A few years ago, most WFH spaces comprised of resting your laptop on your knees as you perched on the sofa, or moving the kids breakfast bowls to one side as you sat at the kitchen table. But now, home office ideas are as popular and as important as bedroom and living room ideas, as you'll be hard pressed to find a family home, student let or millennial apartment without one.
But achieving a space that promotes both style as well as productivity, can be tricky to get right, especially if your home office space is really just a 'zone' within another room of your house.
Luckily I am on hand to guide you, with my fail-safe 'cheatsheet' of essential ingredients to create an inspiring, streamline and stylishly scandi home office, that you can tick off as you go.
My 7 must-have ingredients for creating a modern scandi home office
With over 12 year of experience working on Interior Magazines, and a degree in Interior Design, I know my way around a successful room refresh. Every space in my home has seen a slow, yet complete DIY overhaul to create the bright, comfortable and colourful home that works for me and my family.
My own home office, like many others, was born out of lockdown, when I was fed up with tiptoeing around my husbands' Zoom calls at the kitchen table, as our newborn would very vocally demand my attention.
So our junk-filled loft got converted into a smart WFH space, complete with heaps of storage, biophilic wallpaper and plenty of houseplants to bring the outside in. So if you're looking to create your own WFH space, no matter if you have a small home office or large, and love the timeless style of modern scandinavian design, these are the design ingredients you need to do it.
1. Lush greenery
If you spend long days at your desk, several days a week, you’ll really benefit from sharing your space with a selection of houseplants. Whether you opt for fresh or faux, such as as selection from Wyld Home- or even a mix of the two, they’ll breathe new life into your space, introduce moments of calm, and bring a sense of the outside in.
If you’re lacking on surface space, why not make use of the ceiling, walls and floor: trailing plants look great hanging in holders and wall-mounted pots are perfect for air plants.
2. Memo board
Having a dedicated spot to pin postcards, colour swatches, magazine clippings and anything else that inspires and excites you, will mean you’ll always have a go-to spot to focus on when you hit a mind-blank. It also helps to collate your ideas into one place, so you don’t end up having to sift through piles of paperwork or deep drawers to find what you’re looking for, as well as being a great home office wall decor idea.
If you don’t opt for a wire style like the Metal Farringdon memo board, £38, Garden Trading, a simple fabric covered canvas board works really well with a selection of smart pins, to keep your ideas in one safe place.
3. Stylish desk chair
If you WFH full time, you may not have the luxury of choosing a chair that’s both stylish and comfortable, as you’ll need to prioritise the health of your back over looks.
But if you find yourself at your desk a little less frequently, and especially if your home office also doubles as your bedroom/living room/dining room, then opting for a desk chair that doesn’t look like it’s a prop from The Office, will help blend your working space with your living space more seamlessly. This pink velvet-covered office chair, £285, Rose & Grey on metal castors will bring a little glamour to your modern home office space but still give you the support you need while working at your desk.
4. Sleek blind
A modern scandi space won’t suit heavy curtains, but if the option of shutters feels a little cold for the room, then opt for a sleek roman blind to cover windows instead. An oversized pattern will bring a bit of character to your scheme, like this Roman blind in Tranquil Mineral, from £121 including measuring and fitting, Calm Living range, Hillarys. but stay away from blousy florals or childish spots.
Another option for filtering the light but still achieving privacy is window film. The modern equivalent to net curtains, you can opt for frosted or even on-trend reeded films that allows natural light in, but praying eyes or ugly views of the neighbours bins, out.
5. Stylish storage
No doubt you’ll have all sorts of ‘life admin’ that needs a place to be stored, as well as the kids' old school work, photo albums and back copies of your favourite, inspiring interiors magazines, so a storage locker in a sunny shade like the Fern Middle double locker with shelves in Tickleweed, £299, Bisley, is a great solution for home office storage ideas.
If you’re worried hiding things ‘out of sight’ completely, will lead to ‘out of mind’ immediately, opt for open shelving, but keep everything in neat box files, either colour matched to the room, or covered in wallpaper off cuts that compliment your decor.
6. Curved armchair
Providing the ideal spot for taking screen breaks, a comfortable armchair will be your saviour after an afternoon of back to back Zoom calls. It can also be a spot for a much needed cuppa (or glass of wine) after a hard day's graft, or at least somewhere for the cat to snooze that’s not your lap.
For a truly scandi home office vibe, choose one with plenty of curves, light wood legs and in a warm, pastel shade and add a couple of bright cushions too. Position a simple side table alongside it and hang some plants from the walls or ceiling to create a Nordic nook that will help while away any stresses.
7. Clear zoning
If your office space is within another room of your home, such as a living or dining room, clearly zone the area with a colourful rug, or even a block of colour on the wall behind your desk, a great home office layout idea. This will help to separate a clearly defined office space from the rest of the room and help you to keep work clutter in one space.
To achieve this smart ombre effect on your wall, choose three shades from the same colour family and paint the bottom third of your wall with the darkest, the next third of your wall with the middle shade and use the lightest shade on the top third of your wall.
So there you have it, my cheatsheet of ideas for creating the perfect modern scandi home office, so that your WFH space can inspire and delight you all the while promoting productivity and enthusiasm.
Get the Ideal Home Newsletter
Sign up to our newsletter for style and decor inspiration, house makeovers, project advice and more.
Holly Walsh has been Content Editor at Ideal Home since 2021, but joined the brand back in 2015. With a background of studies in Interior Design, her career in interior journalism was a no-brainer and her passion for decorating homes is still as strong as it ever was. While Holly has written for most of the home titles at Future, including Livingetc, Country Homes & Interiors, Homes and Gardens and Style at Home, Ideal Home has always been her ideal home, and she can be found sharing her expertise and advice across both the printed magazine and the website too.
What is a connected air fryer? This revolutionary smart appliance promises to make cooking even easier
A connected air fryer is PERFECT for those with a busy schedule
By Lauren Bradbury
When to grow tomatoes if you want a bumper crop of extra tasty toms this summer
It's going to be a deliciously Mediterranean summer, tomato fans...
By Kayleigh Dray
How to overseed a lawn for fuller, greener, and healthier grass this spring
Your one-way ticket to a lush and vibrant lawn
By Jullia Joson