Top tips for creating a home office
With millions of people currently based at home – and many considering a permanent shift to remote working – the need for practical, stylish home offices has never been greater. Here are a few useful ideas for creating a workspace that helps you stay focused, positive and productive – whether you have a whole room, a kitchen corner or just a tight spot beneath the stairs.
Think about how you like to work
Being home-based gives you the opportunity to tailor your working environment to you, without having to worry about colleagues. Where it’s situated and how it’s set up can have a big impact on your efficiency and wellbeing, so before you do anything take time to think about how you function best. It’s a very personal thing, and there are no right or wrong answers.
Be creative with space
You might assume you lack the space for a dedicated work area, but a bespoke build can help you make the most of any unused nook, no matter how small or awkward. Alcoves, voids beneath sloping ceilings, even empty hearths… With a bit of thought and some clever design tricks, they can all be transformed into effective office corners.
No home is too small to accommodate a workspace, as this wraparound desk and shelving combination demonstrates.
Consider work-life balance
When you’re home-based it’s easy to fall into the trap of never properly switching off, so it’s crucial you establish some boundaries between work and leisure time. Creating a physical separation between your workspace and areas of the home meant for rest and relaxation is an important part of this – after all, no-one wants a pile of unfinished work distracting them while they’re trying to unwind or drift off to sleep. If you don’t have a whole room to use as an office, how about a desk hidden behind cupboard doors? Not only will it help keep your home looking tidy and clutter-free, it will also mean you can shut away your computer and to-do list the minute the working day is over. Out of sight, out of mind!
This cupboard and shelving unit matches the kitchen seamlessly and has a pull-out desk disguised as a drawer. If desired, doors could be added to the front, allowing the home-owner to hide work items away in seconds.
Find a comfortable position
Working from home often means spending even more time sitting at a desk than normal, as there are no commutes, water-cooler chats or face-to-face meetings to break up the day. Setting reminders to get up and move around is key, but so are comfort and posture. One of the advantages of bespoke office furniture is that it can be designed entirely around you, with everything at exactly the right height and angle. You might even want to consider a desk that can be raised and lowered, allowing you to work standing up for an hour or two.
Effective storage is vital in any home office. A made-to-measure design can squeeze drawers, shelves and cupboards into the tightest of spots, helping you stay organised and focused. Or, if you have an open-plan space, you can use shelving as a room divider, screening your desk from view and creating a quiet area away from the hustle and bustle of daily family life.
Here, a bespoke shelving unit has been used to separate the office area from the rest of an open-plan home, providing privacy and storage.
Think about lighting
Good lighting is another workspace essential. If you’re converting a corner without much natural light of its own, you might want to consider adding integrated LED lighting. Conversely, if your desk sits in a well-lit corner, make sure you can angle your computer screen away from reflections and glare.
Keep cables tidy
Trailing wires are a real hazard – especially if you have young children at home – and they certainly don’t contribute to a calm, productive atmosphere. Custom-built office furniture can be designed around plug sockets and built with cable-management features to keep leads safely tucked away.
Add some personality
Finally, workspaces needn’t be devoid of character. Adding a few stylistic touches can bring your home office to life, making it a more inviting place to spend time and fuelling your creativity. Try hanging artwork, adding a few family photos and plants, or making a statement with the trim and finish you choose. You could even use paint and wallpaper in interesting ways, creating contrast or harmony according to your personal preferences and tastes.
Shaker-style woodwork creates an elegant, timeless look that suits this Bristol period property perfectly. The shelving extends above and around the door, providing lots of storage and display space.
If you’d like to talk to us about creating a home office or workspace, just get in touch to arrange an initial chat. We cover Bristol and around, and we’ll work with you to design a bespoke solution that suits your needs and home.