We’ve talked before about the functional aspects of creating a home office. How to make it productive, creative and inspiring. We may well touch on a couple of them again here but today, what we really want to do is give you some ideas on how to style your home office. As the name suggests, this office is part of your home. You don’t want something stark and purely functional. You want it to look and feel as if it belongs.
Define the Space
If you don’t have a dedicated home office or study, or if you are creating an extra working space, it is even more important to think about styling. Whether you are setting up on a landing, under the stairs or in a guest bedroom, try to define your working space. This is actually easier than it sounds. You just need something to set a boundary. It could be something as simple as a rug that marks out your ‘office’. A bookshelf is not only a great way to define the edge of your space, it is also a very handy way of keeping all the things you need to hand, and your desk clutter-free. A luxurious sofa makes a great demarcation line – and you can choose something to blend with the existing décor or add a splash of colour to differentiate between living space and workspace. A dedicated screen is a luxury but one we absolutely love. Don’t go for something bland and functional. Go for something that you adore. If none of the above are suitable, try using a line or curve of large, luscious plants. They will screen your space and bring a bit of much-needed outdoors indoors.
- High End Italian Handmade Rug£15,112.00
- London Collection Modern Aged Oak Veneer Large Book Shelf£35,845.00
Style your Home Office with Colour
This is really an extension of defining your space. Colour can really affect our mood and productivity, which is why it is important when you style your home office. As we’ve said, however, this is part of your home so you have to use colours you are comfortable with. If you have a separate home office, you can choose whatever colours you like, to inspire, to calm, to boost brain activity or creativity. If you are working within the confines of a multi-functional room, you could try a panel of a complementary colour several shades darker than the current wall. You could create a complete contrast by choosing a colour from the opposite side of the colour wheel. Take a look at some of the fabulous wallpapers available. You could even consider making a padded panel using a contrasting fabric.
How does Colour affect your Productivity?
Different colours can inspire, calm or distract. So the colours you choose when you style your home office or workspace are an important consideration. Below is a simplified explanation of how different colours can work with or against us but it is a good starting point.
Boosts brain activity, boosts heart rate, inspiring but can be enervating
Calming, lowers heart rate and blood pressure, good for detail
Stimulating, good for high energy, creative spaces
Boosts creativity, inspires innovation, reduces eye strain, good for spaces with computers
Can zap confidence so use with caution, choose warmer greys, good for offsetting other colours
Gives a feel of freshness, space and light, promotes creativity
Calm and comforting but try to include deeper shades
Splashes of bright colours can be inspiring and creative but use them carefully – you want to inspire, not distract
Mirrors and Pictures
Mirrors are a great way of reflecting both natural and ambient light. They also increase the feeling of space. An oversized mirror can be a great addition to a home office space. It makes it look more like home and less like an office. If you find a mirror too distracting, large artworks or a gallery wall can also create a warm, homey atmosphere. If you want something with attitude and a sense of fun, we love this gallery of plates by Rory Dobner (although we realise it’s not for everyone).
Home Office Storage
When you start to think about how to style your home office, storage is crucial. In an office, you may get away with having everything out on your desk. At home, this is not an option. You need a place for everything. If all your bits and pieces are quite decorative in themselves, bookshelves are a great way of storing them – and can be used to define your space. If it’s just a lot of boring old paperwork, use cupboards and cabinets to keep things out of sight.
Home Office Lighting
Always make the most of any natural light whenever you can. If possible, have your desk at ninety degrees to a window and try not to have heavy curtains that keep light out. When natural light is not enough (and let’s face it, in the UK that’s quite a lot of the time), you need to plan your lighting scheme carefully. As this is your home, you are not going to have bright, stark lighting, but you will need task lighting bright enough for the tasks you do. Layer your lighting with a combination of ceiling pendant lights (or even a chandelier, depending on your décor), floor lamps and table lamps. Then add specific task lighting in the places you need it.
- Contemporary Italian Gold-Plated Triple Suspension Light£1,542.00 – £2,033.00
Style Up your Home Office with a Pin Board
When you have a lot of things that you need to be able to see, a pin board is a great way of keeping things in sight but off your desk. Try to be more creative than just hanging a standard pin board from your local stationery store. Find a striking, vintage picture frame and line it with a striking wallpaper, turn a whole wall into a pin board, or make an oversized, padded panel using a stunning fabric. Be inventive and make your pin board a focal point rather than an afterthought.
Style your Home Office with Accessories
When you style your home office, accessories are your finishing touches. They add personality, warmth, even a touch of glamour. Better still, as this is your home, you can have more than just a photograph on your desk if you want to. Plants are always a favourite and have health benefits too. A vase of cut flowers is always welcome as long as you keep them fresh and change them regularly. Use stylish glassware or your empty Farrow & Ball paint pots to store pens, pencils, etc. Embrace the drinks trolley trend but style it with pen pots and exquisite storage boxes to keep your desk space free. Lovely gold dishes add a glamorous touch. Beautiful boxes can be used to tuck away smaller items out of sight. Vases, lanterns, candles, ornaments. The list is endless and every choice is yours and yours alone. We hope we’ve given you some inspiration on how to style your home office. Let us know how you get on.