Back to School: 15 A+ Modern Desk Essentials

By: Sarah Beaumont

August 1, 2016


Above image from West Elm


Whether you’re prepping your kids for their first day of school or heading off to college yourself, back to school season means it’s time to put forth your best organizational effort. But even you aren’t enrolled in classes, it doesn’t hurt to get into the hard-working, school spirit. From marbleized weekly planners to adorable pencil sets, these chic, modern desk essentials get an A+ for style.


Put a Cork in It

Back to School: 15 A+ Modern Desk Essentials, Laurel & Wolf, via / Etsy

via Etsy

What’s one of the simplest, least expensive ways to get your desk organized? A corkboard. First of all, cork is on the decor hot list right now. Secondly, it will allow you to pin up small, loose-leaf papers to prevent a messy stack from forming.

Pencil it In

Back to School: 15 A+ Modern Desk Essentials, Laurel & Wolf, via Domino

via Domino

If you think these pencils are too cute to resist, you’re totes on the same page as us.

Tape Time

Back to School: 15 A+ Modern Desk Essentials, Laurel & Wolf, via Poketo

via Poketo

A lot of people forget about things like tape and staplers… until they desperately need them. With ultra-cool, copper supplies by Tom Dixon, you’ll never find yourself hunting for a stapler or tape minutes before a big project is due.

Desk Organization for Days

Back to School: 15 A+ Modern Desk Essentials, Laurel & Wolf, via Poppin

via Poppin

No one does desk organization quite like Poppin. Having a colorful place to keep your paper clips, post-its, pens and paper ups your orderliness and study motivation.

Track Your To-Dos

When your to-do lists are this cute, it’s hard to forget your daily tasks. A DIY scroll like the one on the right makes it easy for you to tear a sheet off and refresh your duties whenever you finish.

Pens with Staying Power

Back to School: 15 A+ Modern Desk Essentials, Laurel & Wolf, via Brika

via Brika

Always losing your pens? Not anymore. You’ll notice if your ink is missing from this topsy-turvy pen holder. Plus, it’s fun to play with during a serious brainstorm sesh.

Plan Ahead

Back to School: 15 A+ Modern Desk Essentials, Laurel & Wolf, via Poketo

via Poketo

A planner is perhaps the greatest desk essential of all — especially when it’s as cool as one of Poketo’s marbelized versions. You can even match it to your notebooks. For a less glam, more utilitarian look, the journal planner will help you outline all your goals.

Calendar Call

Planners are important but it’s nice to have a monthly calendar on your desk for an easy overview of your schedule.

Track the Time

When you’re studying, checking the time on your phone can lead down a rabbit hole of procrastination. A desk clock will keep you focused, on task and on time.

Multi-Purpose Productivity

Back to School: 15 A+ Modern Desk Essentials, Laurel & Wolf, via Urban Outfitters

Bookend and Storage Lamp via Urban Outfitters

Nothing says organization like a multi-purpose piece. Add life to your desk with a plant holder, pen holder and bookend all in one. Everyone needs a good work light, and the one on the right just so happens to have space for all of your small office supplies.

Cord Command

Take command of your cords with a sleek, walnut cable manager. Simply take the lid off and snake cables through to hide them. For those long library nights, a 10-foot charger may come in handy. We love this nautical-inspired one from CB2.

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