What Would Marie Do? | Marie Antoinette's Gossip Guide to the 18th Century: What Would Marie Do?

May 11, 2009

What Would Marie Do?

I received a What Would Marie Do question that I thought was so fun I would leave it open for all of you to help answer! Let's see how many solutions and ideas we can get here! Leave your ideas in the comments section! Links to pictures are welcome!!

Dear Marie,

I have a full time job and I work in an office cubicle, that is 2 walls, gray, an L shaped desk, and some gray metal cabinets. Nothing hangs on the walls except a calendar and some notes. It is so bare!

It is just not as 18th century fabulous as I would like. I know you would not, but if you worked in a space like this everyday, what would you do to infuse 18th century style into the space?

Thank you,

Cubicle Girl
My first suggestion is to switch out your calendar for a fabulous Art calendar with your favorite works in it!
Well readers, what do you think Marie would do? What would you do to create a fun space that is not disappointing to spend time in? I can't wait to hear what you come up with!


  1. A new chair or chair cover?
    A rug?
    Textiles covering desk?
    A table top chandelier or two? (Hard to find one that isn't ugly though!)

    I don't know what's allowed in cubicles! Fresh flowers (or even very realistic fake ones) really help though!

  2. Those are great suggestions! I don't even know what a tabletop chandelier is but I am sure small lamps are allowed! Love it!

  3. Here is a fabulous tip I've filched from several of my favorite decor websites: find a rich, Rococo-inspired wallpaper (perhaps something in lovely silk brocade?) and use a staple or nail gun (provided you are allowed) to secure it to the walls of your cubicle. You would not need much so you could really splurge on something rich and luxurious! Perhaps even something in shades of Marie's signature ice blue? It would really evoke a warmer atmosphere and then anything you added on top (perhaps a print or two of your favorite artist, a decadent little clock for your desktop, a beautiful piece of crystal, a handsome leather desk planner) would only accentuate the beauty of your background wallpapering! Good luck and I'd love to see photos when you're done.

  4. I would put a feather pen on it! just to accessories your desk. I nice fine leather desk planner with a nice emboss of your initials on the side. Austrian table clock too. You can customize your notepads, I know some stores do that with your initials on it. A nice rococo small picture frame of you and/or M.A. I think the frame will be the final touch of it...Good luck. I am thankful I dont work on those nasty cubicle...it's sooo dull, not to mention those silly rules on what you can put on your cubicle...

  5. Maybe if you're not allowed to actually cover the walls of your cubicle, you can find some super fancy frames and spray paint them white or gold, then frame prints or photos. or just hang them empty on the walls. Rough them up with a little sand paper for a shabby chic look.

    Even better would be some fancy trim molding, like stuff that goes around the top of a ceiling, and do the same- spray paint, sand paper.

    I second the fresh flowers. Flowers help everything. Small touches like pretty containers for lotion or anything else you'd normally keep on your desk are great, and shopping for them is really fun. Digging through flea markets and rummage sales is great fun.

    A nice white tablecloth over the desk would help a lot, too, or maybe just some lace doilies under things (like the vase!).

  6. I also suggest wallpaper or really cute wrapping paper and using push pins or a staple gun to secure it to the walls!!

  7. I can already tell all of you have the most exquisite offices! These are great ideas!

  8. Meredith, I love the empty picture frame idea! Of course maybe have a picture of your dog on your desk too so others know it's for the sake of decoration ;)

  9. my first thought was a calendar as well.

    i think a small figurine of some sort and if you are allowed, a candle that smells perfumy?


  10. I would invest in a few beautiful silk flowers and a pretty vase. Then I'd add some photos in gold frames and maybe a figurine. I would also be fun to add something inside the cupboards to make you smile when you open the doors. But I'd avoid stapling anything to the walls - it might look tacky and/or unprofessional and really annoy the boss! I like the art calendar idea but I'd nix the perfumed candle - someone in the office might be allergic or sensitive to scents.

  11. I thought of another thing. A very fancy pen/pencil holder, maybe bejewled and sparkly. If you can't find one in an office supply place, try a fancy cup that is meant for toothbrushes for the bathroom. Target has some amazing ones!!

  12. @YSLguy: That is such a great idea!! I think we should all check out Target for ornamented 'toothbrush/pencil cups'

  13. Wow! What great suggestions! Maybe a bit of pretty inspiration pics under glass as a desktop? A lamp would be nice too, maybe put the trash can way in the back or find a pretty one. How about a gold frame around the computer monitor?

  14. Wow, I do not work in a cubicle, TG!! But these tips are great. I'm inspired to deckout my studio, Rococo style... ;)

  15. Newchaircovers with frills and other trimmings to hide the ugliness. A portrait on the wall with a suitable calnedar,mini-chandelier, purchase a custom-made mousepad from photo-shops, maybe a screen on the door for privacy,a bowl ofcandy and small cakes for your workmates,a nice plushy rig and small trinkets on the desk!