10 Surprisingly Stylish, yet Functional Small Home Office Ideas
It is hard to establish a functional home office, let alone make it stylish. That is why functionality is a priority for many people who work from home as they believe that they have to sacrifice style in order to have a fully functional home office. However, there is no reason why not have both perks of working from home. The reason behind creating a home office is to mimic the conditions you would normally have at work, right? Well, there aren’t many ugly offices around because business owners are aware of the importance of the role décor plays in raising productivity.
Your home office can also benefit from increased productivity if you choose the right style. If the work you do is taking too much of a toll on you that your creativity is thwarted, here are 10 home office ideas that are both stylish and functional. The most surprising thing about them is the fact that you won’t have to put in a lot of hours nor invest huge sums of money to transform your home into a stylish, yet functional office.
Have you ever looked down a kitchen counter and thought that there was too much free space there? If you have, that means that you take great of storage space and believe that it should be used to the max. Your office might not be able to house (pun intended) a desk that runs for meters but you can get extra storage space if you mount super long shelves on the wall directly above the work area. There can be several rows of these shelves that would rise all the way to the ceiling.
Another advantage of this home improvement is the possibility to store different items on these shelves. You could keep work-related files on the lowest shelf, so you would have easier access but you could place vases, flower pots or other decorative pieces on higher shelves solely for aesthetic reasons. Finally, if you lack a proper bookcase you can use one of the rows of shelves to store your personal library.
A slab instead of the desk?
The search for the right desk and the office chair is often mission impossible because you are unable to match one to another. The only alternative you’re left with is to buy both of them at the same store, wasting your money in the end. However, if you’re willing to completely redefine the concept of what a work desk is, then you might be able to save some money and get a comfortable and sturdy desk in the process.
Some may deem it as too posh but actually a slab desk is more functional than you would think at first. Yes, we are speaking of a simple marble, granite or stone slab protruding from the wall to work a countertop for you to place your laptop on. The ideal location for the slab, i.e. the desk, is under or near a window and you can choose a swivel chair with metallic elements to match it with the style of the desk that should be sexy black.
A cramped office
One of the biggest issues apartment owners face when trying to create a home office is the lack of enough space. Global warming seems to have affected the size of our living quarters so people are forced to cramp their offices into larders even. This doesn’t necessarily have to be a bad thing because you can perceive a cramped office as an interior design challenge. Think in terms of the necessities and plan where the tabletop will go and if there’s enough room for a single office chair. Once these two conditions are met, you have your home office, the rest are just details. Bu wisely economizing space, you can literally create a home office behind your bedroom door!
A splash of colors
Another trick to make office appear bigger is to use vivid and light colors, such as green, blue or yellow. In fact, the color palette has the potential to make or break the look of a home office. By creating a vividly colored home office, you’re actually boosting creativity and productivity. Furthermore, if you choose the color green as the color of the wall in front of you, your eyesight will benefit, which is not a small thing considering how many hours you spend in front of a laptop on a daily basis. A splash of colors will go well with any office design because they will enliven the whole room.
An office or an art gallery?
Speaking of the wall right in front of you, using pictures and other artwork to decorate it could help you be more creative. A home office that has art present in it is considered the apex of stylish workspace. If you are unsure whether you go like this feature, you can always start small by nailing a single image on the wall in front of you. Once you test how this interior design feature influences your workflow, you may choose to add more images or other art forms.
Straight from the kitchen
In terms of location, most homeowners to place their office inside the living room or the bedroom, rarely in the kitchen. This is really all in relation with the layout of the apartment or house, as there are many homes in which the kitchen is fused with the living room or the dining room. This might act as a major distraction, but it makes getting up to get a cup of coffee a lot easier.
Inspired by such residential layouts, you should try to incorporate some kitchen elements in the home office to achieve ultimate functionality. The shelves above your head we wrote about earlier could feature a cabinet door where you would hold your mugs and coffee cups. In fact, you can even throw in a coffee machine on the work desk if you have enough space in order to have fresh coffee in a matter of minutes without ever having to get up. In fact, companies such as Bluepod Lavazza loan coffee machines to businesses and since you’re home office is technically a business, there is no reason not to enjoy in great Italian coffee.
The light source
After dark, there is only one feature inside the home office that takes precedence in terms of functionality and that is the lamp (or lamps). You need to have excellent visibility in case you need to write down something and it is this necessity to place a lamp on the desk that gives you the most room to be creative in terms of design. You could buy a lamp and simply place it on the table or you can mount the lamp to the wall next to you or you can attach it to the shelves above using a clip: the possibilities are really endless. If you’re a fan of industrial design then the lamp can actually be a light bulb that is coming down from the ceiling using a long cord.
The color green has such a beneficial effect on our organism because we associate it with the color of nature. So then, why not have the real thing instead of just the color! Even a single flower pot on your work desk can make a huge difference. There are numerous health benefits from keeping house plants, starting from the production of oxygen, all the way to having a natural humidifier.
Furthermore, if you like the sent flowers give out, then you will have a natural air-freshener. If you decide to plant lavender or jasmine, you’ll benefit from better-quality sleep which is very important because people often work next to their bed, thus associating it with work so their brain cannot shut off when they go to bed at night. Finally, don’t think of plants in a conventional way because the way you arrange them will reflect your style. Climbers, vegetable, large pots, vines, a plant stand or herbs: the end choice is up to you!
A vital component to functionality is comfort. We have already pointed out that the chair and the table need to be comfortable on their own but you can always boost the feeling of pleasure you feel every time you sit down at your computer. By placing faux fur over the seating area and the backrest, you get the ultimate feeling of luxury and comfort that will last for hours. What is more, the fur should not be limited to the chair only, as a fur mat or a rug will improve the décor of the room you’re working in. This effect is especially strong in winter because our brain associates fur with warmth, so we will feel all fuzzy on the inside, effectively raising our capacity for producing good-quality work.
Have you ever noticed that old English mansions usually have a desk right in front of those large, stately windows on the front of the house? This is not by chance, as the best source of light during the day is sunlight. By placing the desk right under the window pane, the person working benefits from huge amounts of light and a bonus perk.
Namely, if own a property with a view, whether it be a bay area or a mountainous landscape, use this vantage point as a design feature of the home office. A green wall, shelves, and artwork are all nice and all but they could never replace a room with a view. It might act as a distraction at first but soon you will learn to admire the scenery in front of you, which will help you relax, de-stress, and be more focused on the work ahead.
The 10 home office ideas listed here are ideal if you’re making a home office for the first time. Their real purpose is to teach you that a home office can be stylish and functional at the same time, regardless of its size. Even a cramped office can be functional with style so let your imagination and ingenuity run wild when creating the home office space. Who knows, after some time you might come up with home office design ideas of your own that you will share with your friends and coworkers.