How To Spruce Up Your Office Desk

How To Spruce Up Your Office Desk

People with office jobs spend a large part of their waking hours sitting at a desk, one probably chosen for its utilitarian qualities. As long as you’re there, why not make it a more pleasant place to be?

The office can be made into a cosy, pleasant, and cheerful space, even if you have to stack colourful doodads on every surface. Or just a few accent pieces, if that suits you better. Tastes vary widely, as Redditor u/Caddap found when they asked Reddit, “For those with office jobs, what little touches have you added to make your desk a little more pleasant?

Pictures and Light

Pictures of friends and family can always be a nice reminder of who you’ll get to see when you finally escape your work day, but a few people had more creative use of images, like u/mountaindynamic:

My desk faces a wall in a windowless office so I printed out and put up a picture of a window with a garden view. You’d be surprised to know it actually helps.

This is not an uncommon solution to no windows; and you can make it even more effective like u/alittlehygge:

I do the same thing and I have a sunlamp. I even caught myself zoning out while I look out my “window” when I’m thinking. It does help a lot with the lack of windows.

Lamps in general were popular as a way to make a space feel cozier; if not an actual sunlamp, one you can turn on that isn’t as harsh as an overhead makes a much more pleasant environment to work in.


A lot of people said they collected souvenirs, like u/cascua, for whom it’s a part of the job:

Me and my team travel a lot for work, so every time we go to a new country we get each other souvenirs. My desk is a hodgepodge of souvenirs of all over the world

What looks like nothing to someone else might be a reminder of a nice experience you had or are hoping to do again. If you are travelling, pick up something nice to remember it by; then when you’re at work, you can remind yourself that you are an intrepid adventurer as well as a desk jockey.


If you do have a window, a plant is always a cheerful addition. It’s another living thing to cultivate. Maybe you don’t think of yourself as a plant person, but reading u/GlockTheDoor description of their desk companion and be inspired:

I’ve been growing an African violet from one-ish leaf for the past 4 years! It now has 4 separate crowns and is glorious!

Redditor u/dskentucky has made their plant into a shared office experience:

I have a jade plant that I won spinning the wheel at a church carnival a few years ago. I’ve repotted it in a big pot and when it’s leaves fall off we root them in the same pot. When they start thriving on their own they are open for adoption by the team. I can imagine fifty years from now the whole office having members of the jade plant family everywhere.

Bring a little green into the room with a plant friend—and if you really have room you can do what u/1kSuns did and get a fish:

Fish tank. 34l cube tank with a betta in it. He’s my buddy, and we both hate my boss.

And in-office pet sounds lovely. As long as it lives.

A Tiny Carpet

This wasn’t on Reddit, but when the Lifehacker staff was surveyed, two people had tiny carpets, which does suddenly make a desk look very homey:

Other Lifehacker staff desk items included lotions for dry hands, nice teas, a miniature marquee, a troll doll, crystals, and a sculpture made by a child that merits a full description:

It’s a blob-person and a blob-dinosaur, and the dinosaur kind of melted so it looks really sad. So he put the person’s arm around the dinosaur, and drew labels on a piece of paper under it: the person is him, the dinosaur is me, so now it depicts him cheering me up when I’m down, PLUS every time I look at it I get to imagine I’m a dinosaur.

Whatever makes your heart sing — or at least helps you get through the day.

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