Now that we’re all spending a lot more time working from home, it’s a great time to put some real consideration into your home office.
When it comes to creating a modern home office, you’d be wise to first compile a checklist of what you need your space to do for you.
Ask yourself the relevant questions to help you narrow down your needs. Then, and only then, should you get to work creating your home office layout.
Here to pass on her wisdom and help you avoid a design disaster is Eclectic Creative’s interior designer and stylist, Jessica Viscarde.
Small space ideas
Not everyone has space to spare in their home offices! But don’t let that put you off – there are still plenty of ways to get the most from a small office.
1. Use the awkward nooks to your advantage
“I always look at and consider all the useable space in a home area – even the awkward little nooks,” says Jessica.
“More often than not, these areas are tucked next to a kitchen or an awkward void at the entrance of the house, which serves no purpose otherwise.”
Try filling them with storage – or failing that, fill them with nick-nacks that make you feel positive.
2. Use vertical space for storage
Jessica suggests looking up and utilising the vertical space above these nooks. “Include shelves if it makes sense, a floating timber table or a purpose-built desk with storage solutions.
3. Create custom storage systems
You can create a very useable space using inexpensive furniture systems from big brands such as Kmart and IKEA – just mix it up and don’t be afraid of asking for help from the experts who work in the store.
“I often advise going custom with a home office – it gives purpose to the space, function and, more importantly, it looks as if it’s meant to be there.”
What with so many sources of inspiration to look to (we’re talking Instagram, Pinterest and home improvement TV shows), we can sometimes get lost in creating a beautiful aesthetic, rather than a functional home office set up.
Jessica’s advice? “Write down a list of tasks you would like to conduct from your home office. This should help guide you in the right direction for choosing specific items to aid concentration and focus.”
Pinboards on the wall, a handy notepad and inspirational images scattered around an office space all help to remain productive, suggests Jessica.
“A good light source is also a must, and any unnecessary clutter should be stored away to avoid distraction!”
1. Select a desk
First thing’s first: You’ll need a desk to suit the needs of your work. Are you a digital nomad who hasn’t seen a piece of physical paper in years, or will you need plenty of spare space to lay out your notes?
Do you need a larger desk or are you fine with just a laptop stand? Does it need to have an adjustable height so you can sit and stand?
The type of work you perform will largely determine the size of your home office desk, but whatever you choose, try and look for a make with plenty of out-of-sight storage ideas. As Jessica says, “there’s nothing more distracting than unnecessary clutter!”.
2. Pick the right chair
Next thing is finding the perfect chair to go with the desk. If you like to switch between sitting and standing then look into a leaning stool, which can help your core stay active throughout your working day.
Or you can go for an ergonomic office chair that’ll allow you to be within reach of everything you need. Or maybe a comfy armchair is more your style?
“I prefer a home office to carry the same common thread as the other spaces in your home,” explains Jessica.
“For instance, instead of using a stock standard (and in my opinion, ugly) four-wheel office chair, choose a beautiful and comfortable occasional chair in a textured fabric or colour that blends seamlessly with the rest of your abode.”
So you’ve got a desk, a chair and some creative details. But what about the finishing touches that will really allow you to get cracking with style?
1. Greenery is a must
For both air quality and aesthetics, Jessica advises that you “inject some greenery on your desk or shelf by the way of an indoor plant or freshly cut flowers. And don’t forget an inspiring piece of artwork!”
2. Light is a key consideration
If your space is lacking a good source of natural light, invest in a quality desk lamp or standing light to help your office practical and enjoyable to be in.
3. Storage ideas that don’t hurt your eyes
Storage of books and paperwork isn’t just about practicality – make sure you like the style of storage you’re investing in.
Natural textures like cane baskets and timber desks mean the space will be more relaxing and enjoyable to be in. So if you can, be sure to these.