Our Favorite Office Design Ideas for Small Spaces
If there’s more than one person in your household working or learning from home, workspace real estate is probably limited. Not everyone has space in their home for a fully dedicated office, but there are ways to create an environment for focused work. This article covers the best office design ideas for finding the right space, decor, and storage options for a workspace tailored to you.
Why you need a dedicated workspace
A corner suite office with a mahogany desk might be nice. But, simply having a space of your own is all you need to reap the benefits of a dedicated workspace. Whether you’re in a corner suite or a closet, here are some perks that come with having your own personal space.
- Unlock creativity. Schools and organizations have learned that the right workspace can spark creativity . Get those creative juices flowing by setting yourself up with the proper space, tools, and focus.
- Minimize distractions. If you work alongside a television, noisy children, and a squealing vacuum cleaner, it might be difficult to stay in the zone. Establish boundaries—and make your conference calls sound better —by having a set space to work. This helps others recognize and respect your space while holding yourself accountable for your work.
- Help your brain stay focused. Studies indicate that our brains thrive on order . If our workspace is chaotic and disorganized, so is our brain. Having an organized spot to put your brain to work reduces issues like attention residue while increasing productivity.
- A healthier work-life balance. The minute we step outside a workplace or school, our thoughts and priorities change. But that mindset shift can be difficult if our place of work or learning is the same place that we call home. Because physical space affects our mindset , having an established workspace allows us to better transition from work to home time.
The perfect spots for a home office
When space is limited, you need to think outside the box. Imagine your home as a blank canvas. Every nook and cranny has the potential to morph into a creative space. Here are some spots in your home that—with some modifications—can easily function as a workspace.
Under the stairs
Perhaps the biggest waste of space, the area under your stairs is longing for a purpose. Throw in a small table, lamp, and a cozy chair, and you have a space destined for greatness.
A double-duty nightstand
Turn your nightstand into a classy study and never complain about a long commute ever again. However, some may not love the look of an office next to their bed. To help this workspace blend in, incorporate a table, chair, and decor that match the overall design of your bedroom.
Whether you have a spacious walk-in closet or a smaller coat closet, some simple shelving, cheerful decor, and proper lighting can turn this space into a functioning office.
Your hallways are lurking with extra square footage. When space is tight, a hallway may be a nice escape from busier living spaces. If possible, position your workspace near a window or under a light to illuminate your work.
Have you seen those Murphy beds that fold out of the wall? Apply the same concept to your home office with a fold-down desk . Mounted to the wall or a bookshelf, these handy desks are there when you need them—and gone when you don’t.
Cover with a curtain or divider
If walls are lacking in your home, throw up some curtains to section the space and add privacy. Though curtains are relatively easy and cheap to find, there are several unique room dividers that you can make .
Nook or corner space
Some homes are designed with a cutout or nook in the wall — usually for pure aesthetics. Give that awkward, unused space a practical use with a couple alterations. Install deep floating shelves or add an entryway table to create an efficient workspace.
They smell fresh, offer white-noise in a busy home, and may be the perfect fit for your workspace. Also, laundry rooms often feature storage cabinets that can hold all your office essentials.
Portable laptop table
If all else fails, use a c-shaped table to set up a portable space where you can work from the comfort of your couch, bed, or any seat in the house. When you’re not using it for work, use it in your living room or bedroom to hold food, electronics, and all your favorite things.
How to decorate a small workspace
Decor plays a huge role in maintaining the right focus and energy in a small space. Adding your own custom flair is what can turn a nook or hallway into a functioning office. Try some of these office decor ideas for your small workspace.
- Utilize natural light. Natural light adds a wonderful warmth and openness to a space, but it’s also essential for your health. Ward off depression, weight gain, and improve your sleep by soaking up sunshine while you work . If there’s space for a small desk or large floating shelf by a window, make use of it.
- Make the walls pop. Bright, cheerful walls are a must for any space that’s short on natural light. Add fun wallpaper, a touch of paint, or art that you love to your walls and watch your face light up.
- Build a standing desk. Sitting for more than eight hours a day increases your risk of diabetes, depression, dementia, and certain cancers. Standing desks are a great way to fight the health issues related to a sedentary lifestyle — but they also come with a hefty price tag. Save some money without compromising on style by building your own standing desk .
- Surround yourself with inspiration. Your workspace should make you feel good about yourself and the work you’re doing. Fill your space with objects that inspire, uplift, and spark creativity. This could take the form of framed inspirational quotes, photos of your favorite things, sentimental objects, or awards/trophies.
- Freshen up with greenery. There are so many benefits to having plants in your workspace . Not only are plants easy on the eyes, but they also improve air quality, boost productivity, and reduce stress. If your workspace lacks natural light, there are still several indoor, low-light plants to choose from.
Storage tips for small workspaces
People have come up with some seriously clever storage ideas for small spaces . Here are some of our favorite ideas to keep a workspace neat and tidy:
- Hang up headphones. Whether you’re an online student or a remote worker, you probably have a favorite pair of headphones for all those virtual meetings. Keep those well-loved headphones within reach, and safe from tangles, by resting them on a hook near your desk.
- Contain tiny supplies. Thumb tacks, rubber bands, paper clips, and all the other little things that clutter up your desk deserve a designated spot. The good news is that you can use simple containers from your home to keep things organized. Coffee mugs, silicone cupcake liners, used coffee pods, and mason jars are just a few household items ready to hold all your goodies.
- Hide the cables. Give those unsightly cables a home with a cable organizer box . More than just a pretty accessory, this tool keeps power strips and surge protectors out of the way so annoying tangles and cable-tripping is a thing of the past.
- Add a rolling cart. Not only are rolling carts a great way to increase storage space, but they are super portable. If you find that your workspace shifts around the house, consider using a rolling cart to move your essentials where you need them.
- Give your computer a lift. Need more room on your desk? Try using a computer riser to free up space for supplies under the riser. Plus, raising your laptop or monitor offers a more comfortable, ergonomic setup.
- Regularly clean your tech. Dust, dirt, and greasy fingers can cause a lot of harm to your devices—but so can using the wrong cleaning methods. Learn how to properly clean your home office tech to keep everything running smoothly.
Tips for kid-friendly spaces
A child’s attention span is approximately two to three minutes per year of their age—and distractions certainly don’t help those numbers. Kids need a dedicated workspace just as much as adults. When there are multiple kids in the home, giving them their own space can be a challenge. Luckily, we have some solutions:
- Divide the space. Kids need a way to get schoolwork done without distracting each other. Set up a double-sided desk to help kids stay focused and maximize your home’s space. If you only have one desk or table available, create a similar separation with a bookshelf.
- Keep them within earshot. Though kids need an independent space, having an adult close by ensures they remain on task. Placing kids near the areas you occupy the most gives them quick access to your guidance.
- Choose kid-friendly technology. Electronic devices can be just as much of a tool as a crutch. That’s why it’s important to be selective about the technology that you provide children. Look for technology that is versatile, easy for you to monitor, and can withstand active kids. Give kids an interactive learning experience by adding a digital whiteboard to your child’s space .
Your small workspace may feel cluttered and uninspiring at the moment. But, as you apply these simple design ideas, you can turn your home office into a place you love . Vibe’s interactive whiteboard is a smart addition to any home workspace. From remote collaboration to entertainment , Vibe has the tools you need to connect with the world straight from your home.
Vibe offers a collaborative solution combining an interactive digital whiteboard and innovative smart software. Increase engagement and efficiency at your brainstorming sessions, virtual training, and classroom sessions by integrating your favorite applications with video conferencing and an infinite, mess-free writing canvas. Collaborate today with Vibe.
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