Your move into your new space is complete and furniture is in place, but your new office space is still missing that certain energy or atmosphere you desired. You should budget for art and accessories. Just as the perfect dress needs the right necklace and earrings, or the perfect suit needs the right tie, your office needs the right art and accessories. The finishing touch to your new office space cannot be an afterthought. Just as your office space was carefully developed, your finishing touches are as well.
How much money do I need for art?
The art and accessories for your office do not have to be expensive but they are necessary to give it that finished appeal. You need to include it in your budget up front.
The cost of art and accessories can be extremely expensive if you are an art aficionado, such as $1000’s for a single piece. But to get a great, completed finish for your space, high dollar pieces are not the only options.
Straight to the point: We typically start the budget at $300 for each piece of artwork and $100 for each patient care poster. This establishes a good overall budget that also allows us to shift money if necessary. For example, we may spend up to $500 for a piece that we really love in a key spot, and then only $100 or less for pieces that are a little more basic.
You can buy art many different places. At big box stores, such as Target and IKEA, you can buy a wide range of pre-framed art, or you can find a little bit more upscale art at specialized places like Z Gallery or West Elm. You can also find a variety of unframed art on websites such as Art.com and Prints.com. You can get any unframed item framed at a local frame store or buy the correct sized frame separately online or in any of the above mentioned places. We have seen some incredible pieces which consisted of a photo purchased on line, and then printed and framed using a ready-made frame with a large white mat.
It’s easy to find pieces that fit your style and budget almost anywhere! We sometimes recommend taking a picture of where you want to place your art or the colors in your office that you want to complement. Next time you are out running errands or browsing online, make sure you look out for pieces that catch your eye. Don’t be afraid to check re-sell sites or visit a local art gallery or artist festival, or even farmers markets. Some established practices will even ask patients or staff to create pieces, which really adds a personal touch to any space. Great art is all around us!
One important thing to know about framing: it can turn a mass-produced poster into a masterpiece or a masterpiece into a mistake. There are a couple of general tricks that work for most pieces. First, always frame inexpensive pieces so that it doesn’t look like it has substance and artistic flare. Usually, we suggest a mat of at least 3 to 4 inches in width. Make sure the frame is not out of proportion to the art itself. Typically, mats are not colored, as this can date the picture faster, but are neutral white, off-white or black. Michael’s is a great place for inexpensive framing, (always look for coupons online too!) If you have a great art gallery that you work with, they can help guide you through the process. Even as designers we quite often use art galleries and their expertise in matting and framing. The frame can make or break the piece so when in doubt, seek an expert out.
Patient Care Posters
Make sure that your patient care pieces are framed and hung appropriately. We have seen a lot of patient care posters framed in really inexpensive frames and hung incorrectly (by the lip of the frame), usually creating a bow at the top, and frames that are never level. Needless to say, that is very cheap looking when you have a beautiful space. Contrary to popular belief, you need to budget for these posters too. We usually budget $100 each – which would cover both ready- made frames for common sizes and custom frames for posters that are odd sizes. Make sure your frames compliment each other and try to group like frames. Our favorite look is a set of posters in matching frames grouped together as a single “piece.” Main take away, to keep your polished look, frame your posters well too.
To give your space the final touch, you need to have a few decorative accessories. This can include a vase on an end table, a bowl on your front desk, a nice book on your coffee table, a pretty clock on the wall, a floral piece in the restroom, just to name a few. Our favorite accessories for a life-giving practice like yours are plants! Go for live, greenery if you have the light, or silk for adding “life” in a dark area.
Check out our other blog about art:
Looking for more help?
Our Designers work with all ranges of budgets and styles everyday. We know exactly how to save you money, time and frustration when it comes to the design process. Set up your no obligation consultation today to learn more about how we “Bring Your Vision to Life!”