With working from home continuing for now, if not permanently, we thought it was a good time to take stock of our home working environment. In the beginning, everything had a temporary feel about it – we set up camp on the corners of dining tables or dressing tables and prepared to ‘manage for a few weeks’. It’s likely that many of us will be working from home for the foreseeable future, though, so it’s time to create a nicer working environment.
Get a proper chair
Balancing on a dining room, kitchen or even camping chair for long periods of the day will play havoc with your back and general posture longterm. Many of us have avoided investing in ‘proper’ office chairs up until now as they don’t always look particularly good or fit in with our decor. You really do need a chair that’s adjustable in height and has some proper lumbar support, though. Choosing a bright colour or bold design can help it all feel less ‘officey’.
Manhattan small office chair in grey from Lakeland Furniture, was £69.99 now £52.99. This chair has no arms so it’s easier to fit it neatly under a desk when not in use.
Soft pad office chair with short back in grey, £309 from Cult Furniture. A cross between an office chair and an armchair, this seat would work well in a home environment.
Invest in some smart new accessories
We have so much choice available these days that you’re bound to be able to find a colourscheme you like. Getting some new box files and pens in a co-ordinating colour scheme will again help your home office look less commercial and more like part of the home.
Shut it away
If your office is part of a bigger room such as a living room, consider screening it off and making it a separate space. You can use a cheap ‘n’ cheerful solution such as folding screens, or invest in having proper folding doors depending on your space and budget. Being able to close your work space off at the end of the day not only looks much tidier but will help stop work spilling over into leisure hours.
Storage is king!
Pretty much every home interiors feature you’ve ever read extols the virtues of having enough storage, and we completely agree. Adequate storage makes the difference between a calm, tidy environment and a muddled mess. If you don’t already have enough shelves or cupboard space for all your work equipment and paperwork, then this is one area when you can easily make a huge difference. If you’re using a table as a desk then fit a low cupboard or storage boxes underneath, or put up some shelves above the desk. Every night when you’ve finished work do a quick sweep and tidy everything up ready for the evening.
Grey-topped shelf unit, was £175 now £131.25, available from Cox & Cox.
Light up your life
If you’ve been ‘managing’ with an old table lamp or an overhead light in the wrong place, then it’s time to invest in some proper work illumination. A desk lamp gives targeted light and makes it less tiring to work after dark.
Adley desk lamp n French blue, £20 from Iconic Lights.
Nevada desk light in white, was £74 now £63 from Pooky.
Add some greenery
There’s a reason that commercial environments often contain plants – they help clean the air, reduce stress and even boost productivity. Invest in a couple of plants specifically for your home office to help create a more calming atmosphere.
Main image (c) 2021 Pixabay