British working hours are on average the longest in Europe according to a research project by The Work Foundation. With us all spending more time in our office space it is important to include details that will inspire and create a comfortable place to work. What do you think your home office space says about you?
|Image from the timefinder.com|
I recently completed an office renovation for Zircon Management Consulting (to read more visit here), which embraced a more feminine office environment rather than the traditional rows of desks approach. Think large crystal pendants, the iconic Bourgie table lamps and patterned wallpaper.
The majority of Zircon’s staff work either remotely or from home, as are an increasing number of the working population in the UK. Below are some ideas for creating a space in your home for an office that will boost your productivity and increase creativity
Creating a home office
Locating your home office in a dedicated room gives you the luxury of privacy and being able to shut the door on your work at the end of the day. It also means that you don’t have to consider your home office blending into an existing scheme or having to have a clear desk policy.
|Dan Brunn image via Contemporist.com|
However, not everyone has space to dedicate a whole room as an office in their homes. But with some thought and possibly some cunning, there are ways to make it fit. Consider firstly are there any spaces in your home that could work harder. Could your guest bedroom have a desk added (image below)? Do you have a large landing or corridor being underutilized? Could you make a workspace in your kitchen or living room?
|Kimberly Canale’s bedroom office via designsponge|
Ask yourself what you really need from your home office. My good friend is a proof reader and just needs a quiet, comfortable space to read with good light? But do consider whether you will need a phone line/broadband, a printer or anything else that might require cables, so you can plan for them.
Creating a home office space that is comfortable will increase your productivity. If you are going to be working on a computer purchasing a good quality, supportive office chair will pay dividends. Sitting in an awkward position can put your body under all sorts of stress. Do make sure you can adjust the chair’s height and angle to suit you. You’ll also need to leave between 70-80cm clearance behind the chair to pull it out easily.
Well thought-out storage is crucial no matter the size of the space and de-cluttering is a prerequisite. Consider furniture that can be dual purpose like ottomans and also consider decorative or unusual items. This used Brasso tin makes a great desk tidy and the vintage bobbin drawer is the perfect size for wallpaper samples. It reflects who I am, not a preconceived notion of what an office should be like.
|Kate Durkin via designsponge|
Make sure you consider lighting both natural and artificial. A well-lit workspace is fundamental to creating a productive and comfortable working atmosphere. It will also prevent eye strain, headaches and in my case silly mistakes.
My biggest tip though is to make your home office about you. You don’t have to have functional task lights; maybe you’d rather have table lamps. You don’t have to have a desk; maybe an antique table is more your style. Maybe you want to use wooden wine boxes as shelving – a great way to up-cycle. Fresh flowers, absolutely. Which is why I love the below from Christiane Lemieux of Dwell Studio new book Undecorate – this is a very personal home office space
|image from Christiane Lemieux book Undercorate via designsponge|
AND if you really don’t have a spare room in your home, you could invest in a beautiful garden home office or consider converting your garage. I’m particularly taken with the Archipod home office below; I’d feel like I was in a Children’s TV show – brilliant!
If you’d like to talk to me about redecorating your home office space here’s how