Despite what some interior decorators may tell you, home office storage solutions are not a one-size-fits-all category. Do you have enough documents to fill an entire file cabinet, or is all of your work stored right on your desktop? To make your home office fit your exact needs, you need to figure out your work style. Use these home office storage ideas to figure out your details, and rejoice in the bliss of an organized work space that is perfect for you.
Desktop Document Storage
It happens to everyone; a single pile of papers becomes an overflowing stack that is solved easily by dumping in a nearby drawer. The out-of-sight, out-of-mind mentality helps for a few minutes – but this can kill productivity in the long run. Instead of casting your documents to the depths of a filing cabinet, use desktop document trays or wall-mounted file organizers to hold papers that need to be processed.
Use separate folders with your most necessary labels, such as “Current” and “To Process.” Keeping a small – but efficient – labeling system ensures that you know where every item is at all times. Be sure you keep the organizer in a highly visible area, and choose an appropriate size storage piece depending on how many papers you have to manage – whether it be a small file basket, folder rack or larger upright file holder.
Home Office Storage Boxes
A cluttered environment can eliminate your productivity and detract from the visual appeal of your office refuge. Make use of labeled storage boxes to keep cords, electronics and office supplies in their set places, and go for boxes that are stackable to make organization a breeze.
You can also purchase the same brand of boxes in multiple shapes and sizes; the different variations add an aesthetic effect while maintaining a clean composition. When it comes to color, choose just one or two shades to complement your decor. Neutral colors like beige and white create a clean look, but a single pop of color like blue, sea green or orange helps create a positive work environment.
In and Out Boxes
If you are a frequent user of paper-based communication, then you need a dedicated space for both incoming and outgoing documents. Without a defined location, these important documents can get lost, scattered or sent to the wrong location.
Rather than settling for boring file boxes, choose bright-colored mail sorters or repurpose old toast racks and vintage napkin holders. Just attach the appropriate labels to complete your unique yet functional in and out boxes. You can also use paint or cover two old drawers in scrapbooking paper to match your office décor and add a rustic look to your home office. The best place for your boxes is a high-traffic area for easy circulation, whether it be your desk or a shelf close to the door.
Not all home offices are made equal. A smaller office space doesn’t mean it shouldn’t get a large amount of attention; it actually needs more love in regards to creative storage solutions. For a home office that more closely resembles a closet than a workspace, look for a desk that doubles as a storage solution. Buy a desk with rows of cubbies, drawers or bookshelves in place of legs, or go for a table top that lifts to reveal a secret storage area. These extra desk options utilize your unused, empty spaces, giving you a perfect place to move your messy piles from your open area.
Bulky items such as storage boxes don’t need to be out in the open; these can be placed away from your main work area and accessed only when needed. In this case, spacious box shelves are your best friends. Choose or build shelves in different shapes, sizes and depths for visual Appeal, but keep them at an accessible height.
For storing your smaller odds and ends, install flat shelves equipped with magnetic strips for paper clips, mini compartments for smaller items, and hangers for your personal accessories. Matching the shelves with your exact purpose adds short-term productivity that adds up in the long run.
It never fails that stray manuals, magazines and books creep onto your desk or shelves – where they do not belong. Rustic wicker baskets on the floor or shelves are a great place to store these items in your home office. Classic dried-grass baskets complement most office styles, but you can also cover or line your baskets in colorful fabric to match your funkier decor.
For lighter file loads, opt for flat-bottomed tote bags with handles for quick transportation to and from your home office. Give your storage baskets a home on low shelves or tucked into the lowest cubbies of your desk for easy accessibility.
Choosing a variety of hanging compartments, floor boxes and cabinets helps you make the most of your office storage space without resorting to guilt-ridden junk drawers. Even the smallest pen holder goes a long way in de-cluttering a claustrophobic office, so don’t procrastinate. Use smart storage solutions to create an organized environment that takes the stress out of your office hours.
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