Creating the Perfect Home Office
by Josh Krasinksy
Embarking on a DIY quest is rarely an easy feat. If you've ever experienced the building of a home extension, you'll know that the idea never seems quite as simple as the fruition, although the results are rewarding. Decorating a home is an equally exciting time, perhaps you've moved into a new house that's a blank canvas, or maybe you're having a complete renovation of an old tired room to transform it into a home office.
In fact, with the rapid developments in technology, a lot of people now work from home as the norm, so it only seems natural that the number of home office renovations has increased. Whether it's just a rejuvenating lick of paint or complete refresh from scratch, there's plenty you can do to design a beautiful room that doubles up as a work area. So, what are the crucial aspects to consider when it comes to creating the perfect home office space?
First and foremost, the idea of a home office is so that an employee or self employed individual can work entirely from home, with no need to commute to the office. In this case, it's necessary to consider the practicality of the room, taking into account what you will be doing with the space.
If you're working with limited space, consider installing a purpose built fitted desk rather than free-standing to save on room. Secondly, you need to anticipate the logistics of the room. For example, a desk facing away from the window could eventually feel isolating, so perhaps you could look into the types of blinds that are best for privacy when you need it and instead have the desk window-facing.
It could also be worth installing a sound-proof door, especially if you're operating from a family home where the noise can be distracting.
If you have the room, built-in storage space would be ideal, depending on the type of work you will be doing from home. Having storage will encourage organisation and add to the purpose of the room being a designated office. In addition, you'll need to consider what equipment you will be needing. If you're essentially doing a 9-5 office job from home, then you'll need to make sure your room has decent internet connection with enough room on your desk for your computer and filing systems.
If you're an artist, or working in the creative industry, it's likely you'll be needing a lot of high-value equipment. Whichever device you choose to work from, whether it's a computer, tablet or laptop, you must consider the security aspect your office. Installing a security system for your home is always advised, but in particular an alarm for your home office is a must. Similarly, don't forget to update your contents cover home insurance, as you're now adding value to your home.
Plenty of light
Giving the room a fresh, light and airy feel is essential when it comes to decorating a home office, as you're trying to create a positive work environment. Keep in mind the need for plenty of light and decorate the room with neutral or pastel colours. It's also a good idea to use light coloured woods such as Oak or Birch for the furnishings and fittings, just to keep in theme with the bright atmosphere. If you're working with a room with little to no natural light, then consider either installing a roof window (where applicable) or choosing to go with artificial lighting. Recessed fixtures work well to provide a more subtle, natural lighting illusion, you can then choose where to place them for optimum lighting results.
Recently, conservatories being used as home offices are on the rise. This is due to the fact is it easily accessible extra space, where you may not have the funds to create an extension or your house may not have a spare room to renovate. As well as practical reasons, conservatories have proven to be popular as home offices because of the incredibly amounts of light that can flood the room, creating an encouraging work setting whilst still being isolated enough for concentration.
Keeping in with the theme of inclusion of light, as previously mentioned, it's best to be using neutral or pastel colored decorations. However, it's also a good idea to include a mixture of textures and patterns to bring the room to life. Instead of blinds, you might prefer some sheer drapes or textured curtains, this could work especially if you have larger windows. A patterned, rustic rug is the perfect place to start, as you can then coordinate the rest of the room's theme with the colors in the rug. In addition, having a homely rug gives the room a cozy feel. After all, you're privileged to be working from the comfort of your own home and not a corporate office, so why make it feel that way?
Furthermore, open up the space with some greenery, including low maintenance in-house plants such as succulents and cacti. They look great and add a fresh element to the room, whilst requiring little care and attention. House plants are also proven to assist with lifting your mood and improving air quality, perfect if you're in a cosy office that can feel stuffy at times.
Now you've completed the task of designing the perfect home office, it's time to add a personal element with some finishing touches. Having featured artwork on the wall is a stylish method of adding some character to the room, as well as making the walls look less bare. In addition, it's a helpful idea to perhaps mount a whiteboard on the wall. Not only is it a good way to keep track with your work, but it can also make it feel more like a work orientated environment, improving concentration.
Keeping your home life and work life separate can be challenging, especially if you are working from home every day of the week. However, if you design your home office with the ideal amount of professionalism mixed with comfort, you'll find there is such a thing as the perfect home office.
About the author: Josh Krasinksy is currently studying Interior Design in London, England. With previous experience as a landscape designer and gardener, he considers himself knowledgeable in all things DIY.