Work from Home-Home Office Design Top Tips : According to LiLu
Work From Home-Home Office Design Top Tips -According to LiLu
Home Office Design
You may find yourself in need of a home office quite suddenly or in the case of one client I spoke to this week, three! All of the sudden the home office that did light duty needs to accommodate a new heavy duty workload. In some households, there are two or three adults working from home and kids needing a quiet place to study.
Today, we are sharing some custom office designs and basic advice for a quick home office setup and our designer’s top tips for working from home.
I’ll use each custom design to point out important principles for creating a DIY home office. If you need our help designing a home office please don’t hesitate to give us a call. Here are our helpful tips to anyone who finds themselves asking “How do I set up a productive space for working from home?”
BASIC NEEDS FOR AN OFFICE
When you are planning a work from home-home office design there are some basics you must consider.
For most offices you need a few basics that are easy to set up.
1)A flat surface to work on.
Note that you don’t always need to think about a desk. If you mainly work from your computer, a table or a desk with smaller drawers will suffice. The desk below was from Ballard Design. It has drawers just big enough for some
2) A comfortable desk chair.
I would always opt for an ergonomic model but in a pinch a very comfortable dining chair would work. One tip is to make sure the relationship between the tabletop and the chair allows you to type comfortably without fatiguing your arms and shoulders and avoiding a repetitive stress injury. See the illustration below from Cornell University. If you need help thinking through ergonomics you may want to check out these apps on how to set up a remote work office. This is also an excellent post on proper ergonomics.
3)An organizer for needed supplies.
There are many ways to organize supplies. In this office we designed one side of the office was for study and the other for craft. The study side has a wall organizer for paper, a few daily access files and some pens.
The craft side has bins on shelves and closed cabinets for supplies and equipment, like your printer, that could cause visual clutter and be stress inducing. While these examples are built-in, check out the mood boards below for some free-standing ideas.
4)Spot for a printer/copier
While many can work with few pieces of paper you may need to print a document or copy something so think about where to place this essential piece of equipment. I often use mine to scan a hand drawing and then send to someone via email. You can place it on the top of a low bookcase or inside a cabinet. My top tip for placement is to make sure you have the height to open the copier fully for ease of use.
You don’t need any more stress in your life. And a space that is difficult to use will cause stress.
5)Good task lighting
Being able to see without strain is critical to a good home office design. You want to have a good task lamp on your desk and appropriate lighting in the rest of the room. Too much contrast in lighting levels will cause eye strain and glare.
Check out complete home office project in our BE PRODUCTIVE category on our website.
PLACEMENT FOR A HOME OFFICE
1)A spare room in your home.
You could use a spare bedroom if you have it. The advantage is that a spare bedroom gives you acoustical privacy and at the end of the workday you can shut the door. This means you can end your workday. Having a way to contain your work can help you maintain routine and formally end your workday.
2)`A nook or landing.
We have odd nooks and large landings in our home sometimes that go unused. When you need a work-from-home home office unused space can be an asset. Consider setting up a home office in an area like this. Often these spaces can be useful and if you need to set up more than one home office these spaces can be pressed into use.
The idea is that these spaces aren’t in areas you may want to maintain for relaxing and you won’t have to move your work to eat the way you might if you use the dining table. They are also out of sight when you aren’t working which is a huge advantage.
3)In a bedroom.
The trick to placing a home office inside a bedroom is to make sure your bedroom still maintains a serene feel. If at all possible, place the desk and the storage for it outside of sight of the bed. In the example below the desk is beside the bed so your direct view when lying in bed is not the desk. I have an L-shaped bedroom so my desk is in the leg of the L where I cannot see it.
The advantage of the bedroom is acoustical privacy. The client I mentioned at the beginning of this post needs three offices for people who are on the phone often. We were able to help her think through which three rooms would work best that could be used with the doors closed. With today’s open floor plans however that can be a challenge. Often bedrooms are the only rooms with doors. I’ve also seen some clever DIY uses of curtains to hide the office when sleeping.
CONSIDER OFFICE EXTRAS
Don' forget you need to think of mental health when you are planning a work-from-home home office design. When you can consider adding extras that will give you a lift.
1)A lounge chair
If you have some serious reading or thinking to do, you may not want to do it sitting at your desk. A lounge chair or loveseat can give you the opportunity to step away from your desk and not leave your office. Stepping out of the office could be a nice break (and see my tips below about housework).
Once you’ve got the basics down think about adding some extras. One of my favorites is a live plant that can keep you in touch with nature.
A little beauty will lift your spirits. Consider hanging an inspiring work of art. If you need to shop the house and rearrange a bit, do it. Hang the art where it can be an inspiration to you.
Place some decorative objects within view. You may not have a lot of space but a few items that remind you of a vacation, your family or a happy time in your life are a great way to personalize your space.
We hope this was an informative post. We focus our design work on our client’s intentions for their lives and realize you may not have had the intention of working from home. But now the you are, you may want to be intentional about how you set up your home office to be as stress free as possible. Think about how you want to work at home and what you need from your home office. As always, if we can be of help, please let us know by calling the studio at 612-354-3271. We will be sure to get your call even if we aren't in the studio because our voice mails are delivered to us via email. Or reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org
In the meantime, if you are having trouble settling into a work from home routine that works for you, here are a few more tips from our designers on how to make working from home work: