Perk up your home office

Johannes van Graan Johannes van Graan
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Working from home sounds like a dream to most of us: slowly taking our time arising from our slumber, sipping on coffee, then dressing up in whatever we feel like (t-shirt and sweats?) before comfortably settling down and starting work. That may or may not be the case, depending on your work and deadlines, but one thing that everybody who works from home has in common is this: you need a home office that allows you to be at your most productive and/or creative! 

And even if you do commute to an office every day and you have a study at home, there is no reason that it should fall behind in terms of productivity potential or style! Brilliant work-friendly spaces differ from person to person, yet the following list is sure to help anybody who is seeking a refuge in their house to boost their productivity levels at the home office. Take a look…  

Do add a desk

classic Study/office by Le Fablier
Le Fablier

Scrivania Fioridipesco

Le Fablier

Your workspace can be as creative or corporate as you want it to be. But whether you have to squeeze your workstation into an existing room in your house, or have a standalone room you proudly call your office, you will need a desk. And your options are endless: from a sturdy, corporate desk that commands respect, to a sleek, modern surface that can double as a beautiful dining table. 

Spicing up your workspace really starts with your desk, and it needs to reflect your personality – do you want it vibey and funky? Professional and demanding? Whatever look you go for, be sure not to neglect the decor element of your desk – you can still add colour without compromising on your professionalism. 

Tip: Books are a prime element in office decoration. Add a bookshelf, stack up some magazines on the one corner of your desk, or add some colourful notebooks as a bright touch. 

Check out some inspiration for your home office/study.

Get creative with storage

scandinavian Living room by NSD New Swedish Design GmbH
NSD New Swedish Design GmbH

Der CD-Einsatz für das Billy Regal von Ikea

NSD New Swedish Design GmbH

A few essential elements are needed to have an efficient work area, and one of them is a place for storage. You don’t want to wind up with papers everywhere! If you’re the sort of person who forgets about something the moment it’s closed away, opt for open wall storage: magazine racks or floating shelves can be just as effective as a filing cabinet. But what if your compact office area lacks the space for adequate storage facilities? A vintage wooden box, shoved into a closet or under a desk, can be a great place to store magazines and paperwork! 

And if you’re using the spare bedroom as your office and don’t have space for additional storage? Try the closet, and incorporate a fancy little shelving system without impacting on your guests’ overnight visits. 

Remember: Organisation is the key to maintaining a healthy and productive working environment, regardless of whether you work at the office or at home.  

Tips: If you have a multitude of books on your bookshelf, break them up with some added pieces of decor (framed photos, small plants, trophies, etc.)

Have a seat

Sitting awkwardly while trying to concentrate on your deadlines is sure to influence your productivity. So, splurge on a chair that will make you want to put in extra hours! 

Your selection of seating should not only look fantastic in your office, but should support your back as well. Position your seating level so that when typing on your keyboard, your forearms are parallel to the floor. Adjust your chair so that your feet rest firmly on something, either on the floor or a footrest. It may sound obvious, but you need to love sitting in the chair you’re working in.  And make sure it doesn't swivel too easily – you don’t want to feel unstable while working. 

Tip: Your bedroom isn't solely intended for sleeping. Introduce a desk and comfy chair to join your workspace and bedroom together. Being smart about the decoration style will ensure that your work zone will feel like a natural extension of your slumber space.

A couch for comfort

Something not many home offices have is a nice, cushy sofa. But why a sofa in the office? Because it offers you a nice, soft and alternative spot to have a seat, either when you’re taking a coffee break, returning a phone call, going over some papers, attending a small business meeting, or even taking a quick power nap to recharge your battery! 

And when everything in your office is basically the same size, it can make the room feel small, tight and uninviting. A nice, big addition in the form of a sofa breaks the mould, and draws you in. It also anchors your seating area. And let’s not forget: it’s a great excuse to add additional decor to your home office. Scatter cushions, with a comfortable throw draped over it… the colour and styling potential! 

Tip: Have the extra space? A coffee table is your answer. It will make your home office seem more intimate and personal, plus you’ll have additional surface for decor or simple storage.

Light on the subject

classic Study/office by Celia Crego

There is no reason some sunlight should cramp your decor style. Natural lighting is a great companion, so be sure your home office is a room with a view, and set up your workstation close to a window. It allows contact with sunshine, and gives you a good reason to turn away from your work every now and then to enjoy the scenery.    

But even with fantastic natural lighting, you’ll still need additional illumination for when the sun can’t be relied on. A lot of overhead house lighting is deemed insufficient for working purposes: remember, your home office is where you need to be able to see and concentrate clearly. Try some table lamps, as they add a nice soft glow, and also offer extra decor possibilities. 

Tip: The top of your computer screen should be at eye level, or a bit below. This allows your eyelids to close a bit as you scan down your screen, moistening your eyes and reducing eye fatigue. 

For some fantastic ideas on home lighting, take a look at what FB Internacional can accomplish.

Accessorise, accessorise

It’s understandable that you want minimum distractions while working, but bare walls do make a room seem cold. Add some décor! There is no reason your home office should be bland. 

Consider the following touches to spice it up: 

• A notice board, detailing reminders, deadlines, etc.  

• Photographs of friends and family members (the frames offer extra potential for more colour and style)  

• Flowers or plants  

• Some art pieces adorning the walls 

• Colourful stationery 

• Your favourite mug 

• Candles 

• Books or magazines.

Don’t underestimate the effect small items can have on a large space. It’s the little items that can make an office seem more appealing and cosy.  

Tip: No extra room to serve as a home office? Then search for that extra space in your home that can be your workstation (bedroom, living room… ) – just be sure your work area doesn't cramp your decorating style. Focus on blending in in terms of colour palette, style, materials, etc. 

Feast your eyes on these 8 Stylish Home Office and Workspaces.

What other ideas can you think of to make your home office a prime work environment?
modern Houses by Casas inHAUS

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