Interiors Experts Reveal Their Best Tips on How to Make the Most of a Small Home Office Space

Over the last few years, working from home, either on a hybrid basis or completely remotely, has gone from a temporary solution to the “new normal” for many working professionals. 

Many home offices started from the kitchen table or even the sofa, but as home working became a more permanent situation, workers want a more dedicated space for their work, whether it be setting up a corner in your bedroom or living room or making use of a spare room. While it’s a much better solution than being hunched over on the kitchen table, many workers are still left short on space. 

Office furniture provider Slouch has partnered with interiors experts Sophie Clemson from The Living House and Laura Price from The Home Organisation Company to reveal their best tips and tricks on how to make the most of a small home office space. 

If space is tight, look up

“When space is tight, look up! It’s amazing how much more we can fit in (without it feeling overcrowded!) when we make good use of the vertical space.” Laura advises, going on to explain that adding shelving or tall bookshelves is one of the best ways to make use of smaller spaces. She suggests storing tech, stationary and books lower down whilst reserving the higher shelves for paperwork and other things you might not need as often. 

To jazz your shelves up a bit, Sophie suggests, “If you have files to store or books to store, install shelving above your desk. Get some patterned boxes or rattan baskets to store your files on the shelves. You can complete the styling of the shelves with accessories such as a trailing plant, vase or candle.”

Have a filing system

Having a filing system isn’t just something for the “actual office” and with home offices typically being a small working space, it’s incredibly easy to start feeling like paperwork is cluttering your space, which can lead to distraction, disorganisation and a drop in productivity. 

Laura suggests, “Separate paperwork you need to sort from paperwork you need to file. And for paperwork you don’t want, make sure you have a paper bin and shredder close by so it doesn’t end up taking over your desk.

Staying organised applies to your drawers too. You might be tempted to throw everything into a drawer and have an ‘out of sight, out of mind’ mindset, which backfires when you need to find something. Laura advises; “Drawer inserts are a great addition to help separate categories and keep some order. And don’t store too much in them – you don’t need 100s of pens! Keep a selection of essential stationary in your desk and either donate the rest or store it out of the way.”

Conceal your wires

Working from home can lead to a lot of wires, and not only can a huge mass of wires look messy and clutter up a small office even more, but can also be a big trip hazard, which can lead to injury to yourself or damage to equipment and furniture. 

Laura advises, “Make sure you keep exposed wires to a minimum to help the space feel calm and clear. Cable ties, a cable box or even a peg board attached to the underside of your desk are all ways to help keep your cables under control and out of sight.”

How to make your home office multifunctional 

Many home workers may find their double office doubling up as a spare bedroom (or vice versa!) so it’s still important to make sure that the space can be kept, or transformed into a peaceful resting place for guests, Look at storage solutions such as filing cabinets and shelves so you can hide anything work related away. 

When it comes to other furniture in the room, Sophie suggests, “When you do have a small space and your home office needs multiple functions, explore sofa beds, as this will keep more of the floor space clear and makes for a great seat if you fancy moving around when working.”

Take your wall colour into consideration

It’s well known that different colours can evoke different emotions, so it’s important to take into consideration your wall and furniture colour when decorating your home office. You want your office to be a calm yet productive space, so Sophie suggests, “Opt for a paint colour that has a calming feeling, such as soft sage greens or warm neutrals. This will create a more relaxing environment for you to work in. Then add in a few plants for greenery.”