For many people, working from home is one of the greatest advantages of modern technology, since it allows you to stay in the comfort of your own home and avoid the daily hassle of commuting but still get all the work done.
However, not everyone can boast with a large and spacious home office that leaves enough room for comfortable furniture and necessary storage. Most people get by with a nook or a corner, or a small, spare room-turned-office space. That is a genuine challenge to organise and design as it doesn’t leave much choice.
If you’re struggling to design your home office to be more functional and professional, here are some easy tips.
Make it bright
Poorly lit workspaces can cause serious problems, such as headache, fatigue, irritation and reduced creativity and productivity. To avoid that in your home office, make sure you use all the natural light you can. First, don’t put your desk in the darkest corner of the room facing a wall. You’ll only recreate a corporate cubicle. Quite contrary, put it by the window, parallel to the panes and in this way, you won’t only bask in the natural light, but you’ll also be able to rest your eyes from work by enjoying the scenery outside.
While natural light is the best choice, you’ll still need the help of additional lighting when it gets darker in the evening. Avoid overhead lights as they might cast a shadow and can be quite cold, as if you were working in a hotel lobby or a dentist’s waiting room. Instead, opt for a table lamp and a couple of corner floor lamps, as they add warmth and a soft glow.
Create ample storage
Good organization is key to a professional appearance of your home office. With files and papers lying all around, the space will instantly feel cluttered and claustrophobic, so the best thing to do store it all away neatly at the end of the day. Whether it’s filing cabinets or open bookshelves, make sure everything has its place and you’ll feel less pressured and more motivated to get things done.
Spruce up your walls
Aesthetics may not be the first thing you have in mind when designing your home office, but how you decorate the walls that surround you can have a great impact on your productivity and motivation. Don’t go for beige as it will feel like a cubicle, but don’t make it too decorated either. The key is personalizing the space by finding the right balance.
One way to go is to frame your favourite travel memorabilia or music album covers. Bringing in nature is always beneficial so you can easily find high-resolution images of breathtaking nature scenes and blow them up into poster-sized prints, or you can cover the walls with unique, organic decorative panels that will not only add an interesting design and texture, but can also provide a soundproof environment needed for your work.
Be picky with furniture
While you’re browsing the Internet looking for inspiration and admiring those dreamy upholstered dining room chairs or tiny vintage desks, bear in mind that neither of those will accommodate your need for a comfortable chair that supports your back or give you lots of desk storage for all your papers and files.
With all the phones, computers, Internet cables and routers, it’s easy for any home office to appear messy and cluttered. The best way to go is wireless as it will eliminate the danger of tripping and give the office a more minimalistic, cleaner and more professional appearance. However, going completely cordless may not always be possible, so try running a power strip behind your desk and plugging everything there, or buy tools that can help you bunch those wires together and hide them out of plain sight.
A home office is a great modern perk that can help you achieve a better work-life balance, but the last thing you want is to have it looking unprofessional and messy. The upside is you get to decorate it the way you want to and make it a comfortable workspace and leave the best first impression when your clients visit. With tips outlined here, you’ll be able to transform it into an inspiring space where you can create new ideas and enjoy while doing it.
This post is contributed by Catherine, she is a passionate home design consultant from Melbourne. She loves making homes beautiful and buildings sustainable, but she also like sharing her advice and knowledge with people. That is why she is also a regular contributor to the Smoothdecorator blog. Besides all this, she loves reading and enjoys a superhero movie from time to time.