Tips For Designing A Study or Home Office


A study by Chad James Group for Holiday House Hamptons. Photography by Alan Barry 

The study, or home office, can prove to be a challenging room to get the décor right. Usually serving a distinct purpose, it’s a place where time is spent focused on specific tasks or assignments. Keeping in mind that the design should reflect the requirements of the space, here are some important elements to consider.

Connecticut Farmhouse by Shawn Henderson


What is the main function of this room? Is it a home office, therefore somewhere you’ll be spending large portions of the day (and possibly a few nights) Monday through Friday? Is it a workspace for your side hustle or hobby? Or will it take on more of a library/study vibe and display a collection of books and curio? Do you want it to provide a more restful capacity in the home, where you can pay a few bills undisturbed during the day, relaxing with a drink and reading material in evenings? Within the same room, you may need a work area as well as comfy chairs for a client visit. While function should be the foremost consideration in every room, it’s arguably most important in the study where you could be spending a good portion of your week.

Late Victorian Chair   ―    Double Pedestal Desk    ―    Mid Century Oil on Canvas

Chelsea Penthouse by Drew McGukin Interiors


Once you’re clear on the purpose of this room, you need the furniture to fit it. Again, this is an area where the form should most definitely follow function – it’s hard to focus for any length of time if you’re not feeling comfortable. Invest some time finding ergonomic furniture for your body. Because environment informs how we feel in a space, avoid filling it with too many pieces – an overcrowded office often translates to a cluttered mind. The design of this room should elicit clear thinking, narrow down to a few essential pieces and make these your anchoring pieces. A chair and desk are obvious starting points.

Swivel Chair     ―   Italian Writing Desk    ―   Viennese Chair

Beach Bohemian by Alex Papachristidis Interiors


Ideally, this room will have at least one window allowing for plenty of natural light. Inevitably though you’ll still need to bring in other sources for those grayer days or when you’re burning the midnight oil. A standing lamp and desk lamp is a good foundation, offering both overhead and directional lighting.

Modernist Desk Lamp   ―  Architect Desk Lamp  ―  Jean Royere Chandelier

Beverly Hills Estate by Jamie Bush and Co.


Just as the content of a room can affect our experience in it, so can the color. Connected to nature, green resonates effortlessly with us and symbolizes growth and renewal. Purple can stimulate creativity and is associated with ambition and intuition. Neutral tones are always a safe choice since they’re calming and unlikely to be distracting. Conversely, if space is intended as more of a cozy retreat, darker colors might be entirely appropriate. There are some universal principals when it comes to color psychology but also let your personal preferences to guide you. While one might find yellow an energizing color to be surrounded by, others might find it a migraine inducing.

Blue Scandinavian Arm Chair   ―  Brass Black Glass Coffee Table    ―  Josef Hoffman Table Lamp

 Central Park Home by Shawn Henderson

Personal Touch:

Often serving a different function to other rooms,  it can be pleasing when a balance is struck in the office or study between reflecting the design elements of the rest of home and hitting its own stride in décor. Consider a vignette of objects you find motivating or offer inspiration. Foliage can offer an instant mood booster. Ultimately though take into account your own knowledge about yourself – what one finds increases focus, another may find to be overstimulating.


Stella Rug    ―    Aluminium Skull    ―      White Stone Carved Coin