There’s no doubt that more and more of us are working from home. In 2014, it was reported that 13.9% of all workers in the UK – that’s 2.4 million of us, the highest it’s ever been – now either work from home as self-employed or use our homes as a base, outside of the standard office. And while the nation’s businesses may be embracing the positive aspects of using our homes for a more balanced employee, our homes have not suddenly grown larger as a result.
This means that while a small percentage of us may have the space of an additional room to use as a home office, many more are attempting to carve out a space within their existing footprint to create an area they can concentrate, to get on with the practicalities of their day. This may be why trend reports are now saying that 2016 is the ‘Year of of the Desk’. A strange observation perhaps (when did desks suddenly go out of fashion?) but there’s little wonder why. Working from the family dining table or the living room sofa just isn’t as conducive or practical in the long term.
Today I wanted to talk about ways you can find the space to create a small home office. In practical terms, the only things that are truly needed are a surface and a chair and perhaps some decent lighting but why not make your home office really work for you? Why not take advantage of all the opportunities a home office provides outside of the grubby grey cubicle farm you left behind?
If you have an older property, it may be possible to create a small working area within the alcoves of your fireplace. Away from the temptations of easily switching on the television, it can be the perfect spot to install some custom shelving to keep things organised.
You might also consider carving out a nook between built in storage. The additional storage will keep everything hidden away until it’s required and including sockets for lighting and technology will mean your workspace is a light, bright, well-organised area.
If you have a loft, then this might be the perfect spot to include a home office. Installing windows in the roof will mean the area is well-lit and it’s practical too. Under the eaves, you don’t need the head space so it makes good use of an otherwise awkward area. At the end of the day, it’s much easier to come down to the main areas of the home and not be tempted to get stuck back into whatever you were working on during the day.
Any blank wall can be utilised for desk space. Here, a living room gets an injection of style from a vintage desk and bold artwork. Incorporating your office area into a main living area is more seamless when the style of desk and chair and the accessories around it blend well with the existing decor.
If you have a quiet bedroom, creating a small desk area in place of bedside tables may be another solution to carving out some work space. A comfy chair and a glass topped desk create a glamorous working spot above, making it less tempting to sneak under the duvet for a midday snooze!
Think outside the box when considering your desk placement! Can a large closet be better utilised as desk space? The doors can easily hide the space at the end of your working day, making it seamless to the rest of your home.
The truth is, most of will be able to find somewhere to carve out a little space for working from home. It may take a little creativity and we may need to do some furniture-shifting to create the space, but with the right mindset, your home office may be well within your reach, no matter how small your home.
- carving out a workspace: Fanny Staaf
- BW-Day-in-the-Life-11-of-64: Bird is the Word
- small office built into alcoves: Home Adore
- desk nook: Jeremy Bittermann for the NY Times
- home office in loft space: The Glitter Guide
- desk in living room: SF Girl By Bay
- desk as bedside table: The Style Saloniste
- desk in closet: Houzz
- office in alcove space: Jillian Harris