Richard Read created a home office using space in his formal dining room, which was going unused.
PHOTOGRAPHY BY LANCE GERBER
Working in the kitchen for several years in a previous home had not been productive. I didn’t have enough surface space to spread out, the open plan had too many distractions, and it was too easy to grab something from the fridge or pantry. Stacks of paperwork sorted by client project would accumulate on the kitchen island, counters, and even the dining room table until a guest or client would come by. I’d hide all the stacks away in drawers then bring them back out and have to reorganize my work and start over every time. This was creating a few major headaches.
Repurpose the formal dining room as my office. Adopt a better system for organization. Include an element of fun.
“It’s very important to me to have an office with a fun mood that makes it inviting.”
First, I needed to close off the room for total privacy and focus. The dining room was open to the foyer and seen by all who walked in. The mood also needed to inspire. I didn’t want to feel like I was sitting in an unused dining room. Behind the scenes, I added two large floor-to-ceiling cabinets for the printer, shredder, office supplies, and fabric samples. New shelving holds baskets for each client project.
Barn doors, not only for privacy but also because they are fun. Sheer drapes add another layer of privacy. Layering art over wallpaper by Cole & Son made the space more inviting to work in. I often use my home office for client presentations, so I incorporated furnishings from vendors I carry at the store. I think it’s very important to touch, feel, sit in, and see those pieces in a home setting.
The new system created a more organized way for me to work. I grab each client basket and put my focus on one project at a time rather than spinning in circles in a kitchen and working on several at a time. We recently sold this home and purchased one with a similar floor plan. I’m designing the new office space based on the principles I learned completing this one.