5 ways to transform your home office

Inject your dull-as-a-Monday-morning study space with a little pizzazz
Modern home office viewed throw open steel framed black doors.Photographer: Louise Roche | Styling: Kylie Jackes

Whether your home office is your full-time work station or the centre of domestic operations, it needs to feel cosy and fit in with the interior scheme of your home.

There are many ways to achieve this. Clever storage will allow you to keep the room organised and even display your favourite books or treasured items, while colour-washing the room can help you remain focussed and inspired.

Seem like too much to ask of one room? We have a few tips to help take your home office from drab to fab.

Home office styling ideas
(Credit: Photo: Nic Gossage / Stylist: Lisa Burden)

1. Add indoor plants

When you’re deep in deadlines, anything that might add serenity to your workspace is welcome. Indoor plants are a great way to cut stress by introducing a nod to nature and giving a boost to your physical health by improving air quality.

“Use a palm tree to bring the outside in and bring calm to the room,” says interior designer Natalee Bowen of Indah Island. Other potted winners, which can survive a little neglect in busy periods, include peace lilies, mother-in-law’s tongue, Zanzibar gem or, for trailing charmingly off a high shelf, chain of hearts.

Home office styling ideas with indoor plants
(Credit: Photo: Louise Roche / Stylist: Amber Keller)

2. Try multi-sensory styling

“It’s important to consider all of the senses in any room, but in the study especially,” says stylist Chris Carroll of TLC Interiors, who suggests using fragrance as a tool to help you feel comfortable and focused. Lavender is said to reduce stress, and cinnamon to overcome mental fatigue.

“Colour in a study is personal, but try to keep intense tones and patterns to a minimum”

Chris Carroll, TLC Interiors
study nook with floating bench
(Credit: Photography: Louise Roche / Styling: Kylie Jackes)

3. Upgrade your home office lighting

Just as in any other room, lighting can make your study sing. “Many of us use our study at night, so mood lighting is key,” says Chris.

“Opt for lighting that’s slimline and doesn’t present too much visual bulk. A desk lamp with a rotating head is good because you control the direction and intensity of the light.”

european farmhouse style build brisbane office grey desk
(Credit: Photography: Louise Roche / Styling: Kylie Jackes)

4. Create a personal vignette

Unleash inspiration to create a beautiful scene with objects that speak to you.

This is also a great way to create breathing space on shelves that might otherwise be a solid wall of files. Choose pieces that are unique, personal to you or that make you smile.

melbourne 1920s bungalow teal walls study
(Credit: Photography: Martina Gemmola / Styling: Ruth Welsby)

5. Home office storage

When it comes to workspaces, cleanliness is next to productiveness. But for a space that puts the ‘home’ in home office, try thinking outside the filing cabinet. Stock up on small storage boxes to be displayed on floating shelves – soft grey is soothing and non-distracting, or go for colour if bright hues jump-start your mental processes.

“Felt storage boxes and baskets add textural interest,” says Chris.  

(Credit: Photography: Simon Whitbread / Styling: Heliconia)

Avoid visual clutter. Keep the actual desk surface completely clear of all but the necessities – computer, in-tray – and one or two joyful decorative objects.

Design tip

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