel pulled together. Accomplishing both is a delicate balance!

When thinking about the space, I had a few thoughts / goals:

1. Avoid useless clutter. Everything needs a purpose. Candles, plants and artwork? Awesome. Random items taking up valuable surface space just because they look great? Not so much.

2. Invest in key statement pieces. While I’m definitely working on a budget and have some extra furniture that will work well in the space, I don’t want to run out and buy cheap, disposable items to fill any gaps. The thought of taking shortcuts only to have to throw away a lot of stuff in a few years doesn’t feel good. I’m using a desk, computer and chairs I already own but decided to splurge on a nice credenza to hold books and supplies.

3. Matching office supplies are worth it. While not a necessity, having nice sets of items you use every day (pens, stationery, coffee mugs, dishes, etc.) feels very grown-up and orderly. I love it. Because of this, I ordered some orange goodies from Poppin. I already use their yellow set-up in my home office and their stuff is fantastic.

4. Infuse your personal style within the style of your business. The aesthetic of Branch is very midcentury modern with clean lines and pops of citrus hues while my personal style (splashed across Nubby Twiglet) is more black and white with an avant garde flair. It’s important to mix in a dash of my personal style (Branch is my business, after all) so it feels welcoming — there’s nothing worse than opening the doors to a space you own and going, “Who is this? Who am I?!!”

5. Accept the imperfections. The brick walls in my new space are really rough. The rafters are unpainted. And, the room isn’t a perfect square. And you know what? I LOVE IT. I love it because it doesn’t feel like a replica of my home office, it feels like a completely new space. The thought of leaving my home office every morning to go into an exact replica of it at work just feels pointless. The imperfections of my new space? They’re what make it unique.

Thanks for coming along on this exciting new journey with me!

Item resources: Alba credenza, For Like Ever print, succulents, Nelson eye clock, Bertoia side chair, Poppin scissors, marble board, Parsons desk, wire basket, rolling table, Union rug, Chad Wys print, Poppin pens and lacquer tray.

On the hunt for even more office tips and tricks? Check out Anatomy Of An Office!

Kicking Off The New Year In Style: My Office Tour…and a Giveaway!

Nubby Twiglet | Branch Office Tour and Giveaway

I spent a solid 10 years of my life sitting in other people’s offices…never feeling like the surroundings really reflected who I was.

And, that was totally fair — after all, I was getting paid to show up and do a job! The thing is, I’d always dreamed of having my own space. In the ideal scenario, I wanted somewhere that fit my personal taste and made me excited to get out of bed every day (even on Mondays and the occasional weekend).

At the same time, my practical side kicked in — I didn’t want to go into massive debt just for the sake of having a pretty space. No matter who you are, that’s just a terrible business move! So, I waited it out, working from an extra room at home…until the perfect spot landed in my lap during the Fall. I moved in November 1st and quickly got to work making the surroundings feel relaxed but stylized and documented the process in Anatomy Of An Office.

Nubby Twiglet | Branch Office Tour and Giveaway

Thanks for virtually joining me as the space came together over these last few months. Now, it’s time to kick off the new year in style and help YOU pull your own space together. Scroll down to the bottom of this post to enter an awesome $200.00 giveaway courtesy of UncommonGoods! They have a ton of great home and office items so you can put the perfect finishing touches on your space!

The Tour

Nubby Twiglet | Branch Office Tour and Giveaway

Let’s start with a good ol’ before and after. As these things usually go, I didn’t get many great before shots. I came in, took a quick tour, came back a week later when the construction was finished, signed the lease and moved in. Both of these shots were taken from the entrance, just at slightly different angles. The main differences between the shots: the old popcorn-textured ceiling was removed, plywood sheets were installed for the flooring, window casings were built in and the brick wall to the left was painted white.

Nubby Twiglet | Branch Office Tour and Giveaway

It’s time to move onto the desk area. I already had a spare desk and an Aeron chair from my old office so I kept those around. My desk area has a massive set of windows directly behind it which is great for a dose of natural light.

Nubby Twiglet | Branch Office Tour and Giveaway

I’m all about having a tidy surface and clean off my desk every night before I leave. It’s almost like I’m giving myself a clean slate for the morning. Each morning, I walk in, plug in my space heater (old brick buildings are COLD!), set down my cup of coffee and light a candle. It’s nice to have those little rituals to start your day.

Nubby Twiglet | Branch Office Tour and Giveaway

I also have an affirmation from Kikki K taped to my computer. It’s a good reminder that even when the unexpected things hit (because they always do!), a positive attitude will go a long way.

Nubby Twiglet | Branch Office Tour and Giveaway

I’m really big on matching office supplies. As soon as I signed the lease on my new space, I ordered orange goodies from Poppin. Their stuff is super solid and comes in tons of punchy colors. And of course, an eccentric pencil holder is a must!

Nubby Twiglet | Branch Office Tour and Giveaway

Moving on, directly behind my desk is a bookshelf I’ve had for a decade. All of my design books and reference magazines and catalogs are housed in it by color.

Nubby Twiglet | Branch Office Tour and Giveaway

Nubby Twiglet | Branch Office Tour and Giveaway

On the white brick wall next to the bookshelf, I have a large inspiration board. This is my view when I glance over to the right side of my desk. If you missed the DIY, you can build your own by following these steps!

Nubby Twiglet | Branch Office Tour and Giveaway

Nubby Twiglet | Branch Office Tour and Giveaway

Nubby Twiglet | Branch Office Tour and Giveaway

Moving down from the inspiration board along the edge of the white wall, there’s two orange chairs divided by a round yellow table. My brother is the ultimate thrifter and found these chairs for $40.00 each at a swap meet somewhere in California. I’m really big on the necessities not being ugly — this garbage can holds a lot but isn’t an eyesore.

Nubby Twiglet | Branch Office Tour and Giveaway

Moving to the opposite side of the room, I have a row of built-in shelving that allows me to change out the artwork. It’s built out of door frame trim and you can make your own here! I usually have a mix of coffee table books, records and inspirational sayings rounding out the mix.

Nubby Twiglet | Branch Office Tour and Giveaway

Directly below the shelving is a white credenza — this is where all the basics are nicely hidden including dishes, props, a scanner, wacom tablet and extra supplies.

Nubby Twiglet | Branch Office Tour and Giveaway

Nubby Twiglet | Branch Office Tour and Giveaway

Nubby Twiglet | Branch Office Tour and Giveaway

Nubby Twiglet | Branch Office Tour and Giveaway

Nubby Twiglet | Branch Office Tour and Giveaway

Nubby Twiglet | Branch Office Tour and Giveaway

I picked up a bunch of yellow cardboard storage boxes from IKEA to hold things like art supplies, Pantone books and candles. It’s a simple way to keep the clutter contained.


Nubby Twiglet | Branch Office Tour and Giveaway

Everything in my office can be sourced from this handy list:

• Blanket: Cross by Pia Wallén.
• Brutalized Gainsborough print: Chad Wys on Society 6.
• Colored trays: Kaleido Trays by HAY.
• Credenza: Alba by CB2.
• Desk: Parsons by West Elm.
• Eiffel Tower sculpture: HomeGoods.
• Floor lamp: RANARP by IKEA.
• Footed bowl: UncommonGoods.
• For Like Ever Print: Bright Yellow by Super Rural.
• Fuzzy pillow: Anthropologie (made in different colors now).
• Garbage can: UncommonGoods.
• Gelato candle: Mozi Australia.
• Magazine files: TJENA by IKEA.
• Office chair: Aeron by Herman Miller.
• Pens and scissors: Poppin.
• Round table: Stockholm by IKEA.
• Rug: Moroccan Trellis by Nuloom.
• Sculpture With A Spectrum print: Chad Wys on Society 6.
• Storage boxes: TJENA by IKEA.
• Today I Am affirmation: Vision Board by Kikki K.
• Toucan pen holder: UncommonGoods.
• Tray and pencil cup: Marble by H&M (no longer made).
• Wire chairs: Ethel by The Bend.

Thanks for checking out my space….now it’s time for the really fun stuff below!

Nubby Twiglet | Branch Office Tour and Giveaway

UncommonGoods Giveaway


For this giveaway, I’ve partnered up with UncommonGoods, an independently founded B Corp based in Brooklyn with a focus on supporting artisans and giving back to the community. Pretty awesome, right?

They’re giving one lucky reader a $200.00 voucher and you can spend it on whatever you’d like…but here are some of my suggestions to get you started:

Nubby Twiglet | Branch Office Tour and Giveaway

Source: 1. Greek coffee cup, 2. cockatoo pencil holder, 3. unzipped glass bag, 4. footed bowl, 5. ampersand serving board, 6. apple trinket box, 7. tubular garbage can, 8. agate coasters, 9. footed mug, 10. porcupine pencil holder, 11. heart server and 12. whale stapler.

To Enter

It’s easy to enter the giveaway:

1. Like UncommonGoods on Facebook.

2. Like Nubby Twiglet on Facebook.

3. Leave a comment below letting me know what you’d spend your UncommonGoods winnings on!

Pssst! Need some ideas? They have THOUSANDS of items to peruse including handmade / personalized / gift options here, here and here.

The fine print: Contest is open to everyone over the age of 18 worldwide. You have until 11:59pm PST on Friday, January 9th, 2015 to enter. One winner will be chosen at random. Use a current email address when you leave your comment so I can contact you! Once contacted, you will have one week to respond and claim your prize. The prize may not be exchanged or transferred and no cash alternative will be offered. Liability cannot be accepted for entries which are lost in transit or not received due to technical difficulties. My decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into. No purchase necessary.

Good luck….and happy new year!

Special thanks to UncommonGoods for sponsoring this giveaway. All photos and opinions are my own.

5 Tips To Create a Personalized Workspace

Nubby Twiglet | 5 Tips To Create a Personalized Workspace

I moved into my current studio space a year and a half ago but it’s only been in the last month that I’ve felt really at home and content. Maybe that’s true of anywhere you live or work — it takes awhile to find a balance in your surroundings and a ton of trial and error.

Nubby Twiglet | 5 Tips To Create a Personalized Workspace

Nubby Twiglet | 5 Tips To Create a Personalized Workspace

It’s about moving furniture around into the right configuration, finding art that inspires you and picking out plants that liven up your space but also about settling in and having routines.

Nubby Twiglet | 5 Tips To Create a Personalized Workspace

It’s a process that’s partially about self exploration (what do you really like? What inspires you day after day?) and also, practicality. I made the mistake of doing a few impulse buys on “pretty” things during the first year that just didn’t work out — mainly uncomfortable furniture and items that weren’t well made.

Nubby Twiglet | 5 Tips To Create a Personalized Workspace

Early on when I was planning out my studio, I set up a Pinterest board to keep track of sources and ideas. I occasionally still pin photos there and it’s fun to look back and see the evolution of a space.

Nubby Twiglet | 5 Tips To Create a Personalized Workspace

There are 5 key elements that have made this space feel just right and I hope they give you some ideas for your own, as well. The great part is, most of these tips will work just as well in a spare corner of your room as they will in a larger space.

Nubby Twiglet | 5 Tips To Create a Personalized Workspace

1. Inspiration board

Nothing beats the feeling of pinning up great business cards, pages from magazines and thank you notes into one big, loose collage. I have a massive inspiration board next to my desk that Joey built for me on a small budget. If you want to create one in a similar style, here’s the DIY.

Nubby Twiglet | 5 Tips To Create a Personalized Workspace

2. Personal photos

A workspace isn’t complete without a few personal mementos. I have a handful of photobooth strips with friends tacked up but beyond that, I love ordering square print sets from Artifact Uprising because you can do it straight from your phone. Bring all those digital photos to life! Current favorite: that baby photo of Chubs! Awwww.

Nubby Twiglet | 5 Tips To Create a Personalized Workspace

3. Practical, multi-purpose furniture

When I moved into my space, my furniture was a mix of hand-me-downs and impulse buys. None of it was very practical, except my bookshelf. Over time, I’ve focused in more on function. The plant stand (below) is a new favorite from IKEA that fills up wasted corner space nicely but also groups up some of the plants that were taking up valuable desk space.

I also switched my desk out for a big kitchen table (also IKEA) as the studio grew so 2 computers can comfortably fit. Kitchen tables are great because they’re a pretty fixed, comfortable height, unlike a lot of desks I tested out which were too tall.

Nubby Twiglet | 5 Tips To Create a Personalized Workspace

4. Books and magazines

I’ll say it again and again: print isn’t dead! If anything, I appreciate my collection of books and magazines now more than ever. I love going out and searching for fresh print inspiration at Rich’s Cigar Store (magazines) and Powell’s and Anthropologie (books).

If you have an open wall in your place, you can create a simple display for them — Joey mounted leftover door moulding with metal dowels from the hardware store and it’s held up great.

Nubby Twiglet | 5 Tips To Create a Personalized Workspace

5. Plants, plants and more plants

Plants breathe instant life into any space and they’re an affordable way to add personality. I’ve bought most of mine from IKEA and Trader Joe’s and then picked up a few specialty cacti from Portland Nursery.

Plants not only look good but they give you a reason to get out of your seat and tend to them! Quick tip: I use a spray bottle to mist my cacti and succulents to avoid over-watering.

Nubby Twiglet | 5 Tips To Create a Personalized Workspace

After a lot of moving, unpacking and adjusting to a variety of workspaces, I’ve realized that it doesn’t matter how small or big your area is or even where it’s located as long as it feels comfortable and reflects your unique personality.

Nubby Twiglet | 5 Tips To Create a Personalized Workspace

I’ve worked in a bunch of spaces including my childhood room and transformation doesn’t take a massive budget or even much planning — it can happen with the tiniest shifts. Surrounding yourself with a few personalized touches can help your creativity thrive.

The Week In Pictures: 10.23.15

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures


Brrr! Baby, it’s cold outside! I hope you had a good week. I’ve been back home for a bit now but still feel like I’m settling in. This is the first time in three years I feel like I’ve been able to slow down, focus on getting my home and workspace just right and think about processes. It’s time to start asking myself: are things running as smoothly as they possibly can?

In an effort to make my workspace feel more personalized, I’ve been adding some special touches. Even the smallest details can make a big difference. I just finished burning the most amazing Jonathan Adler candle and planted some succulents — it’s a nice touch on my desk.

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

The coolest thing that happened this week: seeing Madonna live in concert. I was in total nosebleed seats and without my real camera but she still blew my mind. She’s been someone I’ve admired for a few decades now and getting the change to see her rock out in Portland with her Rebel Heart Tour was absolute magic. Her big smile and chatting in between songs reaffirmed why she’s had such a lengthy, successful career — she knows how to relate to her fans and is incredibly thankful. If you have a chance to catch her on tour, find a way to make it happen. It’s 100% worth it!

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

Over the weekend, I got to work on revamping my inspiration board. It’s to the right of our workspace area at Branch and had been the same since last November. I stripped it bare, kept a few old things and added in a bunch of new. Just that slight shuffle made a big difference. My favorite addition is that “Finish what you started” message. 😉

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

When I dreamed of having my own design studio years ago, I imagined my days being filled with clients who were more like friends. No drama, no micro-managing, just really good work. For the most part, things have turned out that way and Kat is one of the best clients around. Five years in, we have an almost psychic ability with her projects and she is amazing at sending gifts so on-point it’s like I have a personal shopper. This week, this notebook arrived and I am completely obsessed. So good, right?!

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

Another look at the office inspiration board — those lips HAD to stick around! If you want to build a big inspiration board of your own on a budget, check out this DIY post!

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

This message is now taped to my computer. I have these inspirational cards all over my spaces and if you want some of your own, they’re by Kikki K.

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

Still on a waffle kick! Normally I’m a Cheerios or yogurt sort of person but frozen waffles and a handful of berries make breakfast feel so much more fancy!

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

This Dapper and Wise sign is pretty awesome. If you’re visiting Portland, definitely stop in. Their decor (and chai) is some of the best around.

Have a great weekend, friends! I’m looking forward to hanging out with my dad (family time = absolutely necessary) and attending an early Halloween party. Do you know what you’re going to be yet? I always go as a nurse or Minnie Mouse since I have all the gear on hand. 😉

Let me know in the comments what you’re going as! xo

40 Blog Posts Of 2014: My Top Picks


Thanks for hanging out with me this year! I’m signing off until the end of the year to spend some time with my family but before I hang up my blogging hat, I wanted to share my top 40 posts of 2014 with you. Enjoy and have a happy holiday! -Shauna

Nubby Twiglet | Goodbye, 2014: My Top 40 Blog Posts

Design Tips and Tricks

1. 10 Tips To Get Your Work Noticed (and Land a Job!)

2. Prove You’re Capable Of Greatness Through Self-Initiated Projects

3. Search Out And Define Your Niche

4. Spice Up Your Blog With Photoshop Actions

5. One Year Of Running A Design Studio Plus 5 Tips For New Business Owners

6. Walking The Fine Line Between Inspiration and Imitation

7. Embrace Those Quiet Times…and 10 Ideas To Drum Up Business

8. My Game Changing, All-In-One Camera

Nubby Twiglet | Goodbye, 2014: My Top 40 Blog Posts


9. The Key To Building an Engaged Audience Plus 30 Ideas For Fresh Content

10. Successfully Selling Yourself Without Traditional Advertising

11. Create A Blog Manifesto

12. Keep Your Blog Files Organized

Nubby Twiglet | Goodbye, 2014: My Top 40 Blog Posts

Travel (Both Near and Far)

13. 15 Things To Do in New York City In One Day

14. Living It Up In San Francisco At The Haunted Mansion

15. McMenamins Cornelius Pass Roadhouse

16. A Less-Traveled View Of Palm Springs Plus 10 Tips To Make The Most Of Your Stay

17. The Venice Canals

18. The Ultimate WTF Moment in The Netherlands


Life Advice

19. What’s Your Personal Mission Statement?

20. Stop Playing It Safe

21. Can You Sum Up Your Focus For the New Year In One Word?

22. The Only Thing That Is Constant Is Change

23. The Comparison Trap: Your Life Isn’t A Highlight Reel

24. Fight The Fear

25. Stop Overthinking It

26. Say No For The Right Reasons

Nubby Twiglet | Goodbye, 2014: My Top 40 Blog Posts

Personal Style

27. A Casual Weekend In Venice

28. The Golden Hour

29. Black On Black

30. Tropical Stripes

31. Poolside In Palm Springs

32. Face-Off In San Francisco

Nubby Twiglet | Goodbye, 2014: My Top 40 Blog Posts


33. 5 Benefits Of Having A Creative Workspace Outside Of Your Home

34. 15 Awesome Artists To Cover Your Walls

35. Incredibly Strong DIY Shelving For Under 25 Dollars

36. The 2015 Day Planner Roundup

37. Build Your Own Inspiration Board

Nubby Twiglet | Goodbye, 2014: My Top 40 Blog Posts

And….The Best For Last

38. The Bathroom Saga

39. The Unexpected House Guest

40. A Studio Space Is In The Works