If you’ve ever worked in a windowless cubical, used a too-small desk, or spent your workday sifting through a cluttered, disorganized home office you know how much a workspace can negatively affect your productivity. With many Americans now working in remote or hybrid positions, we are spending a greater amount of time in our home offices. And let’s be honest, though working from home can have many benefits, if your space is messy or distracting, you probably aren’t getting the most out of your workday.
At Studio M we believe that the quality of your home office is a direct reflection of the quality of work you get done inside of it. We want to help you make the most out of your home office and create a space that not only inspires productivity but is one you actually ENJOY being in.
On today’s blog we are going to share with you 6 tips on how to inspire your workflow through your home office design.
Cluttered spaces can have a negative effect on our stress and anxiety levels, as well as our ability to focus, our eating choices, and even our sleep. Clutter also encourages procrastination which is the opposite of what you want in your work environment! A clean and organized space can improve your ability to focus, process information, and be productive. It can also help you feel more confident when your room is orderly.
Our favorite way to manage storage and keep an office organized is through cabinetry design. Built-ins are a great way to store, organize, and even display items in a way that’s both convenient and stylish. Designing storage into your desk is another great way to optimize your space. Drawers and pull-outs will help you keep papers, folders, and other items organized. Also consider drawer dividers for your smaller office items like pens, post-its, and thumb tacks. No one likes a messy junk drawer!
Another great way to minimize visual clutter in your office design is to hide cords. Between multiple desktops, monitors, printers, and other miscellaneous plug ins, our home offices tend to have lots of cords. While these cords are necessary for a functioning workspace, they tend to add a lot of visual clutter to an office design. Integrating outlets or desk grommets into your cabinetry to organize your cords helps make them less visible and more accessible. The goal is to have access to all your cords and outlets without them being an eyesore.
Lastly, the key to an organized office is simply to create a home for everything! When everything has a place, there is less time spent searching for what you need! Work with your cabinet designer on creating storage solutions for all of your office essentials. This is also a great way to keep your office tidy and clean. When everything has a home, you are more likely to return your items back where they belong at the end of every workday.
This home office utilizes cabinet doors and drawers to conceal and organize items as well as open shelving which allows decorative pieces and photos to be displayed. Creating the perfect balance of stylish and functional.
Lighting, both natural and artificial play a large role in an office design. Not only does exposure to natural light improve sleep, productivity, cognitive performance, and alertness, it can help ward off seasonal depression and anxiety.
Natural sunlight is also proven to boost serotonin levels and increase energy which are two things that are immensely beneficial in your work environment! If possible, try to emphasize natural sunlight in your home office design. That means including sheer curtains as opposed to heavy drapery and positioning your desk/cabinetry so that it doesn’t obstruct any windows. In regard to desk positioning and sunlight, it’s also important to position your desk with respect to the sunlight shining in from the window to avoid glare and inevitable eye strain. If possible, your monitor should be positioned at a right angle from the window.
If your home office doesn’t have any windows, adding a lightbox can be a great solution to getting some additional light in your space! Light boxes simulate natural sunlight and will help brighten your space, especially in those cold winter months.
In addition to the standard overhead light and lamps, consider integrating lighting into the cabinetry that surrounds your desk. This will not only help illuminate your workspace, but it will create a brighter space overall. Integrating lights in shelving is such a great way to minimize dark corners in your office space, plus they add a stylish element to your design!
3. MAXIMIZE YOUR WORKSPACE
Our desks have a tendency to reflect the state of our brains, so if your desk is a disorganized disaster, chances are your brain is feeling a little cluttered as well. By utilizing your cabinetry, you are able to keep items organized and off your desk.
In addition, your home office should allow for a large enough desk that you are able to house both your computer and keyboard, while also maintaining room for paperwork, a planner, and whatever you might need that day. By including a spacious workplace in your design, you will avoid feeling cramped and boxed in.
Not every workspace allows for a large desk, so it’s important to talk with your designer on how you can maximize your workspace for your specific home office. With a little clever planning they can create a work area that is efficient and suits the size of your space.
Short on space? No problem! This home office was installed with limited square footage, but contains proper lighting, storage, and desk space.
4. LEAN INTO YOUR STYLE
It’s proven that the spaces we spend time in directly correlate with our mood. Things like paint color, fabric, and lighting all play into the feelings we get when we are inside a certain environment. In a similar way design can positively affect our mood, a design can also do wonders in inspiring creativity. By leaning into your personal style, you can create a space that is the best reflection of yourself and perfectly in tune with your creative channels. Whether it’s a bright, modern inspired space, or more of a moody, transitional design, your designer will be able to help you hone your personal style and turn it into your dream office.
Some office trends we are seeing in 2023 are colorful cabinetry, especially blues and greens, bold patterns on things like wallpaper and upholstery, and wall texture through wood panels and trim.
The dark blue paint color and patterned rug in this office are a stark contrast to the rest of the home’s design. But that’s the beauty of a home office; it can have a design unique in itself!
5. CONSIDER YOUR JOB IN YOUR CABINETRY DESIGN
Just as you consider your lifestyle in your kitchen design, you should consider your job in your office cabinetry design!
For instance, if you print on a daily basis think about incorporating a space for your printer into your cabinetry. Or if you keep a lot of documents or files, then drawer pull-outs are a great option for your design!
The key to designing your office cabinetry around your profession is to think about what tasks you do daily, and how your cabinetry can function to make those tasks more efficient.
Fun fact! The lower cabinet doors to the right of the desk actually conceal this homeowner’s printer! The printer lies on a sliding shelf which allows for easy access.
6. CREATE BALANCE IN YOUR SPACE
Another important thing to consider in your office design is creating balance in the space. In addition to cabinetry and storage, you have to consider other areas that are important to your work environment. If you often meet with coworkers or clients, dedicate an area of your office to a casual sitting area. A few comfy chairs and a coffee table will do wonders in creating harmony in your design!
We spend SO MUCH time in our offices, so creating a balanced design is necessary in maintaining a happy and productive space.
When your job is such a large part of your daily life, it’s important to make your work environment a place that’s productive and enjoyable! We hope that by implementing some of these design suggestions you can make the most out of your home office and create a space that inspires you. Ready to get started on creating your dream office? Contact us to learn more!