Say hello to the ‘cloffice’ – the latest space-saving working from home trend

The office-in-a-closet is popping up all over Instagram
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  • Not heard of a ‘cloffice’ before? A combination of ‘closet’ and ‘office’, it’s basically a closet that’s been turned into a workspace…or a desk in a cupboard…and it’s the latest hack to get savvy DIYers excited.

    Related: Small home office ideas – stir creativity no matter how tight your home is on space

    A clever solution if you’re working from home and struggling to find desk space, a cloffice is also a brilliant way of putting an under-used cupboard to good use. And the great part is, at the end of the day, office kit and clutter gets hidden away behind closed doors.

    A cloffice doesn’t require an enormous amount of space – simply, a cupboard wide enough to accommodate a work surface and some space above for a few shelves.

    Slot in a desktop

    Office in a kitchen cupboard

    Image credit: Nicholas Yarsley

    Start with the work surface first and everything else should slot into place around it. You could use a shelf as a desktop, provided it is positioned at the correct height to work at – average desk height is between 70 to 76cm. Or you could consider slotting a small desk inside your cupboard.

    If your shelf isn’t deep enough, installing a slide-out shelf or a drop-down desktop is a clever way of extending the desktop and will give space for a keyboard.

    Think about a seat

    Office in a white wardrobe

    Image credit: IKEA

    Choose a seat or stool neat enough to tuck under your desk and allow the cupboard doors to close. Alternatively, choose a swivel chair on castors that you can wheel out of the way when work is done.

    Incorporate storage

    Office in a cupboard with cubbyhole storage

    Image credit: Mel Yates

    Make use of the full height of your cupboard to maximise storage. Add extra shelves if needed, fit cubbyholes for stationery or try a mini set of slide-in drawers to tuck under a desk. A pinboard on the wall or on the back of cupboard doors will also come in handy.

    Pack a punch with the decor

    office in a cupboard with blue interior

    Image credit: Megan Taylor, from 2LG studios book “Making Living Lovely” available from Thames and Hudson

    It’s your space, so have fun with the decor and kit out your cloffice in a playful pattern or energising colour. Be as bold or as reserved as you please.

    Consider replacing the doors

    Office in a cupboard with wood interior

    Image credit: Brayer Design

    Think about swapping the doors if your cloffice is in a living space or high-traffic part of your home. Outward-opening doors require more space than neat bi-fold doors which stack back on themselves.

    Pale wood home office with white sliding doors

    Image credit: Armelle Habib

    Sliding doors are another option, which give a neat, streamlined look. You’ll need space on one or both sides (for doors to slide back) plus tracks at floor level or ceiling height for doors to slide in and out on.

    Go wall-to-wall

    Home office concealed behind sliding doors

    Image credit: Mel Yates

    For the ultimate work set up, consider going wall to wall. Not strictly a closet, but if you have the spare wall space, installing a longline desk and a wall of storage above will give you all the office space you need. Sliding panels provide a stylish cover-up that will conceal the work space when it’s not in use.

    Related: Home office storage ideas for any space – to help you keep on top of your work

    Will you be trying one of these out in your home?

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