It’s no secret that COVID-19 has made working from home become the new normal. People draw inspiration from their surroundings when they work, but when they are working remotely, their environment becomes stagnant, so they run into creative blocks. Changing where we work can help revive our imagination by entering new spaces to draw inspiration. Recently, I have visited coffee shops all over the DFW area in order to find the best chai tea latte in the metroplex. Getting to venture into coffee shops has allowed me to step back into a more productive version of myself. I’ve found myself drawing inspiration from a “radiate positivity” sticker on the back of a girls laptop. People are always inspiring to me as well. I always ask baristas what their favorite thing on the menu is, and sometimes they get so passionate about the “why” that it reminds me to be passionate about mine. On top of that, the people that walk into coffee shops wear what I like to call “coffee shop chic.” They just look cool and immediately I am daydreaming of recreating the outfits.
The common thread here is people. Being surrounded by people is an immediate mood booster because even when I’m surrounded by strangers, I feel a sense of community. People are trendsetters, and as someone working with brands, it is important to always be connecting and observing in some way. I find that coffee shops are the best places to consume this kind of information. It is our job to make connections with consumers through our work, which means to best understand them, we need to be engaging with people and society as a whole. We are always trying to adapt our work to the changing world around us.
Over the last few months, I have been to so many coffee shops that I realized I’ve developed a preference depending on the tasks I have to complete. When I have a lot to do, I prefer a quieter spot where I can easily focus. If I have a zoom to join, I always prefer a more lively atmosphere. I also find myself gravitating towards coffee shops that make me want to take pictures of their drinks or my surroundings and add them to my Instagram stories. In my opinion, for a coffee shop to be perfect, the tables have to have chargers, the chai has to be spicy, and the aesthetics have to be good. I’ve consumed all of this caffeine so that I could become a self-proclaimed connoisseur and share my knowledge.
Here’s a list of my top five coffee shops in the DFW area that are “work from home” approved!
1. Summer Moon
Summer Moon is one of my favorite places to go. It is famous for its Moon Milk -- a signature sweet cream! It’s a family run business that began in Texas and is committed to kindness and their philosophy of inclusiveness. Summer Moon believes that coffee brings people together, and I couldn’t agree more. It has two floors of seating and the trick to finding a spot is getting there early because it fills fast! This is also the only place that I have an exception to my chai rule. I recommend getting a Winter Moon. I promise it won’t disappoint! The bottom level is often louder than the top, so you almost get the best of both worlds. The Summer Moon on Main Street in Fort Worth, in particular, gives off a comfortable at-home vibe with the whitewashed wood and the shop provides charging stations at the common tables to encourage working from their coffee shop.
My favorite location can be found at 625 S Main St, Fort Worth, TX 76104!
La La Land gives me the same feeling that a nice summer day does. Out front sits an old yellow GMC and the building is surrounded by a white picket fence. When you walk inside, you see that everything is yellow, and it screams happiness! There are two locations in Dallas, but I prefer the one on Bell Avenue. This is another place where it’s best to get there early in order to find a seat because it’s a popular place. The upside is, there is no bad seat inside or outside! This is a place I especially like to go when I’m in a creative funk because the people that work there live up to the “Kind Cafe” aspect. I always leave there smiling because of their hospitality! I find that the good vibes and lively atmosphere make for the perfect setting if it’s a day that has a light workload. Of course, I recommend ordering a chai, but the Mint Chocolate Matcha also hits the spot!
This shop can be found at 5626 Bell Ave, Dallas, TX 75206.
Sons of Liberty is in downtown Fort Worth off of Lancaster. It’s a classic. To know it is to love it. Ole reliable if you will. The interior is industrial chic and is filled with long tables that have charging stations in front of every other seat. This is a coffee shop where work is meant to be done. It isn’t uncommon to see people set up camp at a table for hours, so it inspires a sense of a faux workplace. A workplace with cool baristas and an endless coffee supply. This coffee shop is slightly quieter than the others I’ve mentioned, but it is still brimming with people during peak hours. This is a spot that I would go to if I had a lot to do but still wanted to be surrounded by people.
This shop can be found at 250 W Lancaster Ave #120, Fort Worth, TX 76102.
George is a coffee house tucked in Coppell, TX. It’s always quiet here. You’ll often see college students studying because of its many options for privacy. There are booths that you can tuck yourself into and what seems like an endless amount of seating. It's all-white walls and counters create a perfect distraction-free atmosphere for those days that you really need to focus on the task at hand. Again, I recommend the chai!
This shop can be found at 462 Houston St, Coppell, TX 75019.
Inclusion Coffee is a spacious, two-level building that is in downtown Arlington. Their mission is about accepting people and all of their differences, which I love. I draw inspiration from this space alone because it's industrially designed on the interior and feels so modern yet comfortable with its large glass windows and exposed air vents. I’ve never seen it too busy, which is nice because half the struggle with venturing to a coffee shop is finding a seat! Their seasonal menu is often where I find myself ordering because they always have something new that sounds enticing! My favorite from the menu was an item I ordered last fall. It was an apple crumble chai that I don’t think I will ever forget about.
This shop can be found at 101 E Abram St #110, Arlington, TX 76010.
Inspiration at Coffee Shops
After months and months of coffee shop hopping, I’ve found these shops to be the ones I gravitate towards. Changing up my work environment has helped me find ways to constantly find inspiration. Something else I’ve learned along the way is that the more often I visit a location, the more I get to know the other regulars and baristas. I almost look forward to the familiar faces at this point! I always leave these coffee shops and conversations with coffee shop friends with new information and experiences that carry into my work. What that looks like is often just positivity. The interactions I have with the people around me often put me in a positive mindset, inspiration is easily found when I enter work with an open and positive mind!
Hannah Boss is a self proclaimed chai tea latte connoisseur, enneagram 3w4, full-time student and account planner at Roxo Agency. Currently, she’s a Junior at TCU majoring in Strategic Communication with a minor in Religion and Political Science.