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Bright Ideas for the Home Office

December 20, 2018

Across the spectrum of careers, modern work life is changing. From side hustles to full-time, work-from-home staff positions to entrepreneurship, the home office has become an essential part of our homes. Turning a spare bedroom or den into a home office that projects professionalism and maximizes productivity isn’t rocket science, but it isn’t as simple as swapping the daybed for a desk. This how-to will show you what lighting can do to help make your home office your favorite place to work.

Define the Home Office space


Mixing domestic life and work life can be a productivity killer. It’s essential for your space to be distinct and well defined, even if your home office is located within a less professional room. Your business and your everyday workflow should be first in mind while creating or updating your office lighting. What purposes will the space serve? Will you be meeting clients, or will you need to bring in vendors or partners for collaborative work? Do you need an energetic, creative atmosphere or do you want a home office that is unquestionably secure and formal? A corporate consultant and a freelance animator might both need lighting in their workspace, but the style of lighting fixtures they choose will be worlds apart.

Baseline Home Office Lighting

The lighting scheme of a home office should start with creating a baseline of light for basic illumination. Diffuse overhead lighting is almost universally the first choice. There is a common misconception that overhead lighting in workspace should be sterile and jarringly bright. In traditional offices, the lighting design is developed to support a broad array of needs and tend to set the brightness to a much higher level than what is really comfortable for most people. Your home office should be personalized to your precise needs. Whether you want sleek flush mounts or a statement chandelier, you’ll want to choose lighting that is not overpowering or distracting. Choose a lighting fixture that can create a general canvas of light to make a baseline. It should be a comfortable middle ground that can be supplemented or lowered depending on your daily agenda.

Layering the Home Office Space

The idea behind secondary lighting is to further personalize your home office for exactly how you’d like it to feel and function. For a larger home office with designated areas for different purposes, choose secondary light fixtures that make sense in context. A small seating or waiting area can be more relaxing with floor or table lamps. An additional ceiling light over a meeting table isn’t just practical; a stylish semi flush mount or chandelier is a chance to communicate strength, creativity, or success, etc. Classy, matching sconces either side of your desk add an established, experienced air.

Focus on the Task at Hand

Possibly the most important lighting fixture in your home office provides task lighting. A host of studies have shown that having task lighting in a personal workspace (home office or within a traditional office) can markedly increase concentration and stamina. The key to all the benefits afforded with task lighting lays in the ability to dim or brighten your task light. The flexibility to adjust the lighting to exactly what you need is critical. Adding a dimmable light in your direct working space allows you to switch gears or drill down into a task. Beat back fatigue by bringing the brightness up, or dim it down to move from a high intensity task to a problem solving or idea generating frame of mind.

Your home office should be your ideal workspace. Whether you expect to hold client meetings regularly or plan to make your workspace a completely private sanctuary, the correct lighting not only makes your home office dramatically increase productivity and lessen burnout. By choosing the lighting that fits your business and personal style, you can set the tone to encourage success.