Art & Design Interiors & Design

Working from Home: How to Create an Inspiring Workspace

Now, more than ever before, our homes are a space for both work and leisure—these expert tips can help to ensure it’s a beautiful one to be in

Working from home is currently a necessity, but it’s a trend that has been on the increase for a number of years. In fact, in 2016, Research by Boston-based consultancy Strategy Analytics estimated that the global remote workforce would grow to almost 43 percent of employees by 2022. While it can feel liberating to lose the constraints of a traditional office setting, making sure your home workspace fosters both creativity and productivity can be a tricky balancing act.

To find out how to create a home office that does both, Luxury Defined spoke to award-winning interior architect Sevil Peach—who has set up office spaces for Vitra, Deloitte, and Microsoft—as well as three homeowners who have perfected the art of working remotely.

An office design for furniture brand Vitra
Sevil Peach’s office design for Swiss furniture company Vitra, in Los Angeles, features a variety of thoughtful working and meeting areas to suit different tasks throughout the workday.

Consider Your Needs

“Everyone has different needs when it comes to office design,” says Peach, who often speaks on the subject at conferences and design fairs. “So I aim to create a variety of work settings that suit various tasks, which might change throughout the day.”

The way to make working from home successful is to surround yourself with objects that inspire you—Nancy Almodovar

She recommends utilizing different spaces in ways that work for you. “Working from home doesn’t have to mean working at a desk in a private room,” she says. The same is true of different professions. “An architect or curator might want space to spread large printouts or drawings, whereas an office professional may only need compact surroundings.”

A home office in North London
This north London artist's studio was transformed into a beautiful home office by maximizing natural light and framing the view to the garden. Image: Gilbert McCarragher

Peach worked on the design of a Grade II listed artist’s home in Belsize Park, north London. High on the client’s priority list was an uninterrupted view of the mature trees, and a library space with a specific type of couch.

“He liked to sit with his books spread out next to him but didn’t want anything too comfortable, as this was still a space for work. We found a sofa that was quite structured, not too soft, which had a wide, flat surface.” The client’s desk faced a picture window which framed the garden, and shelves covered an entire wall to become a library.

An office designed specifically for working from home in Sante Fe, New Mexico
A home office need not only be functional—as Bud Hamilton says of his: "While my office is primarily a workspace, it was very important to me that it also provided an enjoyable, relaxing ambience."

Bud Hamilton—whose home on Old Sunset Trail, in Santa Fe, New Mexico is on the market with Barker Realty, Inc.—approached the design of his bespoke office similarly. “Knowing I’d be spending a lot of time in this part of the house, I wanted to make sure it fulfilled all my needs,“ he explains. “It had to be comfortable and functional, with ample desk and storage space. But I also wanted a pleasant ambience that made the most of the beautiful mountain views and had room for artwork.”

A minimalist home office design
Nancy Almodovar's contemporary home office was created by JD Bartell Designs, which placed an emphasis on natural lighting and allowed space for her personal momentos to shine.

Surround Yourself with Inspiration

“I believe the way to make working from home successful is to surround yourself with objects that inspire you,” says Nancy Almodovar, president and CEO of Nan and Company Properties in Houston, Texas. “In my home office, I make sure to have fresh flowers delivered weekly from my favorite florist and I keep family pictures and small mementos around me. It reminds me of the people who are dearest to me, and who I strive to work hard for. They are definitely a source of inspiration.”

Prioritize good natural light and a view of the outside; whether onto a garden, the ocean or the street, it doesn’t matter—Sevil Peach

“I would advocate having books to read during your breaks, or even games that are mentally stimulating, and art on the walls,” says Peach. Almodovar agrees: “All of these considerations are important to because they inspire creativity.”

A home office with a sea view
A desk with a view is Giancarlo Bracco's ultimate workspace must-have. "Sometimes, when I am very focused on my work, the unconscious perception is of being at one with nature," he says.

For Giancarlo Bracco, the founder and partner of ImmobilSarda SRL properties in Sardinia, Italy, inspiration is found just outside his home office. “My advice is to place your desk somewhere with a view. The outside world is always a source of inspiration—at least for me,” he explains. “My workspace is designed to provide a panoramic outlook over the sea. It gives me the harmony I need to concentrate on my work.”

Peach believes Bracco is onto something: “You should always prioritize good natural light and a view of the outside—whether onto a garden, the ocean or the street, it doesn’t matter.”

Banner Image: Getty Images