Posts

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.

Shop This Look

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.

Shop This Look

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.

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.

Shop This Look

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

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.

Shop This Look

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!

Shop This Look

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.

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.

Shop This Look

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.

Shop This Look

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.

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.

Shop This Look

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.

Shop This Look

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

Shop This Look

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!

Try On Different Types of Desks in Your Room!

Start My Project

attic loft design

Layout Guide: Designing a Family Room + Office in an Open Loft Space

attic loft layout guideIn our “Layout Guides” series you’ll find layout solutions for rooms of all shapes and sizes. Often the trickiest part of designing a space, finding the right layout for your room can be a challenge. This week we’re serving up two solutions for an office/family room in an open loft space.

Attic lofts can be amazing spaces, but they also come with their own set of quirks. If you have a funky loft area in your home, you might be wondering how to make the space work for your needs. The good news is that with a little planning, attic loft designs can have huge potential! This week we look at how we can arrange a loft to fit both a family room and office with two clever and functional layout ideas.

The Space: 20×12 family room + office loft design with A-frame ceilings.

The Style: Atomic Industrial

The Challenge: Designing an attic loft to allow for a designated office area and comfortable family room with lots of space for lounging, playing, and watching TV.

loft designIdea #1: Flexible Sectional Layout

The loft layout idea #1 is all about creating a designated area for cozy family time. The sectional facing the TV makes the layout perfect for family movie nights. We included plenty of seating – and the flexibility of the sectional leaves room for both a play area and a work station. Overall it creates a cozy space that doesn’t feel cluttered.

Shop This Room

Here’s why this attic loft layout idea works.

Ample Seating

The sectional can be arranged in different ways to optimize seating depending on your needs. Plus, the armchair, coffee table and ottoman all provide extra seating as needed.

Attic Loft Friendly

The low furniture hugs the walls and tucks under the a-frame ceilings without wasting space. Since room is tight, we added lots of extra storage in the form of trunks, credenza, storage ottoman and baskets to tuck away all clutter.

Space to Work and Play

The desk is a great small space solution that offers a functional workspace that can double as a side table for the sofa. With room left, we included a play teepee, which provides a kid area that is tucked away from the TV viewing. Finally, the indoor/outdoor rug is perfect for a play space, as it’s durable and easy to clean.

This Is Great If You…

  • Want a cozy family room with plenty of extra seating.
  • Need an optimal setup for TV viewing, where the TV and sofa directly face each other.
  • Want furniture and a design that are kid-friendly.
  • Love extra hidden storage to save room and get rid of clutter.

attic loft designIdea #2 – Double Sofa Layout

Our loft layout idea #2 puts the emphasis on more conversational seating by keeping the TV as part of the design, but not the main focus. One sofa faces it with while the other sofa and chair face toward the center of the room. And the two remaining corners make for perfect work/play areas.

Shop This Room

Here’s why this attic loft layout idea works.

attic loft officeSmall Space Solutions

Here the desk is tucked into the back corner by the closet for a separate workspace that is still part of the family fun. The small table set-up also makes a great, tucked-away play space for kiddos to get creative.

A Loft for Lounging

In this design, the seating is super comfy and geared toward conversation and lounging, but the design also makes it easy to watch TV. The two sofas also offer ample seating (just as much as the sectional) but also give the room an eclectic feel, so it’s not too matchy-matchy.

Slanted Ceiling Friendly

Sloped ceilings can be a real design challenge. Since you can’t hang your art, propping it against the wall is a great solution that makes use of what wall space your have and adds visual interest to the room.

This Is Great If You…

  • Have one sofa that works and want to add another – they don’t have to be perfectly matched.
  • Enjoy a more conversational seating arrangement.
  • Need extra hidden storage to de-clutter your space.
  • Love a clean, modern design.

Shop these Attic Loft Layout Ideas!

Shop Both Layout Ideas