With more people than ever working from home, many homeowners are reconfiguring their home’s layout to create a more permanent, dedicated office space. We’ve asked Charleston-based Tish Mills of Tish Mills Interiors to share her best tips for creating an office space in your home.
How do you approach home office design?
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.
What is key to having a functional home office?
For office spaces located in our home, it’s important for them to be both beautiful and functional. For example, storage solutions that look more like residential furniture than office storage makes for a much more appealing space. Additionally, you should invest in a chair that is supportive yet doesn’t look like you brought it home from an office building. Lastly, you’ll want to find an appropriate mix of lighting that should include ambient, task and natural (if possible).
What works well for a laptop setup?
With a laptop it is possible to work from anywhere, sitting on anything that is comfortable and makes you feel good about your surroundings. I did a lady’s home office that used a settee. If you are working on a laptop for a long time day in and day out, make sure your set up is good for you ergonomically. Some people even prop up in bed to work from home – with an upholstered headboard, good pillows and lighting, you’re good to go.
Having a “command center” workstation in kitchens and mudrooms was the trend for quite a while – is this still the case or is there another trend you are seeing?
Command stations are not trending so much anymore. However, we do receive a lot of requests for charging stations in these areas instead. With the need for homework/homeschooling areas, as well as more adults working from home, the focus is more on converting dining rooms or extra bedrooms into multifunctional areas.
Do you find that many people still want bookshelf storage in their office areas?
With so much information on the internet and laptops being so portable, there isn’t the need for bookcases that there was 5-10 years ago. Now, the emphasis is more on comfort and lighting in people’s home office spaces. Bookcases do add character, but aren’t used in same way as they were in the past.
How do you subtly incorporate technology into the space?
Since almost everything has wireless functionality now, it’s not a problem to incorporate technology. Printers, routers and the sort can be easily concealed in a cabinet or closet.
Home offices are a great selling point when you’re thinking of moving and more buyers are looking for additional space when purchasing a new home. Discuss the best ways to enhance the design of your home office with a trusted designer like Tish Mills and a knowledgeable real estate firm like William Means.