Many of us now work from home, myself included, and getting the right workspace is key to being focused and productive. Here are a few tips on how to approach the design of your space.
Whether your home office is a corner of your kitchen or dining room,
You can find bureaux like below … auction houses and second hand sale rooms are full of wonderful pieces ready to paint to match your scheme….
A practical converted walk in cupboard,
Or below, concealed behind luxurious bespoke cabinets – a bar too!!
Setting aside space to work and keep things in order is easy to do with some planning. If you are using a section of a room at home, it is important to be able to shut it away when you are not working and large cupboards are a good way to do this.
Whatever you are planning, collect a few inspirational images from Pinterest, Houzz.com or magazines if you find something interesting. List what you need from the space and look for inspirational images and get ideas from Pinterest or blogs.
I analysed how I will use the space: as a working interior designer I will need areas to:
- research ideas – computer/reference library
- store/display samples
- work on technical drawings
- make up sample/mood boards
- welcome clients to present plans/sample boards and offer a refreshments
- admin area for back office work
Above, kitchen furniture is used as storage islands, I like the way the thin profile ledges in wood are used to display sample boards to show the designer’s work.
Above, cork boards are more of a work in progress way to develop a sample board and having the plans in view. Wire baskets under the counters are used for samples.
I think these drawers above are from IKEA and great for storing A3 plans and boards. They have had wheels to so can be wheeled to where you are working and tucked away when not in use.
Below, very successful designers need a lot of space, for many staff to work side by side on many projects. This studio uses trays to organise samples.
Below I have spotted those IKEA drawers again! Also a similar thin profile ledge to store/display stone samples.
The above spaces are too cluttered for me so I need to make sure I have plenty of storage! They are however looking like a wonderful treasure trove!
My first priority in design is always light. A working space for design or anything else, needs good natural light to see the samples in daylight as well as electric. I have a SE facing space which is semi basement opening onto a garden. It will be bright in the morning and afternoon in winter and in the mornings in the summer. As my space is irregularly shaped I want to blank out the walls as much as possible so going for light walls will blur the edges. (very dark also does this job but I need to see!) The palette will have warm elements to balance the cool winter light and have a cool tone to calm down the summer sun. I need a calm space to be the backdrop for all the colour, pattern and texture I will be working with.
When designing your project, think of the adjectives you want your space to reflect. I want my studio to be: Creative, Modern, Natural, and Light
So now to find images that match those feelings….
Creative: This is a place where inspiration has to flow, having unique ideas and solving problems is the key to good interior design. A unique space will inspire you to be creative. Can be creative layout, materials or a feeling that good work is taking place.
Modern: I want the backbone of the studio to be modern and efficient, there will be samples and paperwork around and organisation is key to being efficient. Good storage and flow is essential.
Natural: This is so I will feel relaxed, so using natural materials will give a feeling of wellbeing a good balance for the many samples and paperwork on the go.
Light: The basis of all we see, essential for working and feeling good. Can also be a feeling of lightness, nothing heavy.
Then choose between at your collected images, not repeating a theme, edit 3-5 images which blend together to cover all your adjectives. You now have a concept board to guide you through the selection process for colour, materials, and furniture.
So this is design stage one – I have a board I can use when I come to choose colours and materials. This is my visual guide to design the space, it is the “feeling” of what I am putting together. There is so much choice out there and my little concept board together with some ideas I have found in the images posted will help me to make the decisions easily.
I am looking forward to showing you in future posts, the next stages, i.e. sample board showing the materials and some furniture I will use, I will show you how I will plan the space to give me areas to do everything on my list above.
I hope this has inspired you to start designing you own home office space.
Thanks for reading!