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19 Ways to Create a Chic and Functional Study Room

With remote classes and homeschooling here to stay, it’s all the more reason to dedicate time and space to designing a study room of some form for the kids! Whether they’re just starting elementary school or teenagers preparing for college, creating a designated study space will help them (and you!) stay focused on the tasks at hand.

There’s no shortage of inspiring study room ideas, but it ultimately comes down to what’s right for you. Do you need a multipurpose solution that maximizes your living and dining spaces because you don’t have an extra full room for a home office or study? Or maybe you’re looking for clever small study room ideas that make the most of your family-friendly apartment.

No matter how big or small your space, we’ve got you covered with our stylish and functional study room ideas. Read on to get our tips and start designing your own creative study space.

Blue library style study room office

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Create A Library Work Space

If you’re working with an existing home office or shared workspace, turn it into a full on study with a library-like look and feel that everyone in the family can appreciate.

Bring in a pair of comfy armchairs across from your work area for sitting and for taking breaks from work. It’s a simple and stylish way to turn a home office into a space where you can keep an eye on your kids and their schoolwork while you do your own work during the day.

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Carve Out A Study Corner

One of the easiest ways to set up a functional and private workstation for your little ones is to build out a study nook.

Pull in a corner table or line up two desks into an L-shape arrangement. Pair it with a cushioned armchair or an adjustable seat that makes it comfy for the kids to sit in, log into class, and stay focused for hours. This set up also gives them a spacious work area to do everything from homework to crafts.

green and neutral office study room

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Add Task Lighting

You can create a stylish study space for the kids without devoting an entire room to the job. Turn your dining table or any surface into a study area by simply adding task lighting or a desk lamp.

With this approach, it creates a study spot where they can easily leave and pick up their work at different times throughout the day. Try adding a task light or lamp to one end of the dining table or on a console to make the most of these surfaces. If you’re working with a small table, you can’t go wrong with a classic small desk lamp.

study room area in a bedroom

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Opt For A Wall-Mounted Desk

When it comes to small-space study room ideas, a wall-mounted desk makes for a compact and convenient homework station in your kids’ bedroom.

With a wall-mounted desk, it not only saves floor space but it also creates a visually clean look in the space. It’s the perfect minimalist solution for a small kids room, or even a narrow hallway if you’re after a multifunctional working area that everyone in the family can use.

built-in storage office study room with black walls

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Go Big With Built-In Storage

For those with a home office or study that has built-ins, make the most of them by storing practical study materials, such as books, office supplies, and school materials for your kids.

Think of your built-ins as a shared storage space that everyone can access at any time. Additionally, treat your built-ins as a display case for decor and other favorite objects to give it a personal touch. If you’re looking for study room ideas that are a tad more traditional and formal, built-ins are a bold approach that will check those boxes for you.

study room lounge with dark blue walls

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Think Study Lounge

In a larger space, consider a study room design that conjures up the look and feel of a formal library-like lounge with an oversize sofa and warm, comfy accent pieces.

Start by anchoring your room with a plush sofa that makes for a perfect reading seat, then round it out with a side table and library-inspired art and decor on your walls and shelves. This is a great approach to a study space for you and your kids if you like to spend time as a family reading or doing creative activities in the same room.

Study room nook in a living room

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Zone Out A Study Nook

A stylish way to create an instant study area for kids is to partition off your living space into two different zones—one with a seating area for relaxing, and another with a desk for work.

This is one of the most common study room ideas for homes that need to maximize their living room usage. Try using an open bookcase as a room divider that offers functional storage, or you can also try using a folding screen or a rug to delineate your living space from your study spot.

shared office study room with two desks

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Create Distinct Study Spaces

In the same vein as dividing up your living space, consider turning an entire corner or area along a wall into a workspace for two with a partitioned setup of desks.

With this approach, you’ll be able to create two distinct office spaces that can be used by you and your kids. Set it up with matching desks, lamps, and wall decor, and use an open bookshelf divider as a shared storage unit. It all adds up to a perfect dedicated study corner for two kids. For more unique workspace setups, check out our tips for homeschool layout ideas.

 

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Design An Open Work Area

One of our favorite study room ideas, this double desk setup provides a collaborative workspace that can be used by everyone in the home.

By arranging two desks side-by-side in a hallway or open living corner, you have an instant office space that can easily double as a homework station for your kids. Stylish as well as practical, this approach provides a surface for your kids to spread out there homework, or for you to get some quick work done on your laptop at night.

breakfast nook study room

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Consider A Moveable Office

Rather than dedicating a fixed space for work and studying, try taking a more versatile makeshift approach with a rolling cart that’s stocked with all your office and school supplies.

By filling a serving or bart cart with notebooks, stationery, crafts and extra office supplies, you turn any dining or living space into a study spot as needed. And when not in use, you can easily tuck the cart away in a corner or along the wall to save space.

cloffice study room

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Repurpose A Closet For Work

Transforming a closet into a focused workspace is probably one of the best small study room ideas for any kids room. Not only does it save space in a room, it also provides a quiet, focused area for doing schoolwork.

A closet has just enough space to fit a desk and chair, and can make for the perfect little work nook in a kids bedroom. Think of it as decorating a tiny workspace, with a desk lamp, wall art, and floating shelves for storage. For more stylish small office decorating ideas, check out our tips for dorm room decor.

dining room and study area

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Maximize Your Dining Space

For families looking for low-lift study room ideas that don’t involve redecorating a room or buying new furniture, turning the dining room into a multipurpose space for work and homeschooling is probably the most practical approach.

With any long dining table, you can turn it into a makeshift study zone and work area for kids to attend remote classes and do homework during the day. You can also do your own work at the other end of the table. At the end of the day, simply clear off the table for meals and store away books, laptops, and other work supplies in a nearby storage piece, like a sideboard or a buffet.

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Build Out A Live-Work Space

More than any room in the home, your living space is often the best place for integrating an office and study zone.

Consider devoting an entire wall at one end of your living space for a work area for you and your kids. See if you can tuck your work zone into a corner or off to the side of your living room if you’re pressed for space. Either way, this is a great way to create a quiet study area that blends seamlessly into your living space and home.

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Put Your Bedside To Work

You can file this one under foolproof study room ideas that work in any kids bedroom design. By arranging a desk next to a bed, it doubles as study space as well as a nightstand. And the best part is that this setup can work wonderfully in smaller bedrooms or in kids rooms that are pressed for space. Just make sure that the height of your desk isn’t too tall alongside the bed. Need helping finding a desk that’s just right? Check out these desk ideas for kids.

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Play Up A Windowside Office

Transform any window space into a chic home office corner by adding a desk. The empty space in front of any window always makes for a good spot for work as it provides great natural light.

Round out your window workspace with simple study room decorations, like a desk lamp and a low tiered shelf. By minimizing furnishings and decor, it will help keep your office feeling curated, open, and airy.

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Use Every Inch In Small Spaces

The truth is, a study space can be made almost anywhere, even in the most compact rooms. The key to small study room ideas that work is to utilize every aspect of a space.

Here, the seating area under the loft bed in this kids room is both a space for relaxing as well as a study zone for doing homework. The comfy seating, floor cushion, and low table, which provides a spot to set books and laptops, all add up to a cozy and focused study zone.

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Consider A Guest Room Study

If you have an extra guest bedroom, consider adding a workspace in it for an elevated study room design.

This is a chic solution to a home office or study space if you’re tight on space in the rest of your home. You can dedicate half of your guest bedroom to being your study by adding a desk, table lamp, and a comfy chair, and it can function as your main workspace when you’re not hosting overnight guests.

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Make For A Corner Office Look

In a large open living space, you can also float a desk at one end of the room to create a dedicated workspace that has the look of an executive study room design.

With this approach, it’s all about creating an open office that feels like a formal room within your living space. Round out your floating desk setup with a bookcase and an armchair to further play up the executive office feel, and ground it with a bold rug to set it apart as its own space.

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Section Out A Workspace For Two

What often sets apart great study room ideas is that they can accommodate more than one person.

In this workspace, a large desk is set up with a pair of chairs, making it the perfect office and kids study zone for two. It’s a chic and practical approach to a work area that’s designed for collaborating, whether it’s helping your child with homework or giving your kids a workspace where they can work together.

Explore more home office design ideas!

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Meet The Brand: Crate & Barrel and Crate & Kids

We’ve worked hard to grow our digital catalog with amazing Modsy brands—from well-known retailers to budding designers to cool under-the-radar bands. All to say, our catalog is ever-evolving. And you can get a peek into some of our favorite partners in our Modsy Brand Spotlights where we feature some of the stylish and affordable pieces you’ll find in your 3D designs.

Here, as a follow-up to our CB2 spotlight, we’re featuring the rest of the fam: Crate & Barrel and Crate & Kids!

modern black and white living room

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Meet The Brands: Crate & Barrel and Crate & Kids

Crate & Barrel was founded more than 55 years ago by a husband-and-wife duo. The couple, inspired by their European honeymoon, wanted to bring simple and beautiful housewares to the U.S. Eventually, they opened their first brick-and-mortar store. It’s where the name Crate & Barrel came from: Crates were used as display cases. The brand also quickly set itself apart as a pioneer in ‘experiential retail’ with stylized vignettes inside its stores.

Today, Crate & Barrel has become a household design retail name. And in 2001, the brand acquired the kids home decor company, Land of Nod, and rebranded it into Crate & Kids.

Crate and Barrel dining room table and chairs with a sleek modern look

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What They’re Known For

Within the Crate family, each brand offers a unique style of furnishings for the home. Crate & Barrel offers modern-leaning transitional furnishings that are perfect for the family home; cb2 has sleek contemporary designs tailored to the urbanites, apartment living, and young families; and Crate & Kids features kids furnishings and decor across a range of styles and price points.

If you’re looking for tailored modern designs, Crate & Barrel is a popular one-stop shop for today’s home lovers. You’ll find cool furniture pieces for indoors and outdoors, such as modular Crate & Barrel bar stools and outdoor furniture, as well as a wide selection of polished tableware, like Crate & Barrel bowls and linens. More recently, Crate & Barrel have launched incredible collaborations with well-known celebrities and designers to create on-trend collections that have been highly sought-after.

Looking for stylish kids furnishings that are made to last? You’ll find an equally diverse mix of cool and colorful designs from Crate & Kids. Some of our favorite finds include Crate & Kids rugs and bedding, along with the brand’s practical and child-friendly modular Crate & Kids bookshelf designs, which are always thoughtfully designed for nurseries and kids rooms. You can find more of our Crate & Kids must-haves in our kids room furniture checklist.

Crate and Barrel kids bedroom with Jenny Lind bed

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Why We Love Them

Crate & Barrel has remained a leading design brand for its sustainable practices over the years. Their stores are committed to sustainable packaging and sourcing, and their designs are Gold LEED certified.

Additionally, across Crate & Barrel, cb2, and Crate & Kids, the company collaborates with over hundreds of artists and designers from all over the world to ensure top-quality, handcrafted products that are built to last while supporting creatives. It’s also the reason they are able to offer a diverse mix of styles that are universally appealing and perfect for home-lovers who have more transitional (in-between) tastes.

Most of all, Crate & Barrel and Crate & Kids offer a sophisticated selection that comes at mid-range price points that are hard to beat. It’s one of our favorite affordable go-to retailers given the great quality and style you get for the price you pay!

Shop Our Stylists’ Picks From Crate & Barrel & Crate & Kids!

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My Modsy Story: Transforming an Awkward Room into a Multi-Purpose Dream Space

When Britt moved her family and business across the country, she was determined to make the transition as smooth as possible. But an awkward shared living room/office area presented a major challenge.

Modsy customer headshot

Homeowner: Britt Rainer

Spaces: Living Room-Office

My Style: Contemporary Collector

Modsy customer home before design

Modsy customer home before design

The Backstory

My husband and I recently moved from Portland, Ore. to Scottsdale, Ariz. We’re co-owners of a children’s clothing brand called Bunny Knots and I work from home—which meant I had to get our combined living room/home office designed right away. I needed to be able to shift back to focusing on our company after the move while also creating a cozy space for us to settle into our new home.

“I needed to be able to shift back to focusing on our company after the move while also creating a cozy space for us to settle into our new home. “

Customer design living room in contemporary style

The Design Dilemma

We actually have other living areas in the house, but because this room is right off our entryway and would double as my workspace, I wanted to make sure we found a good layout and design for it right away. Unfortunately, the room is long and narrow and none of our furniture worked for the space, so we needed to design it from scratch. But I was having a hard time finding a layout that would work for the room and make it function as a place where I could focus during the day and relax with my husband and kids at night. No matter what I did, the room still felt small, dark, and unusable—I really didn’t think any layout was going to work!

“I was having a hard time finding a layout that would work for the room and make it function as a place where I could focus during the day and relax with my husband and kids at night.”

Customer design home office in contemporary style

The Modsy Moment

I freaked out—in a good way—the instant I saw our room in 3D. It was like my designer took every wish I’d had for the room and brought each one to life. I was so impressed by the different “zones” she created for space—a stunning office area that was distinguished from the rest of the space by a dark accent wall and a beautiful conversation area that fit perfectly in the narrow room and looked so cozy. She tied the two areas together with furniture styles and a neutral color palette that feels so at home in the Arizona desert.

“I freaked out—in a good way—the instant I saw our room in 3D. It was like my designer took every wish I’d had for the room and brought each one to life.”

Open living room with large white CB2 sofa

The Real Results

Now that our Modsy project is complete, this oddly shaped room that once felt so dark is now the bright heart of our home! I felt immense relief when we got our designs, and now I feel so much excitement when I’m in this room. It’s a space my family loves to relax in and where I feel inspired to work. It’s a feeling of life-changing contentedness that we can all enjoy this space together. I’m just so grateful we got it from using Modsy!

“Now that our Modsy project is complete, this oddly shaped room that once felt so dark is now the bright heart of our home!”

Open living room with large white CB2 sofa

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Cloffice Design Tips: The Ultimate Home Office Hack You Need to Know

Many of us are still working from home in 2021, and we’re seeing people get creative to make the most of their spaces. Living rooms are tripling as playrooms, home gyms, and lounge spaces, while dining rooms are working overtime as a place for meals, homeschooling, and the family HQ.

With so much functionality packed into the home, any space you can find has become fair game for a home office. Meet the “cloffice.” If you haven’t heard of this home office trend, the name says it all—it’s creating an office in a closet!

You’ve probably seen closet offices popping up all over social media. It’s a smart way to pack function into a small space without taking up precious space needed for other duties—which is the case in homes where every room has to serve multiple functions. Not to mention, a closet office also gives you privacy during work hours.

Whether it’s a walk-in closet, one in your hallway, or a small spare room that’s just large enough to do work in, they can all be transformed into a stylish closet office design! Here, we’ve rounded up our best design ideas for designing your own “cloffice.” Find out more below!

Can’t free up any closet space? Get our tips for How to Create a Home Office With No Spare Room, and find the right pieces for your space with our Home Office Checklist!

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1. The Floating Cloffice

Add a floating desk with built-in drawers and shelves in a closet for an office nook that maximizes space and offers seamless storage. The desk attached to the wall eliminates the need for legs, and you can keep books and office supplies organized in bins on the open shelves above.

The result is a dedicated closet office that’s compact and super functional for a full day of work. For a pop of personality, accent the cloffice with fun wallpaper and art. Also, check out our work from home design tips for more decor ideas.

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2. The Half Walk-in Closet Office

Walk-in closets are typically long and narrow, so you can line one side with office furniture to maximize half of the space as a cloffice.

Pull in a writing desk that’s just the right size to give your closet office space a visually open look and feel. Flank the desk with ladder-style bookcases to add some open and hidden storage while utilizing vertical space. Think of this as if you’re designing a small apartment home office.

Top off your cloffice with some bright colors, whether it’s a few vibrant plants that thrive in low light or a colorful rug. If you have a window, use sheers to let natural light brighten your space!

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3. The Full Walk-in Cloffice

If you can take advantage of your entire walk-in closet, you can turn your closet into an office with the simple addition of a desk and shelves.

For a closet office, there are a few types of desks that work best. In this cloffice, the acrylic desk provides a functional workspace but has a slender and minimalist silhouette that keeps the small space open and airy. The floating shelves are hung high to provide vertical storage, which adds to the openness of the room, while baskets and boxes help keep small clutter at bay.

For even more function, a versatile storage ottoman is perfect for full walk-in closet offices since they can be used as a seat, footrest, and storage that’s easy to move around.

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4. The Hallway Cloffice

A stylish cloffice idea is turning a hallway closet into an office nook. It can make for a super practical and pretty workspace with the right pieces.

A tall ladder desk is best for a small space like a hallway closet office. It offers vertical storage and a work surface all in one piece. It also leaves enough room to add a small file cabinet on wheels that give you extra concealed storage. Add some colorful books and display art and cool decor on the shelves. It will help give the space personality and make it feel like a real room.

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5. The Living Room Cloffice

You can instantly transform any living room alcove or closet into an office nook with a desk and chair. But to really make a closet office feel like a functional workspace, add lighting!

Since closets don’t usually have built-in lighting, adding some in your closet office is one way to set it apart as a dedicated work zone. Try working in a desk lamp, pendant, or even plug-in sconce for a practical, well-lit cloffice.

Office in a closet not an option in your living room? Get more ideas for How to Create a Home Office in Your Living Room and creating a dining room office design.

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6. The Kids Cloffice

If you have kids, a cloffice can be a great workspace design for them. It provides an enclosed space for them to do work without needing to build out a whole separate room.

With a kids cloffice, start with a desk and floating shelves, then let your kid add their own fun artwork and colorful accents. This will help make them feel like the cloffice is truly a space that’s theirs. For added comfort and color, pull in a rug to complement your desk choice. It also makes for an easy way to ‘zone’ the closet office.

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7. The Versatile Cloffice

If you don’t need much storage and prefer not to hang shelves on the wall, opt for a compact and moveable desk with storage drawers in your closet office.

Because a cloffice is all about maximizing a small space, you can make it as flexible as you need it to be. Adding a writing desk and a stool next to it can be a casual way to create a workspace that has tons of storage without it being a “fixed” closet office.

If you’re building out a more permanent home office but still need a workspace for right now, this is a great solve that doesn’t require built-ins and tons of investment pieces.

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8. The Bedroom Cloffice

Designing a cloffice in a bedroom is probably the most practical and common, especially because it can work perfectly in small apartments and homes. This is also an easy way to add an office for everyday use in a guest room.

A closet office that is open in your bedroom is a great solution for those who have two closets and dressers for clothing storage. Bring in office furniture that goes with the rest of your bedroom pieces—like the chaise lounge and C-table here—and add a rug that extends under the desk to make your closet office feel like part of the room. This will give your space an overall cohesive look.

If you’re not sure where to start, get our easy tips on How to Design a Bedroom Home Office!

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My Modsy Story: How my son and I designed a home together

Ready for a new phase of life, a father found an empty house where he and his son could start from scratch. The only problem was finding time to design the new space with his busy work schedule.

Actual Modsy Customer

before photo of customer dining room

The Backstory

“I wanted a fresh start for my 12-year-old son and myself, so I found a new house here in San Francisco. The house is over 200 years old, and before we moved in it was decorated with very traditional decor. My personal aesthetic is much more modern, so I knew we’d start over with a blank slate. But with every room completely empty, I needed to get the space decorated—and fast—so my son and I could feel comfortable here.”

“I wanted a fresh start for my 12-year-old son and myself, so I found a new house here in San Francisco.”

living and dining room combo space with grey sectional sofa

The Design Dilemma

“I know my personal style and I actually know quite a bit about design, as it factors heavily into my work. Having previously worked closely with traditional interior design services in both a personal and professional capacity, I knew plenty of people who could help me tackle my home design project. I could even have done a good job on my own, but I’m so busy that I wanted to outsource the work—and I knew I wanted it done faster than a traditional design service could offer. I’d heard about online interior design and decided I would give San Francsico based interior design company Modsy a try.”

“I knew I wanted it done faster than a traditional design service could offer.”

Actual Modsy Customer

Designer Insight:

“In our consult call, I could immediately tell that the client had style and vision but lacked the time he needed to bring his space together. I was determined to give him a well-thought-out design for each room within his tight timeframe.” –Janna, Modsy designer

king bed in bedroom with blue walls

Actual Modsy Customer

The Modsy Moment

“When I had my consult call with my Modsy designer, Janna, I told her I was very busy and I just wanted her to take my input I had for the space and to run with it. The results absolutely hit the bullseye!”

blue contemporary bedroom with twin beds

industrial modern wood dresser with mirror above it

“What was even more impressive than how well Janna nailed my design aesthetic, was the way Modsy’s 3D designs really took my son and me along for the ride. My son was a really big part of the move, he helped me choose the house and even took part in the lease negotiations (he’s 12!), so it only made sense that he should have a say in the design process, too. He loved seeing his room go from an empty space to a 3D design to actually seeing the room come together IRL. Not only was the process fun for him but it also gave him a sense of autonomy and helped him grow a little.”

“My son loved seeing his room go from an empty space to a 3D design to actually seeing the room come together IRL.”

green industrial office with black velvet chair

green industrial office with black velvet chair

Designer Insight:

“As a Luxe designer at Modsy, one of the highlights of my job is revealing my clients’ designs during our Design Reveal video call. It was a special treat getting to present designs to this client; he was just so pleased to see how quickly his designs came together and was shocked by how little he had to do. And he was really excited for his son’s room, too, which was sweet!” –Janna, Modsy designer

dining room with grey walls and four blue chairs around glass dining table

Actual Modsy Customer

The Real Results

“Before using Modsy, the space was completely empty, without even a stitch of furniture. Now each room is fully furnished with beautiful furniture and paint selections that perfectly capture my design sensibilities. Janna selected colors and decor for every room that is appropriate for whatever I’m doing. Seriously, every space works for entertaining (when it’s safe to entertain again), relaxing, or even working from home on a busy day. Plus, my son really likes his bedroom design. His mind was blown and so was mine—but in the best possible way.”

“Before using Modsy, the space was completely empty, without even a stitch of furniture. Now each room is fully furnished with beautiful furniture and paint selections that perfectly capture my design sensibilities.”

Actual Modsy Customer

customer entryway with black cabinet and lamp

Designer Insight:

“For this project, I knew it was key to imbue each room with a bit of fun, along with items that felt personal. In the son’s room, I added a large brass t-rex sculpture which was in line with Modsy customer’s cool sensibility, but it felt like something a kid would get a kick out of, too.” –Janna, Modsy designer

modsy customer living room design with industrial style gallery wall

“I was careful to think about the functionality and livability of the space. I imagined the client and his son hanging out together or with friends, and I also imagined that he might want to work in any space in the house and not just his office. Because of this, I chose colors and decor that were bold enough to go with Modsy customer’s style but versatile enough to fit many different occasions and scenarios.” –Janna, Modsy designer

mid-century modern living room with leather sofa and yellow accent chair

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Buying Guide: 6 Tips for Choosing Your Perfect Desk

Whether you’re working remotely for good or not, it’s looking like many of us will still be working from home in 2021. If you haven’t taken the plunge to set up a more permanent workspace, now’s the time!

With any home office, the most important question is: What desk should I get? Makes sense, since it’s the key piece you’ll be doing all your work on. And when it comes to finding the right desk for your work needs, there are a lot of factors to consider—from storage to style to shape.

For guidance, we’re breaking it all down here for you. Read on to get step-by-step on how to choose a desk that’s right for you, your space, and your work style.

Ready to shop for a desk? Check out our roundup of the best types of desks, then get inspiration for your space in our room gallery for office design ideas!

 

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Identify how you’ll use the desk

Before you look for a desk, figure out what you’ll be using your desk for. Will you be doing a lot of creative or finance work that requires a big surface? Or do you work mostly on your laptop or computer? Start here with how you need the desk to function for you.

Read This Next: These Are The Best Desks For Working From Home

If you’re only doing computer work…

Will you be working on a laptop with a monitor or using a desktop? Naturally, laptops will require less space, so you can get away with a smaller computer desk. If you’re using a desktop or several monitors, you’ll want a longer and wider desk that allows for cord management, and maybe an evening one that comes with a keyboard tray.

If you work with lots of files and paperwork…

A spacious home office desk or one with drawers and storage might work best for you. You may also want a place to stack, arrange, and store your paperwork as well as a spot to organize writing utensils (like a drawer). You’ll also want to consider a desk height that lets you extend your arms and work comfortably.

If you need a desk for both…

You’ll want to consider desks that can accommodate all our work equipment and paperwork. The key is to edit your work material needs down to 2-3 essentials—laptop and monitor, notebooks, paperwork, and all— that you’ll keep on your desk surface. And then consider the desk size and you’ll need it from there.

 

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Will it be a communal workspace?

A collaborative workspace means a larger desk. You can consider a few different approaches:

You can opt for both people to sit on the same side (so there’s enough legroom underneath for two). Or pick a desk that’s closer in proportion to a dining table, which will allow two or more people to share the work surface all around. Here, a dining table that’s not too wide is made into a collaborative desk for two, with chairs on opposite sides of the table. You can find more creative hacks with our dining room office designs.

Another option? If you have the room, you can try arranging a home office with two desks.

 

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Consider the size of your space

Once you’ve figured out how you’ll be using your desk and how many people will be working at your desk, next is figuring out how much room you have to work with.

If you have space constraints…

Maybe you only have a closet, a nook in your living room, or a tiny area next to your bed. On the contrary, you might have a large office, and it would feel odd to have a tiny desk along one wall. You want to take note of the size and nuances of your room and the exact spot for your desk. If you’re dealing with a small space, also take a look at our small home office design tips.

And don’t forget to measure and check for any physical restraints around getting a desk inside your space, such as the width and size of your doorways, stairwells, etc.

Have a sense of your desk shape

After you know the space you’re working with, think about what shape desk will fit best.

For instance, in a small office, you might want to maximize a corner space with an L-shaped desk. Or maybe you need something even more compact, like a corner desk. On the other hand, with a large office where you need lots of surface space, it may warrant a U-shape desk. Get clear on the desk shape and configuration you need, because that will also influence the other office furniture you bring into your space.

 

contemporary home office with wire chair and blue wall

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Think through your storage needs

Now that you have your desk space, size, and shape figure out, it’s time to focus on storage.

To start, ask yourself if you’ll need a compact desk with separate open storage or one that lets you keep everything organized in drawers and built-in storage.

For example, with a small office, you may want to explore ladder desk options, which provide vertical storage and will help you save on horizontal and floor space. Similarly, if your office is narrow, that may call for a console-style desk, which won’t take up much width.

Read This Next: Our All-In-One Home Office Furniture Checklist

For light storage, look for a desk with…

Either no drawers or a single drawer that can hold small items like pens, notepads, mail, etc. Light storage means you’ll have to store supplies in other office furniture and accessories, such as bookshelves, cabinets, and bins. Another option is to choose a desk with enough space underneath that lets you wheel in a small filing cabinet or baskets.

For medium storage, look for a desk with…

Multiple drawers or a connected built-in file cabinet. You’ll find many larger home office desks, such as L-shaped desks, with shelving units connected to them, so it might be worth investing in a whole system if you need to spread out your work on multiple surfaces.

For heavy storage, look for a desk with…

Multiple drawers that are large and deep, as well as desks that have large file cabinets on both sides. You may even want to add open shelving additional above your desk to maximize wall space for storage. You’ll also want to choose a desk with a large surface for desktop items.

 

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Don’t forget: Ergonomics play a huge part

Now let’s consider your work style, because how you work matters when you’re choosing a desk. To start, do you like to stand or sit when you’re working?

A standing desk that can be moved up or down could be great for you if you like to stay active and not stay seated for hours on end. In the same vein, a treadmill walking desk can also be a great option. But if you love to sit and lounge while you work, make sure you get a home office desk with enough legroom to pull up a big comfy desk chair.

Read This Next: The Best Home Office Chairs

Will you need different work ‘zones’?

Do you need to swivel between monitors or have it all in front of you? Do you need different work areas, like a computer and monitor on one side and a surface for paperwork on another? Decide what’s most productive for you. Having an L-shaped or U-shaped desk can be perfect if you need to switch gears a lot for your work. Alternatively, if you want all your work and monitors in front of you, make sure you get a long enough computer desk to house it all on one surface.

What about your arms comfort?

Will you need a home office desk that’s deep enough for your arms and wrists to sit comfortably on the keyboard? A good rule of thumb is to make sure your desk isn’t so narrow that your keyboard or laptop is sitting right on the edge of your table—which will strain your arms, wrist, and neck. Also good to note: Monitors should be eye level or higher to maintain good neck posture.

How about legroom?

Will your desk chair and your legs fit comfortably underneath? If you have really long legs or like to stretch your legs while you work, you definitely want to take this into consideration—and you might even want to float your desk instead of putting it up against a wall to give your legs more room underneath.

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Keep quality and durability in mind

Finally, materials matter when choosing a home office desk. One that’s made using quality materials and well-designed is worth the investment because you’ll keep it for years to come. One that’s the right size but made with mediocre materials and design will eventually show wear and you’ll have to replace it sooner than you think.

Pay attention to high-quality materials

Solid wood, marble, and natural stone-top desks along with ones that have decorative details like carved wood, metal accents, and exotic coverings will cost more. If you need an extra durable desktop, look for office desks with a veneer wood or a highly laminated top. These are also materials that will last for a lifetime, so if you’re ready to splurge, it’s definitely worth it.

Look at the construction

If you use drawers a lot, you’ll want solidly constructed drawers with dove joinery and good rolling mechanisms. Most vintage or older desks have wood-on-wood drawers, which tend to warp and get stuck more, while newer desks come with soft closing mechanisms that prevent slamming. Either way, make sure you check out all the design elements because a table that keeps up with you and your work should always be the benchmark when choosing a desk.

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The 10 Best Types Of Desks For Your Home Office

2020 was the year of the home office. Many of us now are WFH and have a more permanent home office desk setup. But with so many different types of desks to choose from, it can be tricky to find the right one for your style, space, and needs!

Some key things to consider include the kind of desk that’s most functional for your work and space. If you need a lot of surface to spread out your daily work, a writing desk or L-desk might be ideal; but if you live in a small space, a wall desk or a laddery style one make for compact options. No matter your style or space, we’re here to guide you through the different types of desks and the pros and cons to each. Get our tips below!

If you’re just starting to think about your home office desk, check out our quick guide on how to choose a desk, along with our picks for the best desks for working from home and the best home office chairs to go with them.

types of desks

Writing Desk

A minimalist desk type, writing desks often have open designs and limited storage (aside from drawers). It’s has a narrow surface (great for laptops) and a slender, sophisticated look.

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Writing Desk Pros:

  • It’s generally smaller in size so they fit in tighter spaces like a hallway or behind other furniture.
  • They’re great pieces to also float in a room or use in a home office with two desks.

Writing Desk Cons:

  • It typically doesn’t come with storage besides a drawer or small shelf, so you’ll need other storage pieces, like a bookshelf or a cabinet for your office supplies.
  • These desks are not very long or wide, so you’ll have a narrow work surface which is not ideal if you need a full home office desk setup.

It’s perfect if you… need a simple surface for desktop work, or if you only use a laptop and don’t need a lot of surface space.

types of desks

Executive Desk

This stately desk is exactly what it sounds like. Think CEO desk. It has a large work surface and comes with lots of storage, like locking drawers and built-in file cabinets, that get the job done.

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Executive Desk Pros:

  • There’s plenty of drawers and storage compartments to keep all your office supplies and materials within easy reach—no additional storage needed.
  • The wide surface can fit a computer, books, table lamp, and even a laptop on top of all that.
  • They can come in either rectangular, L-shaped, or U-shape configurations, so you can build out a full home office desk station setup.

Executive Desk Cons:

  • It’s very large and heavy, so they take up a lot of room.

It’s perfect if you… have a separate spacious home office for WFH, and you love a desk that’s slightly more traditional in style.

wood corner desk

L-Desk

Compact and functional, the L-desk is made for a corner office that utilizes longer wall spaces. They offer tons of storage and is great no matter the kind of work you do.

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L-Desk Pros:

  • The L-shape helps designate a corner into a work zone that feels separate from the rest of your room. It also makes for a cozy corner office setup.
  • It’s a multipurpose home office desk that naturally keeps everything organized in one place, from the laptop work surface to storage for paperwork and books.

L-Desk Cons:

  • Because of the L-shape, the desk is very limited in terms of where it can go a room.

It’s perfect if you… are looking to carve out a space in a larger room for an office. The L-desk is also great for people who do creative work, since it gives them plenty of surface (and wall) space to spread out their ideas and work.

corner desk

Corner Desk

If you’re working with a small office space, a corner desk makes for a convenient (and unconventional) solution. They have a clean-lined look that doesn’t visually crowd up a room.

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Corner Desk Pros:

  • It’s a compact desk that fits in a lot of function—surface for computer, pull-out drawer for keyboard, wide opening for a comfy desk chair.
  • They usually have open bases that provide a good amount of legroom for a small desk.

Corner Desk Cons:

  • Unlike the L-desk, which can be moved around, this is a home office desk that can only be used in corners.

It’s perfect if you… need to find room for a practical workspace in a small apartment or studio, or you’re looking to fit an office setup into an existing bedroom or den.

types of desks

Secretary Desk

Another solution for a home office desk that takes up minimal footprint is a secretary. While it has a more traditional look, it has tons of storage as well as a spacious hidden work surface!

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Secretary Desk Pros:

  • It takes up very little space and comes with a hinge top that conceals a very spacious desk surface.
  • It’s a compact and luxurious-looking desk that’s both decorative and functional—when it’s not in use, it can close up to blend in with the rest of your space.
  • You can easily work one into a living room or bedroom without it feeling out of place.

Secretary Desk Cons:

  • Secretaries tend to be more traditional in style, though we’re starting to see more and more modern designs!

It’s perfect if you… want a desk that can be more than an office piece. You can use a secretary to store other essentials, like an extra throw blanket or additional books. That also makes it an excellent piece for office guest room designs.

drafting desk

Standing Desk

The ultimate startup office desk—and it’s making its way into homes all over with more and more people working from home. A standing desk is an instant office station wherever you put it.

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Standing Desk Pros:

  • It’s the only home office desk that gives you the option to stand, or sit on an exercise ball, while working.
  • Depending on the type of standing desk, you can manually or electronically adjust the height of your desk.

Standing Desk Cons:

  • Usually minimal in style, the standing desk prioritizes tech and comfort over style, which means it’s not the most attractive desk to incorporate into a larger room or living space.

It’s perfect if you… want the flexibility to choose between working standing up or in a chair. It’s especially great if you want to stay active while working.

types of desks

Ladder Desk

Like the secretary, the ladder desk combines space-saving style and function. It has a small work surface, but it makes up for that with open shelving that maximizes vertical storage space.

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Ladder Desk Pros:

  • The ladder design offers open storage and optimizes vertical wall space, which makes it a compact multipurpose home office desk-and-bookshelf combo.
  • It’s great for small and narrow workspaces, such as a hallway, closet, compact office, or a guest room that double as a home office.

Ladder Desk Cons:

  • There’s not a lot of surface space, so it’s best used for work on a laptop and or writing.

It’s perfect if you… have very little room for an actual workspace but also don’t need a full office. Also check out our small home office design tips for more ideas on creating a compact and functional workspace.

wall mounted desk

Floating or Wall Desk

The only home office desk that takes up zero square footage, a floating wall-affixed desk is the ideal pick for small spaces like dorm rooms, studio apartments, and kids bedrooms.

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Floating or Wall Desk Pros:

  • It can be installed anywhere in a larger living space and takes up vritually no floor space.
  • There’s minimal storage, maybe a drawer or a shelf, so you’ll have to pull in other storage pieces.
  • You get lots of legroom and space under the desk, so you can easily pull up a bigger, comfier chair or even stow away a storage bin or two underneath.

Floating or Wall Desk Cons:

  • A wall desk is a semi-permanent investment, so make sure it’s a piece you want in one place in the long run.

It’s perfect if you… have a small space but want to dedicate a corner for a full office space without it looking visually overwhelming. Also check out our office design ideas for more space-saving tips.

types of desks

Kids Desk

Designed for homework and computer use, kids desks these days are straightforward in style. And they’re usually made in smaller sizes and height that are specific to kids and teens.

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Kids Desk Pros:

  • They usually come with storage drawers and compartments, which make them a practical choice for a home office desk for schoolwork.
  • It’s designed for kids height and perfect with a kids size desk chair.

Kids Desk Cons:

  • As with all kids room furniture, children often outgrow their pieces after a few years, or invest in a more grown-up desk design that works for both teens and adults.

It’s perfect if you… are looking to carve out a workspace for both virtual classroom studies and homeschooling for your kids.

types of desks

Dining Table

With WFH being the norm these days, dining rooms are doing double-duty as home offices. You can easily use a dining table for a home office desk permanently or as a temporary workstation

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Dining Table Pros:

  • A dining table provides tons of work surface space, so you can spread out your work AND still have room for meals at the same time.
  • Multiple people can use the dining table as a collaborative workspace
  • They come in endless colors and styles, so you’re sure to find one for your space.

Dining Table Cons:

  • There’s zero storage for office and work materials, so you’ll have to move things around each time you use it for work.
  • You’ll have to keep it organized and tidy every day so that it easily transitions from work surface to dinner table.

It’s perfect if you… enjoy the idea of a communal workspace at home, and you have an open living area that allows you to experiment with mixed-use dining room office designs.

Feeling inspired? Start designing your office with

our home office furniture checklist!

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My Modsy Story: Rediscovering My Old Self With a New Design

When her two eldest children left the nest Lisa decided she wanted a fresh design for her space with ties to her past. Using Modsy she was able to bring the old and new together.

Customer home makeover

 

Homeowner: Lisa H.

Spaces: Living Room and Office

Her Style: Mod Collector

Customer home makeoverThe Backstory

Lisa and her husband were living with the furniture they bought when they moved into their house 18 years ago. After raising three kids in that home, their furniture was a bit worn, to say the least. When two of her kids moved out of the house this past year, Lisa decided it was time to freshen up the living room and turn one of the kid’s bedrooms into her office.

“When we first moved into our house, we had two little kids and just wanted something sturdy—the furniture was just about function. By the time they moved out, I was sick of our space, and I actually started looking at new houses online. But then I was like—I don’t need to move, I just need to re-decorate!”

“By the time the kids moved, I was sick of our space, and I actually started looking at new houses online. But then I was like—I don’t need to move, I just need to re-decorate!” 

Customer home makeover

The Design Dilemma

Knowing she wanted a fresh, more grown-up space for her husband and herself, Lisa was ready for a brand new style. But, she didn’t know what that style should be or how to source new furniture that would fit with the pieces she wanted to keep.

Customer home makeover

“I had no idea what my style was. This space had been about our kids—but with two of them grown and one teenager, we decided it was time to make our space feel more adult. I knew I’d be spending money on furniture, and I wanted to foolproof that investment to make sure I was buying the right items. I just wanted extra guidance for the process. Since I wasn’t sure how to pull it off on my own, I decided to try Modsy.”

Customer home makeover

The Modsy Moment

Using Modsy, Lisa worked one-on-one with a designer who helped her find furniture that fit perfectly with the items she wanted to keep in her home—like a Korean cabinet and some artwork from her grandmother. Lisa’s Modsy designer managed to create a new design that felt both fresh and personal.

Customer home makeover

“When I opened up my designs, I was stunned. They were nothing near what I expected, but totally perfect. My designer did a great job of seamlessly integrating my belongings into the design. She took my valued items, all cherished but stylistically disparate, and merged them together in a way that looked cohesive with the new furniture.”

Customer home makeover

“My designer even incorporated my love of travel photography into the designs and selected artwork that reflected that interest.”

“My designer even incorporated my love of travel photography into the designs and selected artwork that reflected that interest. The art she chose actually inspired me to go back into my own travel photography archives and find meaningful photos to hang in my office space. The whole Modsy experience helped me tap into my own creativity and bring more of my own vision and personality into my living room and office design. I literally bought everything I needed for the space in a single day! “

Customer home makeover

 

“The whole Modsy experience helped me tap into my own creativity and bring more of my own vision and personality into my living room and office design. I literally bought everything I needed for the space in a single day!”

Customer home makeover

Customer home makeover

The Real Results

Before using Modsy, Lisa never spent much time in the living room and never had a dedicated space to call her own. Now that the living room is redesigned, Lisa finds herself relaxing in it constantly. As for the office, she couldn’t be happier to have a space that reflects her style and interests.

“Both of these spaces are everything I hoped for and more. The living room is so nice now. I love how we got our grown-up space that ties together the old and the new in a meaningful and pleasing way. And I absolutely love my office. It’s the first time I’ve had my very own space in this house. Before, I was taking Zoom calls from the bar counter in the dining room. Now, I have a dedicated workspace that’s also home to my personal interests. It’s so much MY space. My sewing machine, knitting projects, books, and travel photos all have a home in this room. After so many years of our home being geared toward our kids, who I adore, it feels special to have a space that’s all my own.”

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13 Clever Home Office Ideas for Small Apartments

When it comes to decorating small apartments, one of the most common dilemmas is finding a way to make room for a home office. And, with more people working from home now, a home office has shifted from a nice-to-have to a must-have, even in a small apartment.

When it comes to small apartment home offices and work-from-home spaces, the most important thing is to make sure your office takes up minimal floor space. That means choosing small apartment furniture and decor that help you maximize square footage, such as a bookshelf that doubles as a computer desk or stacking floating shelves that utilize your vertical wall space. It also means you’ll have to get creative with your interior design approach, whether it’s having your bedside table double as a desk or creating a corner in your living room that has a table and chair setup that’s fit for work and for meals. From there, you’ll want to work in functional storage, such as baskets and boxes that can be stowed away easily.

If it all sounds a little daunting, don’t worry. We’re here to help. No matter your space, we’ve got plenty of small studio apartment decorating ideas for your work-from-home space to be! Read on and get inspiration from some of our favorite tiny home office design ideas and pick up clever small room desk designs along the way. These are all great ideas for where to put a home office without an extra room!

a bedroom with white walls, large carved headboard, small office, and colorful decor

1. A Place To Create

If you live in a one-bedroom apartment, one of our favorite small apartment home office ideas is to integrate your workspace in the bedroom instead of in your living room.

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Why This Design Works:

  • The desk and workspace occupies its own small zone along a wall but stylistically it still ties into the rest of the bedroom furniture, giving the space a cohesive look.
  • The wall shelves make for functional storage that doesn’t take up floor space, which means you can add more decorative storage, such as easy-to-move baskets and bins.
  • The desk can also easily double as a vanity or display surface for art when not in use.

The Best Part: It’s especially great if you enjoy having people over on the regular. This gives you a workspace in a private setting that’s totally separate from your entertaining and lounge area.

small bedroom with a wood headboard and white desk instead of a nightstand

2. A Double-Duty Station

Need ideas for making the most of your furniture in a small bedroom? Try placing a small desk next to your bed for a workspace that doubles as your nightstand.

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Why This Design Works:

  • Two nightstands aren’t always possible in a petite space. But you’ll get the same amount of storage (if not more) with a desk with two drawers (or more).
  • Curated accents make all the difference when decorating small apartments, so make room for a chic table lamp, colorful artwork, or a cool tapestry.
  • A desk also gives you a huge surface to corral your electronics, stacks of books, and your nighttime beauty products—keeping it all within easy reach!

The Best Part: Think of this as the ultimate two-in-one office setup for a small bedroom. Not only does it save space, but it also adds function as a spacious bedside table with storage!

a small bedroom with a mid-century modern daybed and wall-mounted bookcase desk combo

3. An Urban Home Office

Looking for studio space decorating ideas? It’s definitely not impossible to create an office in an open space that’s used for living, dining, and working. It simply requires clever furniture arrangements that use both horizontal and vertical space!

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Why This Design Works:

  • This mounted ladder desk next to the bed is perfect for small spaces, as it doesn’t take up a tone of floor space while still utilizing the wall space above for storage.
  • The sleek and minimal appeal of the wall desk doesn’t visually clutter up the room.
  • This is versatile in small spaces in that the ladder desk will look just as good next to a bed as it does alongside a sofa.

The Best Part: If you have high ceilings (and even if you don’t), this setup will make your room feel more open and airy. This trumps any ideas you might entertain of having an actual desk.

eclectic bedroom design with a black and white color scheme, dark grey walls, and small white desk instead of a nightstand

4. A Bedroom Corner Desk

For a chic take on the bedside desk look, take a cue from this modern and glamorous room. It’s a functional and fab approach that we see working in any small apartment design.

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Why This Design Works:

  • The Mid-Century style desk next to the bed is vanity first, work surface second, nightstand last. And it serves all those functions with style to spare.
  • Instead of a table lamp, a hanging pendant light takes up no surface space while doubling the lighting for the desk and the bed.
  • Despite all the patterns and accents, the varying neutral tones provide a monochrome palette that makes the small space feel cozy but not cramped.

The Best Part: Lean into the power of a neutral palette, which is calming and comforting in a small space. Start with a white desk and get creative with your color ideas for bedding and art.

attic loft bedroom with a blue bench, dark wood dresser, and small home office design

5. A Working Nook

Who doesn’t love an office nook? With attic loft spaces, there often will be awkward corners and alcoves that are tricky to decorate. One solution? Make them mini tucked-away office spaces.

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Why This Design Works:

  • The writing desk and chair add instant function to an otherwise unused corner.
  • Without having to make room for an office elsewhere, this setup maximizes floor space.
  • The shelving over the staircase in this nook area is an extension to the office nook and provides convenient storage for books and office supplies.

The Best Part: Any sort of table and chair combination can work. Play around with some ideas, like a round bistro table and a pair of side chairs or even a console table and a stool.

small apartment design

6. A Practical Entryway Office

Small spaces call for innovative design ideas. You can’t beat the convenience and function of small studio apartment decorating ideas like this small home office in the entryway of a tiny apartment!

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Why This Design Works:

  • The office area makes smart use of vertical space, from the desk and wall shelving to the adjacent bookcase. There’s lots of room for storage all around.
  • Bar-height options make great desks for small spaces because they occupy a smaller footprint.
  • Everything also enhances the entryway in that the rug is a durable foundation, the desk can be a catchall, and the bookcase can be used for both everyday and office storage.

The Best Part: This is a great multipurpose solution if you don’t need a dedicated entryway. And if you have other ideas for the furniture, go for it! Just pick tall pieces that are space-saving.

small apartment design

7. A Hidden Home Office

File this under best small space office ideas. This under-the-stairs corner desk nook brings function to an awkward area you might find in a duplex or small apartment design with a mezzanine.

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Why This Design Works:

  • This tucked-away office works nicely as an extension to the living room while maximizing all the square footage possible in the under stairs space.
  • The practical yet industrial workspace in the bedroom turns the workspace into a focal point that’s just as stylish as the rest of the room.
  • It feels like a private dedicated work space with plenty of storage despite being in an open living area.

The Best Part: A small desk on wheels is perfect for small spaces since you can easily move it around to serve other functions when needed.

small apartment design

8. A Hallway Home Office

For a small apartment design consisting of one large open-concept room, try this sophisticated home office set up in the hallway corridor leading in from the entryway. You can even get crafty and use a console table as a desk for small room designs like this one.

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Why This Design Works:

  • This compact home office makes use of narrow and tall furniture, such as the desk and bookcase, which take up minimal wall space that would have otherwise gone unused.
  • The hanging mirror conveniently turns the spot into an entryway catchall.
  • The stool slides neatly under the table and doesn’t block the flow from the entry into the living room. You can also explore other ideas for seating, like garden stools or poufs.

The Best Part: If industrial style isn’t your thing, opt for furniture in a style that suits your taste. Just be sure to stick to slender pieces that line up minimally against your walls.

small apartment design

9. A Collaborative Work Zone

Need design ideas for a small living room workspace? Try this makeshift coworking corner floating desk in your own small apartment. It’s one of our favorite ideas for a small home office for two that’s also a breakfast spot.

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Why This Design Works:

  • You can easily mix and match a cafe table with different chairs to build out this work corner in your small space. Or use furniture you already have!
  • This workspace can be used for different purposes when needed, like as a game table or for a meal.
  • Because all the pieces are so versatile and moveable, it doesn’t take up a ton of extra room.

The Best Part: This is a low-lift approach to a workspace that’s great if you’re not looking to splurge on furniture. You just need a few pieces that you can arrange together as needed.

small apartment design

10. A Floating Home Office

Even when decorating small apartments, floating or suspending your home office area in the living room, like this workspace behind the sofa, can make for a smart and stylish solution.

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Why This Design Works:

  • Instead of a console table, a writing desk behind the sofa adds an instant work zone to the room that always feels organic. Plus the two drawers add extra storage for office supplies.
  • When out of wall space, this is a great way to integrate a functional office spot into a small apartment design, where it’s part of the living and entertaining space.
  • This maximizes the space behind a sofa, another tricky space, that would otherwise be unused.

The Best Part: If we’re talking about ideas for partitioning or dividing up a room into zones, a desk is probably the chicest in our book given it’s practical, space-saving, and totally stylish.

small apartment design

11. A Statement-Making Office

Looking for a bold and elegant way to create an office space in your small apartment? This neutral and studio apartment does just that with a shelf-desk that’s both functional and chic.

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Why This Design Works:

  • The built-in desk on the bookshelf is the ultimate space-saving office hack as it doesn’t take up any additional floor space. These are our favorite desks for small spaces.
  • The pair of tall bookcases are eye-catching and practical at once, serving as stylish displays and wall storage while also offering up a small space work surface.
  • The statement armchair and clean-lined coffee table are the main furniture pieces that stand out in the room. They help balance out the office area as additional focal points.

The Best Part: In terms of small apartment design tips, this is a seamless way to integrate an office space into a studio. It not only maximizes space but also storage with the bookshelves.

small apartment design

12. A Home Office With A View

One of the best things about decorating small apartments is that you’re forced to only shop for furniture and designs that are top-notch for you. That’s exactly the case with this alcove office.

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Why This Design Works:

  • Despite being sparsely furnished, this office space, with the small writing desk by the window, is a nice extension off of a living room that feels warm and inviting.
  • You can easily turn the console table into a display when not in use as a work surface.
  • The key interior design element is the row of windows, which lets tons of natural light in the room as well as serve up an amazing view of the outdoors.

The Best Part: You can easily rearrange this space into a living room by simply adding a coffee table and another armchair. Swap in other small furniture and experiment with layout ideas.

small apartment design

13. An All-In-One Studio Space

Think of this as the ultimate studio apartment space where every square footage needs to be optimized for living, sleeping, or working. It’s one small apartment space that needs to do it all!

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Why This Design Works:

  • The high top table and chairs setup is a smart work surface here since it’s slender and has a small footprint and easily fits into a corner or off to the side of the room.
  • This is an ideal dining room office design for small or studio apartments. Because, when not in use, the office area can be used for dining.
  • With the raised profile, you can squirrel baskets or a file cabinet under the table for added storage.

The Best Part: This space spotlights the pretty small things instead of the furniture. So, if you’re debating what to get in your small space, skip the coffee table for the cool floor lamp.

 

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Year In Review: The 20 Best Home Office Designs of 2020

It’s time for our annual Year in Review! While 2020 didn’t turn out how any of us expected, here’s one thing that did go well: home design. At Modsy, we designed countless rooms this year—and today we want to share some of our favorite designs.

Well, suffice it to say that home offices were the spaces we didn’t know we would need at the beginning of 2020—but now hold a place in people’s homes. These spaces were one of our most popular design requests this year, with so many people trying to figure out how to incorporate a work-from-home space into their home.

From dedicated rooms to desks tucked in closets and in nooks under the stairs, we enjoyed the challenge of bringing a home office design into even the most unlikely of spaces. Today, we’re looking back on our 20 favorite home office design ideas from 2020. Perhaps you’ll find some inspiration for your own home office in the mix!

rustic home office with two small wooden desks facing the shiplap wall

1. Reclaimed Visionary

Whether you’re homeschooling two kids or both you and your partner are working from home, this side-by-side desk set-up offers a solid workspace with a minimal footprint! And the rustic decor adds visual interest and looks great against the shiplap walls!

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Why We Love It

With the simple desk designs, this is a perfect way to add a two-person workspace to your home when you don’t have a ton of space to spare!

home office with white desk, vintage red rug and camel leather desk chair

2. Contemporary Minimalist

This home office is pared down to just the basics—a simple desk, a comfortable and practical chair, and some storage space for necessities. This keeps the space organized and uncluttered. Perfect for those who like a minimalist aesthetic or for those who are easily distracted! There’s nothing here to steal your attention away from your work.

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Why We Love It

Each piece in this home office has strong silhouettes. So, while the overall design is simple, it’s definitely not boring.

2020 best home offices

3. Urban Collector

A workspace with a view outside and plenty of natural light is the perfect way to embrace the work-from-home life. (Celebrate the fact that you didn’t have to work in a cubicle this year!) Since this is a narrower space (it’s actually a converted dining room), wall-mounted bookshelves offer plenty of space for storage and display without taking up much floor space.

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Why We Love It

The unexpected color of these walls makes this home office feel cozy and inviting.

2020 best home offices

4. Rustic Traveller

This home office is a total power move. The large desk and wingback chair, floating in the room rather than pushed against a wall, gives off those CEO vibes. But the accent furniture, the high-contrast black and white palette, and the pop of color and pattern in the rug brings in some really fun personality to the space. (Fun fact: this office design was inspired by Kendall Jenner’s home office.)

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Why We Love It

The eclectic mix of furniture and decor styles in this space creates a home office that feels unique and personality-packed.

2020 best home offices

5. Vintage Farmhouse

The design of a space can definitely iimpact how you feel. In this space, we harnessed feelings of empowerment—going with a rich, dark wall color and traditional executive desk for a space that feels established. We think this office could inspire confidence in just about anyone!

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Why We Love It

The dark wall color feels unexpected—but offers just the right amount of contrast to the more traditional furnishings.
contemporary office under stairwell

6. Modern Industrial

Don’t have spare room for a home office? Tuck one into any corner you can—like that awkward nook under the stairs! This small space is just the right size for a desk and a bit of storage. And the angle of the stairs offers a sense of privacy to the space!

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Why We Love It

A coordinating desk and storage piece lends a sense of cohesion to a small home office. (And the dark wood pops against the white walls!)

home office in entryway with counter height desk

7. Mod Enthusiast

We love this clever home office solution for those who live in small apartments. The minimal, modern desk keeps the workspace feeling visually clean. And opting for a bar-height desk not only gives you the option of using it as a standing desk, but it offers extra storage space beneath! Hanging a floating shelf above the desk and having a bookshelf nearby gives you all the storage space you need while keeping the footprint of your actual workspace to a minimum!

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Why We Love It

Opting for all-white furniture gives this workspace a clean, modern vibe which is perfect for a home office in a small apartment.

green walls and wood desk

8. Organic Modern

For a home office with a bold look, try a monochrome color palette. Earthy green walls and a mossy green velvet desk chair—combined with warm wood tones—creates a space that feels soothing and cozy.

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Why We Love It

This color scheme—a warm neutrals take on Organic Modernism in color—creates a space that’s perfect for getting in the zone!

2020 best home offices

9. Atomic Industrial

We love this set-up for those who have a larger space to dedicate to a home office. Two separate desks give individual workspaces for focused work. But a table in the middle offers the perfect space for a shared coffee break—or for working collaboratively

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Why We Love It

Opting for matching desks and chairs when creating a home office for two is a great way to keep the look of a shared home office cohesive.

home office with back to back white desks and large bookcase

10. Mod Visionary

Setting up two desks back to back is a great way to minimize distractions while working. But opting for swivel chairs means you can spin around and chat when you need a break! And a wall of shelves allows both people in this shared home office to show off their personalities and style (and have plenty of storage space).

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Why We Love It

The wall of shelves gives the look of a built-in, which we love. It’s the perfect way to maximize storage and bring some personality into a home office!

2020 best home offices

11. California Modern

Whether you need a shared home office for two or just need a little extra space to spread out, this is the perfect set-up to try. It’s great for collaborating or for supervising your child’s distance learning while you work! Bonus: the dark walls and light curtains create beautiful contrast, and the colorful rug adds just the right amount of warmth to the space!

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Why We Love It

This desk has serious rustic vibes—but with legs that angle slightly outward, it has some modern flair! This space is the perfect embodiment of California Modern style.

home office with large white table and black organic shaped chairs

12. Discerning Collector

This dining room home office is brimming over with bold and dynamic style. With a wall of low shelves, you can show off your collections and sneak in some storage, while the table can transition from workspace to mealtime with ease.

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Why We Love It

The modern, minimal furniture gives this workspace for two some serious style—while the shelving on the back wall gives the opportunity to showcase collected objects, creating a workspace that feels personal.

nautical themed home office cloffice

13. Coastal Cloffice

An office in a closet? That’s right. We call it the “cloffice” and it’s one of our favorite ways to squeeze in a home office when you don’t have extra space. Simply clear out a closet, remove the closet doors, and tuck a desk inside for the perfect little work nook!

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Why We Love It

We love when we can make use of an unexpected nook. Painting the inside of the closet a different color and hanging up some small artwork makes this space feel intentional.

monochromatic dark grey home office

14. Industrial Visionary

Want space to both work and lounge? Consider this approach. A great desk and office chair are perfect for computer work. But when you need to do some screen-free brainstorming (or just need a break in the middle of the day) the couch and bench offer the perfect place to kick back and think or relax.

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Why We Love It

This modern home office balances work and rest, while combining the functions with beautiful and non-traditional color scheme for a home office.

minimalist home office with neutral color furniture

15. Rustic Minimalism

Designing a home office doesn’t have to be complicated. Simply investing in a few key pieces is all you need to create a home office that’s comfortable and inviting. This rustic desk is the perfect focal point for the space, while the bookcase adds beauty and functionality to the office.

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Why We Love It

The neutral color palette of whites, ivories, and natural wood in this Rustic Minimalist home office create a truly calming atmosphere.

boho bedroom with kids desk in rattan chair

16. Boho Corner

Home offices aren’t just for the grownups! With 2020 came the idea of distance learning. And to pull this off, it really helped to give your kids a dedicated workspace! Replacing a nightstand with a small desk is the perfect way to sneak in a homeschooling zone into a kids bedroom.

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Why We Love It

This is a practical solution for adding a workspace to your kid’s bedroom. But choosing a desk or chair with some personality—like this rattan number—is the perfect way to make it feel more fun!

white desk used as nightstand in coastal theme bedroom

17. Modern Farmhouse

The desk-as-a-nightstand approach isn’t just for kids! For small spaces, this is also a great approach for a grown-up home office. Just look for a table lamp that works for a bedside lamp and for shining light on your workspace. And save one drawer in the desk for your bedside necessities!

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Why We Love It

This is a great way to get double-duty function out of one piece of furniture and to fit a home office into a small space!

2020 best home offices

18. Elegant Connoisseur

Want to make a big statement in your home office? Go glam. A brass buffet, floral rug, and pink velvet desk chair add a major glam factor, while the curved acrylic desk adds a dose of modern style. Recognize this savvy style? It’s our take on Kelly Kapoor’s home office for 2020. See all our designs for The Office characters.

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Why We Love It

In your face and over the top, this office was inspired by what we imagine Kelly Kapoor’s home office would look like in 2020. Check out our take on how all of our favorite Office characters would decorate their WFH set-ups in 2020.
green themed home office

19. Rustic Farmhouse

If you’re looking for a home office color palette that inspires productivity, try an earthy green. It’s a color of hope, growth, freshness, and prosperity. And who doesn’t want a bit of that in their work life?? This color is saturated but easy on the eye, creating a sense of calm within this home office.

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Why We Love It

This shade of green pairs perfectly with natural, rustic wood finishes, like this desk and cabinet.

2020 best home offices

20. Less is More Chic

This is another great example of a stylish home office for two. In a smaller space, placing the desks on perpendicular walls helps you make the most of your square footage. And a piece of large scale wall art helps create some visual space between the two workstations.

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Why We Love It

Despite being small, this space feels very stylish. The zebra-print rug and wall art offer some personality, but keeping the color scheme neutral helps the space feel more open and airy.

Want more home office inspiration? Check out our round-up of the most common home office design mistakes (and how to fix them), five layouts to set your little one up for homeschooling success, and how to bring joy into your WFH set-up!

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