WORDS Nicola Orpen of Bone Design Studio IMAGES Andrea Van der Spuy and Sean Gibson
Form and function are both important parts of a productive office space at home.
Nicola Orpen of Bone Interior Design Studio offers advice on how to create an ergonomic and aesthetically pleasing work area in your space.
TIPS FOR SETTING UP YOUR HOME OFFICE AESTHETICALLY
- Keep your desk minimalist. Invest in a beautiful, functional desk lamp and a stylish print. A cluttered desk is a cluttered mind.
- When doubling up a guest room as an office, avoid expensive commercial desks and office chairs. The desk and chair, if chosen wisely, can double up as a dresser station. Add textured throws and style with a strong decorative vase or sculpture to add an element of layering.
- The view behind you is as important as the view in front. Keep your backdrop clean – a wall with a simple shelf and a few focal pieces or a single artwork off centre to your chair position will make for an unfussy, yet considered presentation.
- In many homes these days, the office takes a transitory space in the home – a hidden nook off the dining room or a floating desk within a passage. As working life becomes a kinetic movement within your daily life, it’s convenient for the space to live within a passage or in the lounge as our lives move from the typical stagnant 9-5 to a faster pace.
TIPS FOR SETTING UP YOUR HOME ERGONOMICALLY
- Position your screen an arm’s length away from where you are sitting.
- Try to have the top of your screen level with your eyebrows to make sure that you sit up straight.
- Keep your knees at 90 degrees to avoid restricting blood flow at the edge of your seat. If your seat height is not negotiable, find a makeshift footstool to raise your feet.
- Although an ergonomic office chair is great, there are pros and cons to a standard chair too. Office chairs move around easily, meaning your body is constantly having to adjust. A good dining room chair with a thin pillow at the back will work just as well.
- If you don’t have a screen stand, books or a stack of magazines make a great stand for your laptop or monitor to lift it to the correct height.
- If you can avoid it, do not have your back to a window that does not have a blind or curtain as the glare can cause eye strain.