New ways of working and new living spaces
How to set up a work area in your home
Teleworking and home working are becoming more commonplace, making the concept of the 'living office' a must in a world that requires increasing flexibility and mobility. Here are a few ideas on how to set up an efficient work space in your home.
In the hall
How often have you thought about how much space is wasted in a hallway? So, why not put it to good use? One solution could be to install a space-saving wall-mounted desk or a compact writing desk (also known as an escritoire). At the end of the day, they can both be closed to hide away your work until next time. For a chair, simply take one from your dining room or living room but don't forget to tidy it away once you're done for the day.
Henio, a writing desk for you to work at in perfect tranquillity.
In the living room
This is a good opportunity to sort out the sideboard and replace it with a desk. Keep it simple and opt for a desk that complements your existing decor: a pale wooden desk, a stylish chair, a desk lamp for targeted illumination, attractive storage boxes, etc. You could also add a few wall shelves for your books and files but don't clutter them. If you have a lot of files and documents, opt for drawer units on castors which can be kept under your desk. The key message is to keep things tidy, you don't want work documents and files invading your living space. If you have white walls then opt for a white desk or choose furniture that complements your existing living room furniture. As a back-up solution, use the back of your sofa, which acts as a natural partition, to set up your desk. Choose one with a felt back to help isolate yourself from outside disruptions and to create a conducive working environment.
BECKETT, a chic and stylish desk. Luxurious materials: a padded leather writing surface and oak frame. Very practical: it has two flip-up compartments with leather straps in which to tidy away unsightly computer cables.
In the bedroom
This is a logical solution as, apart from sleeping, we don't tend to spend much time in the bedroom, especially during the day. So why not make better use of this space? Again, make sure you choose furniture that matches your existing decor. Don't hesitate to add a few bookshelves where you can arrange your books; place files and documents in attractive storage boxes. If your bedroom is big enough and your bed has a headboard fixed to the bed frame, move the bed away from the wall and use the space behind to set up your desk i.e. at the head of the bed. Another option is to purchase a desk on wheels, which can be closed like a chest of drawers. Out of sight, out of mind! When done properly, camouflage acts like a half-wall or piece of classic furniture, which does not spoil the overall look of your room.
ST JAMES, with its compact dimensions and sliding shelf, this oak desk is perfect for small spaces.
A minimalist design. It can be used as a console or dressing table in a hall or bedroom.
In a separate study
If you work permanently from home then you'll probably need a separate room in which to work. If your kids have flown the nest, then make use of their old bedroom or consider setting up your office in the attic or basement. Remember that offices - like sheds - can become places of refuge when family life gets a bit much. Obviously, the office equipment will dominate but there's no reason why you can't design this home office to complement the rest of the decor in your house. Choose a real office desk or trestle table with a comfortable chair on castors, add bookshelves for files and books and a plain sofa or a daybed where you can take a rest or read a file between phone calls.
In a cupboard or wardrobe
You could call on the services of a specialised fitter to design a work area in an alcove or recess fitted with a sliding door or you could have a go yourself and turn a cupboard or wardrobe into your new home office. The DIY option is certainly cheaper and gives you the option of personalising your office space. Add shelves, pull-out tables, attractive storage boxes and of course your IT equipment so you can work in the very best conditions. Then when you're done for the day, simply close the doors, forget about work and do something fun.
TANNA was designed by Bethan Gray who was named best designer in 2013 by the British Design Awards. A solid desk in a contemporary design in stained oak. It is extremely practical thanks to its 2 drawers and storage cupboard.
Henio, Un secrétaire pour travailler en toute tranquilité.
Hansel. Designed by the Habitat Design Studio