As people start working from home amidst the coronavirus outbreak, they’re having to convert living space into functional office space. There was already a rise in teleworking before the pandemic, so home office design resources and ideas are plentiful. One great design trend is adding an office or workstation in your kitchen. Your kitchen is typically the center of your home, so you can keep an eye on your kids, prepare meals, and do your work – all in the same room. If you’ve never used your kitchen as a home office before, here are three simple ways to make it more office-friendly.
Repurpose What You Have
As you’re likely in crisis mode right now, you don’t have the time or resources to renovate extensively for your kitchen office. Fortunately, you don’t need much to carve out a workstation in your kitchen. You can easily repurpose what you have, whether by using empty wall space or reorganizing cabinets.
Kitchen offices fit well into any dead space you have. Position a small table and chair against an empty wall and you have an accommodating office space. Unused kitchen corners, window seats, and the ends of bar worktops can also be easily converted into office space.
If you situate your desk against a wall, use empty wall space to your advantage. Put up a corkboard so you can stick important documents or reminders to it – and some cute photos of your family! You could also reorganize your cabinets so that you have dedicated office storage near your desk. If you don’t have cabinets above your desk, consider installing some quick shelves to hold papers, books, and other office supplies.
If you already have a desk to fit in your kitchen, then converting your office will be a breeze. If you don’t have proper office furniture handy, though, you can either set up a movable workstation at the kitchen table or grab a smaller table from somewhere else in the house and use it in the kitchen.
Use Storage Wisely
When it comes to dual-purpose spaces in your home, nothing is more important than smart storage. For an office that fits seamlessly into your kitchen, you might have to get creative to fit all the supplies and materials you need to do your work.
Pull-out shelves are a great way to hide your printer or documents when you’re not using them. Another way to demarcate working space from cooking space is with a moving kitchen island or cart. You can set it between your desk and the rest of the kitchen to give you a sense of separation and to save on space.
Speaking of space-saving solutions, you could also try under-the-desk storage. Stack up your printer, computer tower, documents, or other supplies underneath your desk and hide it all with a curtain. Another kitchen storage idea is stacking up decorative boxes or wooden baskets near your office space.
If you’ll be spending a lot of time at your workstation, you’ll want it to be comfortable. While some kitchen offices work fine with a barstool or small ottoman as seating, these won’t be ideal if you’re spending all day at your desk working. Use a comfortable, ergonomic chair – it could be one of your existing kitchen chairs or a chair from somewhere else in the house.
Another feature to consider when setting up your kitchen office is lighting. If you don’t have the space available near a window for natural light, then make sure your workspace is well lit. Either overhead lighting, a desk lamp, or under-shelf lighting will ensure you don’t strain your eyes as you work.
Finally, keep in mind the technical constraints in your kitchen. You’ll have to plug in several devices, so consider getting a surge protector. Keep all the wires and cords as hidden as you can, either by stowing them underneath your desk, or stashing them in a small storage box. Also, remember to set up your new office space a good distance away from where you cook and nowhere near the sink! You don’t want to risk damaging your laptop or other devices because of spills or accidents.
Final Thoughts on Making Your Kitchen into a Usable Home Office
Converting a room or space in your home into a viable home office is essential for many people at the moment. Luckily, adapting your kitchen into a home office is easy with these three tips. At Multiliving, a firm of North London kitchen designers, we advise clients on integrating home offices into their kitchens all the time. As long as you’re willing to rethink your current space, devise unique and practical storage solutions, and provide yourself with enough comfort and safety, then you’ll have an accessible home office in your kitchen.