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Spotlight on… the WFH office

Sometimes, the thought of decorating an entire space or the whole house can be understandably overwhelming, so why stress? Instead, focus on just one area of a room – a corner, a nook or a detail – to transform it quickly and easily with a lick of paint. A smaller job can feel more achievable while giving you just as much satisfaction as a bigger one, if not more. Here, we round-up clever ways you can create – or update – a home office. Whether you’re WFH all the time, or hybrid-working, these ideas will inspire you to get down to business, and fast. 

Make the old new again

Old desk collecting dust in the garage or a filing cabinet not quite the right colour? Fear not: with our new product, Simply Refresh Multi-surface, you can paint directly onto wood or metal without priming first. Quick and easy, simply open a can and get cracking by upcycling what you have, instantly making the old new again. Here, we’ve used exotic Coral Charm™ in a statement pattern on both the hanging shelf and filing cabinet, with warm Natural Calico™ on the desktop, but allow your imagination to get creative! Against a backdrop of natural Egyptian Cotton™ and Rock Salt™, the palette creates a calm but uplifting home office, while Boho Blush around the window and above the desk frames the view and creates a focus. For something different, why not flip what we’ve done here and paint the walls in something bold and the details in something neutral? Village Maze, Faded Indigo and California Days are just as inspiring. 

Put your alcove to work

While an alcove can provide shelves for books and more, built-in storage also eats into all-important floor space, meaning less room for furniture (and you). Instead, we’ve carved-out the space for a WFH office, meaning the rest of the room stays clear and uncluttered. To define the area, we’ve zoned it with a darker colour, offset against a pale shade used elsewhere. Not only does the contrast between Decadent Damson™ and Natural Hessian™ provide visual separation, but it’s also conducive to focus and concentration, while feeling calm and peaceful for particularly tough days. When the working day is done, you can simply push the chair beneath the desk, and the space becomes a bedroom once more. 

Open the door to another world  

From clothes to shoes and bags, a built-in closet provides convenient storage for all the important things in life, but equally it can be used to conceal a clever home office. Here, we’ve cleaned out clothes to make room for a built-in desk with shelves above, providing room for a stool to slide underneath, a laptop and stationery to sit on top, and folders to be stored above. The result is a secreted-away home office that can be shut-off from the rest of the room, as required, with a floor lamp moved to direct light when it’s needed. To create synergy with the space, we’ve painted the wall behind the shelves in the same Almond White™ and Lemon Tropics that frames either side of the door, while zoning with a pop of Copper Blush™ beneath the desk. The ombré effect reveals something of the magic behind the door when it’s shut – without giving the game away.   

Make the most of a wonder wall

Time and time again, we’ve demonstrated how small-space living doesn’t need to hold back your creativity, but have you heard of ‘slim-space’ living? While a strip of wall between two floor-to-ceiling windows might be considered redundant and left unused by most, we know better. In this living room, we’ve made the most of a narrow section of wall with particularly high proportions by making a feature of it, painting the surface with a smart Sapphire Salute™ and White Cotton™ stripe effect. Not only does the pattern give the area stand-out against the rest of the room ­– complete with desk, chair, accessories and artwork – but it proves that even the most unassuming parts of the home can be taken to task. For important video calls, when making a good first-impression is a must, why not pull the desk out and sit with your back against the wall? A guaranteed ice-breaker. 

Throw some shapes in the office

Work and play don’t need to be mutually exclusive, as this fun and joyful home office proves, featuring impactful colour-blocking in Bright Skies and White Cotton™ to zone individual areas overlaid with a circle motif in front of the desk. The small detail makes the designated space work even harder, adding interest and character, while painting it in Pressed Petal™ provides focus and concentration. Better still, the design avoids the need for artwork, as it is the artwork. Add a tonal lamp to accentuate the scheme further and complement with unpainted wooden furniture to keep eyes firmly on the walls. Here, we show you how to paint a circle in just three steps. 

A natural leader

While we’ve shown you how to zone a WFH office using colour – from colour-blocking to adding pattern or a motif – sometimes keeping things simple is just as powerful. Here, we’ve kept the colour of the wall in front of the working area the same as the rest of the room, helping it to blend in rather than stand-out in Blush Pink™. The neutral hue is effective in discreetly incorporating the office into the multi-purpose space so it doesn’t look like it’s taking up too much room or dominating. Instead, the furniture – an industrial-style desk and chair – plus eclectic accessories, give the space its own identity that’s separate from elsewhere.   

Pick-up a copy of Let’s colour magazine in your local decorating store for more inspiration; or watch our how-to videos at youtube.com/duluxuk

Share your micro makeovers on social tagging @DuluxUK – you could feature on our Instagram and Facebook pages.

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