How to create a multifunctional workspace in your home
Want to create a dedicated workspace, but don't have enough room to create a traditional home office? In this article, Nick Acaster, from Rugs Direct, shares his tips for designing a stylish and productive home working space, without needing to take up an entire room.
Could the days of long commutes, packed trains, and bustling
offices be gone for good? While it might have been hard to imagine just seven months
ago, the world is now a very different place to the one we knew before
COVID-19. We've become a nation of home workers — and it looks as though this
new way of working and living could be here to stay, at least for a few more
months. So, if you're fed up of balancing your laptop on your knee on the sofa,
or working from the kitchen table, why not create a dedicated workspace?
Having a special place to focus on your work can make it easier to get into that productive mindset, and it can help you keep your personal time and work time separate when you’re not on the clock. You don't necessarily need to convert an entire room to do this, either — you can create a functional workspace in almost any nook or cranny. Here, I'll explain how to design a versatile, multifunctional work area, without taking up too much space.
Find a way to separate it from your living space
If your mini home office is going to be part of a larger
existing room, like a spare bedroom or living room, to try to make it feel
distinct from the surrounding furnishings. Placing an area rug under your
office furniture can be a great way to create a designated "office
zone" that feels separate to the rest of the room, and it can add style
and comfort to your new work area, too. Screens or free-standing shelves can
also be used to help divide your room into clearly defined zones.
If you have an alcove or cupboard in your room, you could even consider placing your desk and computer in there. This allows you to simply close the door and shut out your work stresses on an evening. Plus, it will immediately put any work clutter, like papers or computer cables, out of sight and out of mind, without the need to tidy up
Choose some compact yet functional office furniture
Once you've decided where you're going to position your new
workspace, you'll need to choose a desk and chair. You'll likely want to pick
quite a compact desk, as this will ensure that it doesn't take over the room.
In very small spaces, you could even go for a fold-down desk that can be stowed
against a wall when not in use, maximising the available space. A style that includes
built-in storage, like drawers and cabinets, can help you to make use of the
space you have effectively.
If you're going to want to move your desk from time to time — to make space for exercise, or to pull out a sofa bed, for example — then you could consider getting a desk that is at least partially mounted on castors, so you can easily wheel it out of the way.
Install proper lighting
Lighting plays an important role in regulating our mood and energy levels, which can have a direct impact on how productive we feel. So, to set yourself up for success, you'll want to make sure your new workspace is brightly lit. Natural daylight is best for this, so placing your new desk area near a window will ensure you get lots of mood-boosting light during working hours. If this isn't possible, you'll want to install some bright overhead lights, perhaps along with a desk lamp for more focused lighting.
Home working could be the "new normal"
for a while yet, so it's certainly worth creating a space where you can really
focus on your work. Try taking these tips on board to design a mini home
working space that's both stylish and functional