words Alexa Wang
More people than ever are working from home due to the coronavirus pandemic sweeping the globe. If you’re one of the many people working remotely, getting your home office right is crucial to maintaining productivity without damaging your own health.
Having the wrong kind of office setup can be detrimental to both your mental and physical health, leading to issues such as back problems and even a lack of focus.
Your office space should feel inviting and comfortable, with all the furnishings you need to do your job. If your home office has been neglected for some time, here are a few ways you can spruce it up.
1. Functional storage
It’s hard to work well in a messy office, so try to find a place for everything to prevent clutter and keep the room tidy. You could put up some shelves above or next to your desk to place your belongings on or even build a floor-to-ceiling storage wall composed of lots of shelves to maximise space usage. Though they aren’t necessarily the most glamorous pieces of furniture, filing cabinets are great for paperwork and there are plenty of stylish options for you to easily install that look sleek and modern. Alternatively, choose stackable decorative boxes or adaptable storage, such as a folding desk that can be neatly put away to make more room when you’re not using the office.
2. Wall decorations
Hanging unique artwork in your office instantly brightens up the room and you can find affordable pieces in thrift shops and flea markets, as well as on websites like Etsy. You can also add personal touches like family photographs, souvenirs from a recent holiday, or even gifts from loved ones. These meaningful keepsakes and pieces of artwork deserve an excellent quality frame to give them more importance while looking beautiful on your walls. Keep in mind that a quality frame can change the look and feel of your home office so ensure the one you pick is a perfect fit. For truly prized pieces of art, we recommend working with a professional framing service to get the best possible quality frame, such as Soho Frames, who offer client consultations to build a bespoke frame for your valuable items.
3. Plants and greenery
Improve the look of your home office by adding some life with plants and greenery. As well as making the room more attractive, plants reduce stress levels, increase productivity, and clean the air around you. If you’re a busy bee, you might not have time to look after certain types so choose low-maintenance plants that thrive in lower light and won’t immediately die without water. Good examples of these include cacti, a sprawling pothos, or a jade plant, to help jazz up your desk. Plants are inexpensive so this is an easy and affordable way to add colour and boost your creativity.
4. Better lighting
The right lights in your home office can keep you alert and focused, while the wrong ones may cause eye strain or headaches. It’s important to bear in mind that natural lighting is far better as it can make your space feel bigger while providing sunlight for plants to grow. As for artificial lighting, avoid certain types of bulbs that are damaging to your eyes, such as cool and bright white fluorescent ones, and incandescent bulbs as these emit the most UV radiation. The best practices for a home office involve layering. Start with ambient lights, such as ceiling and wall fixtures, then add more to areas where you read, write, or use a computer. Finally, incorporate accent lighting to empathise your room’s architectural details, like natural wooden beams. Combining these three lighting types will brighten up your home office in all the right places.
5. Comfortable seating
It’s essential to be comfortable while you work and a good-quality chair will provide all the support you need to get on with your day. Choose a smart-looking piece of furniture to complement the rest of your office, such as an ergonomic chair that supports your body, can easily be adjusted for your height, and has supportive arms. You could even throw in some colourful cushions and throws or a chic ottoman to rest your feet on.