Q: I live in a loft that is tall, long and narrow. How do I create an office area that looks seamless with my living room, offers plenty of storage and doesn’t block patio doors?
Rose P., Vancouver
A: What a great spot for a compact office. The key to success is to create solutions that will bring your little work nook to life without breaking the bank or looking like a cubicle. Here’s how:
1. Add strategic storage
Since you’ve got lots of height, you should play it up. A tall, narrow bookshelf combines storage and display and adds visual interest to your vertical space. You’ll need lots of room to stow your stuff, so pick up a variety of pretty storage boxes and tuck them neatly into the open compartments of the bookshelf.
2. Rearrange your furniture
Take advantage of your spectacular view instead of facing a wall while you work. I suggest placing the desk perpendicular to the wall, like a peninsula. I found one that attaches to the bookshelf, which I think is really clever, and it’s a steal at only $50! Grouping work-related pieces together against the wall allows better traffic flow around the desk without sacrificing access to the patio. I’m not sure if you have a dining table already, but if you don’t, this desk could easily double as one.
3. Play with colour
Your home has a contemporary look, so you should select pieces that blend with the streamlined architecture, then accent with some exciting bursts of colour. Since your desk is a rich cobalt, embrace that palette and inject some additional blue accents to perk it up. A multi-hued green-blue serving platter could be hung on the wall as a single focal point, or mount a group of three as a simple, inexpensive artwork alternative. A bolder, large-scale lamp would look wonderful on the desk, especially with a coloured shade like this teal one. You could even paint the office wall a rich cobalt colour. Once you’re done, you’ll never want to leave your new office with a view.
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