The number of people working from home and having their own home office continues to climb. More people are either self-employed or work flexible jobs that allow them to spend some time away from the office. This means that the question of home office furniture is a big one with trends and ideas being important for more people than ever. But what are the trends and approaches dominating the home office furniture market for next year?
Changing face of the desk
As the heart of the home office, it is no surprise that the desk is the thing people put the most thought and effort into choosing. And the desk itself is undergoing a lot of changes as people want to have more than just somewhere to drop their laptop.
The biggest trend is the adaptable desk that allows people to have just what they want from it. Standing desks, adjustable height desks, treadmill workstations and data integrated personal tables are all hot items in terms of desk trends. Standing desks allow people to work on their posture and get away from the sedentary lifestyle while the treadmill desk or standing bike with laptop stand takes the idea much further.
Another trend with the desk is to have it as a visually pleasing feature as well as a practical one. Examples include furniture from reclaimed wood and sculpted desks that look stylish and attractive. After all, the home office doesn’t just have to be a practical space but an aesthetically pleasing one too – you spend a lot of time in it so why not enjoy the surroundings?
Less filing space required
Previously, one of the important but somehow irritating things that your office needed was filing space for all those important documents. But as the world moves to the cloud to store all crucial document, there is less need for those traditional filing cabinets. This leaves two options for the home office designer – repurpose or replace.
The filing cabinet can be repurposed into storage for anything else in the office, such as office supplies or even somewhere to keep all coffee machine and pods when they aren’t in use. This also allows for some retained filing space for those items that still require being physically present.
Alternatively, use the space for something different entirely. A small soft seat is one idea, allowing you to move away from the desk, stretch your legs and contemplate things from a different angle. Classic reclaimed wooden furniture can bring a Nordic, minimalist look to the space that doesn’t require the same amount of room as an ornate sofa or chair.
Bringing nature into the office
We have all worked in those offices that have a sad looking potted plant and call this bringing nature into the office. But one of the big trends for next year goes a step further with the use of natural elements in the workspace. Reclaimed wood furniture from specialists such as hfruk.co.uk is one example while the use of water features is another.
And the concept isn’t just about being more ‘green’ or eco-friendly. Biophilic (love of nature) harnesses something in us that loves the natural world and is buried deep in our psyche. By welcoming this into our home offices, we can offset some of the problems that come from stress-related illnesses made worse by the pressure of urban space.
Instead, biophilic approaches bring direct or indirect elements of nature to the built environment and have had positive effects on people – reduce stress, blood pressure and heart rates while increasing productivity and creativity. People feel better when these concepts are used as part of their office design and big companies like Apple, Amazon and Google are already incorporating thee concepts in their workspaces.
Make the most of space
When you work from home, you remove a part of your home from its normal use and transform it into the office. This might be a bedroom, dining room, conservatory or even part of a room such as the living room. This means that space is at a premium and therefore people are thinking hard about what they need within the home office and what can be omitted.
The big focus here is the use of multi-purpose furniture. People are looking for things that combine workspace with seating or storage, even both. There is a great use of wall space for shelving rather than just for a nice picture. Floor to ceiling storage cabinets is another option with people opting for bright coloured doors or even practical whiteboard style doors to make use of the cabinet for more than storage.
There is also an emphasis on smart office ideas where furniture is more than just somewhere to sit, stand or place things. Storage cabinets that also charge devices are one example – you can even get bedside tables that charge your phone during the night. This kind of tech furniture is also becoming important in the home office when space is at a premium and everything needs to do more than one task.
If you have a bit more space for your home office, such as an extension, conservatory or garden room, then the trend is to follow the big companies and have work zones. This is particularly important if you collaborate with anyone or have visitors coming to your home office. Rather than trying to have closed off areas for different purposes, the trend is simply to have zones. Even the use of portable screens or shelving units on wheels means you can transform an open plan space into one with cubicles if required.
The great thing about the home office is that you don’t have to worry about anyone but yourself in its design, furniture and layout. You can choose what works best for you from a big, ornate desk to a treadmill with a laptop stand. The home office is your office and you can furnish it exactly as you like to best suit your needs.