Regardless of circumstances surrounding the coronavirus pandemic, it is likely that working from home is to continue to play a part in many of our lives. With this in mind, it’s a good idea to make sure your home working environment is as nice as it possibly can be, both in terms of visual presentability, functionality, and ambience. The construction and perfection of a home office need not cost you the earth, or cost you too much time to put together: the key is to keep things simple and well structured – whether this be through cable organizers, lighting, or printing arrangements. In light of this, we’ve put together some tips on how to get your working environment as beautiful and productive as possible.
How do I set up a beautiful home office?
Your focus should be on filling the area around your desk with some simple but beautiful things. For instance, putting up some pictures on the walls near your desk space: it’s easy to find affordable art prints online, as is ordering some prints of your favourite photos of friends and family. If you are going to be taking a lot of video calls whilst working, you might want to put up your poster on the opposite wall to which you are facing, too. (At the very least, try and arrange it so that your background is as impersonal as possible – you don’t want the ins and outs of your private life displayed to your colleagues).
Houseplants are also a good way of making your home office more pretty, too – just be careful to make sure that they have a tray or plate beneath them in order to catch any spilt water or soil.
How do I make my home office cozy?
Having a good lighting setup is really important. It will stop your eyes straining quite as much and make you more productive, but it will also make your environment a lot more homely, too. As well as a desk light, it’s a good idea to have another non-mains light source available when working, too. Especially if you choose warmer light-bulbs (as opposed to the blinding white lights that often appear in office buildings), multiple light sources should make you feel a lot more in control and reassured by your surroundings, improving your relationship towards your work environment. Whilst it might be tempting to obtain some fairy lights in the name of ambient coziness, make sure they don’t become a distraction. We’d advise against using twinkling or flashing settings, and it’s probably a good idea to position them out of view of your computer webcam, if you’re going to be making a lot of video calls.
Another good way to make your home office feel cozy is to invest in some soft furnishings. Blankets are great for keeping warm before the heating comes on, and cushions can really improve your comfort whilst sat at a desk chair. It’s a good idea to keep these furnishings separate from those on your bed, however: one of the most important aspects of home working is keeping up the dividing lines between work and home, even if these two categories are now, in spatial terms, a lot less distinct.
What do I need in my home office?
As mentioned earlier, the most important part of your home working environment is your desk – this is where you’re going to be spending a lot of time typing, talking, and creating. Whether this be a specially purchased one, or a drawing board held up by trestles, make sure that you can, at least for the duration of the working day, have a space that is yours for working at. This will help your stay focused and calm. Following on from this, you’ll need a chair to sit on, too. Make this chair the most comfortable one possible (and refer back to the earlier advice on soft furnishings).
A suitable I.T setup is obviously the way in which you’ll be getting work done at all. Whilst your work might provide you with the bare technology needed, you also need to consider the paraphernalia that goes with this, too: make sure that you have the right adaptors, chargers and cables to hand in your workspace. The organization of all these bits leads us on to another question…
How do I hide my cables for a home office?
Put simply, you are going to need cable organizers. Because they are so ubiquitous in offices, it’s easy to forget how important they are when setting up a home working environment. They will stop your workspace getting too cluttered, and they will stop you from losing important parts of your equipment, as well as improving your home office’s aesthetics. Depending on how complex your tech setup is, it’s definitely worth investing in some sleeves to keep your wires neatly together, if you haven’t done so already. It would be pretty gutting to go to all the effort over your desk and lighting and posters, only to have to constantly deal with an array of untidy wires every time you are at your desk.