What is key to having a functional home office these days?

While we are working at home more, we want our spaces to be beautiful and functional.

Beautiful storage that looks more like residential furniture than a true office.

Invest in a good office chair that doesn’t look like you brought it home from the office.  There are some great choices that bridge that gap.  Make sure to find an appropriate mix of lighting that should include ambient, task and natural (if possible).

As more people are using laptops, etc.  does this allow for beautiful tables, etc. as desk surfaces?

Yes.  I did a lady’s office that used a settee. It is possible to work from anywhere and sitting on anything that is comfortable and makes you feel good about your surroundings. If you are doing it for a long time day in and day out make sure it is good for you ergonomically.  Many people even prop up in bed to WFH.  Upholstered headboard, good pillows  and lighting, and you’re good to go.

Have you had any queries to convert spaces?  If so, what have you done?

Yes.  Those “extra” spaces or bedrooms that look good but are never used have been replanned to become a beautiful home offices.

For a while there was  trend to having the Command Central tech center in kitchens/mudrooms?    Is that still true or is there another trend you are seeing?

Not so much anymore.  We do see a lot of requests for charging stations in these areas.  But with the need for homework/homeschooling areas, as well as both spouses working from home, it has been more about turning dining rooms into multifunctional areas.  Or that extra bedroom.

Do you have bookcases, etc. in the space?

As needed, yes.  But with so much being on the internet and laptops being so portable, there isn’t the need that there was 5-10 years ago.  It is more about comfort and lighting wherever someone chooses to work.   Bookcases do add character, but aren’t  used in same way.  They may not incorporate collections from travels, photos, etc.

How do you incorporate technology into the space, so it isn’t obvious?

Almost everything is wireless, so we don’t really have that problem.  Printers, routers and the sort are typically concealed in a cabinet or closet, so they are easily tucked away.  Some homes have a room that has all of house systems from security, heating, sound, etc.

From a sound perspective,   do drapes, furniture and carpeting help absorb ambient noise so there is more clarity?

We look to incorporate those solutions in residential projects as a whole, so for the most part these items are already incorporated into the spaces.

I approach home offices the way I do the remainder of any residential project.  Peacefulness and balance are the point of entry.  Not a lot of clutter.  Comfort is king.  And the things needed for functionality at your fingertips.

Tish Mills Kirk of Tish Mills Interiors, a preferred vendor of The Meridian Real Estate Group, is an award-winning interior designer who has been working with clients in their homes for more than two decades. She believes that it is essential to put together a cohesive plan for your home renovation before you get started that can be carried out by the team of experts you assemble. www.harmoniousliving.net

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