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A fully functional home office doesn't need to have its own separate room. Tucked into the corner of a dining room, this full-fledged office gets its deluxe status thanks to plenty of storage and ample work surfaces. Use space wisely by installing shelves above the desk and cabinets below the work surface.
If your office needs are more sporadic, consider a simple writing desk for the occasional bill-paying sessions or mail sorting. This writing area is stylish but serves the function of an office as needed.
A handsome secretary can turn any room into an office. Painted to match the bedding and draperies, this blue secretary blends into the cottage-style bedroom, while providing a spot to write and a place to store stationary, books, and more.
Thanks to tablets, laptops, and wireless internet, the office can be anywhere. But that also means office supplies and device chargers can be anywhere. Corral all of your office supplies into a single cabinet and add a charging station, so you have a central location to rejuice devices and find pens, paper, and file folders.
Employ an unused landing space at the head of the stairs as a central home office. Stock the space with cabinets, desks, or tables and comfortable chairs to create a central work zone for homework or office work that the whole family can utilize.
Create a corner office at home by zoning a section of a larger room (such as a living room or family room) as a work zone. Behind this desk, a large bookcase fulfills all the storage needs of this work area in one simple system. For more storage, hang floating shelves along the wall. When planning your home office, make sure there are adequate outlets nearby for computers, printers, and task lighting.
Surround yourself with beauty while you are hard at work. Hang art that you love above your desk, or add a few decorative items to your desktop. Improve function by adding a pretty lamp or wall sconces for better lighting.
Add the function of command center to your office with a wall calendar and a bulletin board. Use the calendar to keep track of everybody's activities and the bulletin boards to keep track of important papers and reminders.
Old desks, such as the one tucked into this corner, often have plenty of drawers and storage, but might not be up to par in the style game. Paint a secondhand desk a fresh color that suits your room's style.
Go to the next slide to learn how to paint furniture.
In a small space, take office storage to the walls to keep work surfaces clutter-free. In this space, cubbies were mounted to the wall and magazine holders were screwed into the bottom of the cubbies for an innovative mail sorter. For an easy and affordable work surface, transform a slab door into a desktop by mounting it to a wall and placing bookcases or file cabinets beneath it for support.
Bump a desk up against a window with a deep windowsill and use the sill as an improvised shelf for baskets and boxes. Plus, placing a desk near a window provides plenty of natural light.
Do you need an office for more than one person? Use a dining table as a desk, and place it perpendicular to a wall so several people can sit at the table at once. This table bumps up against a wall of built-ins, which add storage. A large bookcase also works wonders for an office setup like this.
Turn storage upside down with an inventive way to use kitchen cabinets. Hang a cabinet horizontally and attach piano hinges to the doors so it can open to become a mini desk area. When not in use, the door can simply be closed to conceal the work area and maintain a sleek appearance.
Turn an existing dresser or other unit with deep drawers into a file cabinet with one simple addition: Install adjustable hanging file frames (available at office supply stores) in the drawers and develop a filing system with tabbed hanging folders.
Turn an awkward closet into an office with a few quick changes. Remove the closet doors and paint (or wallpaper) the interior. Hang shelves along the wall and tuck in a desk for a quick-fix office that packs efficient function into a small sliver of space.
For a simple, do-it-yourself desk, employ sturdy file cabinets as a base and a large desktop, or painted panel, as the work surface. Position the desktop on the file cabinets and screw into place.
Capitalize on a corner office space by extending upper cabinetry into an L shape rather than just straight across the back of the desk. Use this newfound storage space for display pieces or for office necessities, such as files and desk supplies.
Take a storage lesson from this small desk space and add in storage wherever you can. Cubbyholes along the bottom of the desktop provide space for tucking in papers and notebooks, while a file cabinet below stores more supplies, as well as important paperwork. Above the desk, a shelf stores even more office essentials, and magnetic strips act as a posting place for important notes and to-do lists.
Serve all your organizational needs with a combination of basic solutions. Mount squares of fabric-covered corkboard for posting notes, pegboards for hanging supply cups and bins, and whiteboards or chalkboards for jotting down reminders.
An underused alcove was given new life as an office and storage station. A basic desktop was upgraded with a pretty skirt to conceal storage beneath. Shelves were mounted high along the wall to create more headspace above the desk. Higher shelves such as these are ideal for storing infrequently used items. When needed, they are easy to locate but are kept out of the way to make room for things used on a regular basis.
Inconspicuously add an office to a living area with a few simple tricks. Incorporate as much concealed storage as possible, such as these clean-front cabinets which add office functionality without distracting from the rest of the room. Take steps to add in elements to tie the space to the rest of the room. A bamboo chair and burlap-covered bulletin board harmonize with the living room's natural look.