As high speed wireless internet becomes ubiquitous and many jobs become increasingly digitized, it’s more and more common for people to work from home, either occasionally or even full time. But whether you do a lot of work from home or just a little, the last thing you want is for your house to feel like a cubicle. That means thinking a little outside the box when it comes to choosing office furniture and aiming for a more rustic office design that’s homier, a little rugged, and a lot less sterile than your average office set.
Shop Office desks from Uttermost:
Most office furniture is designed with pure utility in mind. After all, this furniture is meant to help you get your work done, but this focus on efficiency often means that style tends to fall by the wayside. The result? Generic, sterile looking desks and chairs that are fine for the office, but that you probably don’t want to show off in your home. One of my favorite ways to circumvent this problem is to look for office furniture that’s a little rough around the edges, with a rustic, antique style wear-and-tear that gives it much more personality and style.
Shop Office Chairs from Zuo Modern:
Industrial and farmhouse styles are booming right now, and a rustic office design is the perfect addition to this. A desk made of reclaimed wood or covered in a coat of stylishly antiqued paint has a down-to-earth, homey quality that typical office furniture simply doesn’t. These desks aren’t anything fancy, they’re just simple and charming, a little touch that emphasizes the “home” in your home office.
Cottage or farmhouse styled desks are particularly effective because they don’t particularly look like desks. Old fashioned knobby tooled legs, antique drawer pulls, and weather-worn paint in white or a cheery pastel all make for a desk that looks more like a cozy dining table or kitchen work table than anything you’d find in the office, but the right size and height to be right at home with a computer on top and a chair in front, with a little extra storage for office supplies.
Shop Office Desks by Nuevo:
Opting for furniture that has a little style to it doesn’t necessarily mean sacrificing functionality or ergonomics, either. Many cottage style desks come with hideaway keyboard trays disguised to look like regular drawers for desktop users, while more industrial drafting table style desks are ideally suited for laptop users, who really only need a flat surface at a comfortable height to work at. Choosing an office chair that’s comfortable to sit in for long periods of time can be a bit trickier, but as homeowners are increasingly creating office spaces in public areas of the home, more attractive, particularly antique-inspired desk chairs are becoming more common.
As with rustic office desks, you want to look for office chairs that are either made of wood or with a distressed painted finish. But while almost any flat surface will work for setting up a laptop, you want to make sure your chair has some of the common features of more traditional desk chairs. Look for chairs that, at the very least, are adjustable in height and preferably ones that have adjustable arms or backs as well. Because modern ergonomics don’t always go hand in hand with old fashioned designs, chairs that fit the bill can be a bit more challenging (though not impossible) to find, but trust me, your back will thank you.
Choosing rustic office furniture is a great first step towards building a home office that’s relaxed, comfortable, and accessible. But doing so is even more important if your home office is located in a shared area of your home rather than a dedicated room. When you can close the door on your office, the most important design elements are the ones you engage with while working: namely, your desk and your computer, so you can get away with a more comfortable, less attractive chair. But when your workstation is left out in the open, it’s all about what you and your family see when you aren’t working, and that means choosing an elegantly designed office set that will add personality as well as functionality to the room.
What are you looking for in a new office set? Where do you plan to put your home office? Let me know in the comments!