Home Office Havens

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More and more people are working from home these days, and if you’re one of those you might be able to increase your productivity – and can definitely be more inspired – working from home when you follow these simple rules.

1. The Right Stuff

The Right Stuff
Image: (Left) Toby Scott for The Design Files ; (Right) Will Pryce/Arcaid Images for The New York Times

You need to be sure you have the right stuff, which, in the instance of a home office, boils down to three things: a dedicated workspace, a good chair, and adequate storage. By a dedicated workspace, I mean a surface in your home that is used for nothing but your work—not your dining room table when no one’s eating, that’s not dedicated. Productivity means not having to scoop up your work and move it. A good chair is essential to providing focus on the work; always necessary for getting things done. And adequate storage is whatever that means for you—if you’re a digital photographer (like the office on the left, above) it means hard drive space. Otherwise, it probably means drawers.

2. Adequate Lighting

Adequate Lighting
Images: (Left) Trevor Tondro for The New York Times ; (Right) Csaba Barbay on Behance

This could be considered the fourth “Right Stuff” item, but it’s so important it deserves its own mention. There’s no excuse for not having adequate lighting in your workspace; most of the time that means more than just the general lighting of whatever room you’re working in. Think task lighting, from table lamps to adjustable desk lamps.

3. A Visual Break

Visual Break
Images: (Left) tymattson on Instragram ; (Right) Design Sponge

Finally—and here’s where you can go crazy with the inspiration (and should)—be sure to create a way to give your eyes a frequent rest from your work. A visual break utilizing the most inspirational and personally rewarding art, clippings, mementos, and other items you can find.

What rules do you follow for creating a productive and inspirational home office?

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Dave Hime, founder/curator of JapaneseTrash.com, has been an interior design addict for as long as he can remember. In 2005, he bought a house-in-progress and missed several opportunities to have an influence on his own home decor–leaving him wanting more. With design heroes such as Blake Dollahite (ruraltheory.com) and Robert & Cortney Novogratz (thenovogratz.com), Dave began seeking out online resources that would exemplify the interior design practices he's most drawn to: using color, texture and simple materials well. Bringing all of this together, along with his specific focus on providing interior design inspiration from a man's point of view, is Dave's mission: masculine design.