Interior design

Office furniture for small spaces is the interiors trend of 2020, and it’s set to carry over into the New Year

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Aiden Wynn
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Working from home: interiors trends reveal how people's needs for their homes changed during lockdown

With working from home being the norm, interiors trends have evolved around our lives in a similar way. This is how lockdown has changed people’s view of their homes (and what they want them to look like next year).

Now that December has rolled around, it’s natural to want to take a second to look back and reflect on the year that’s passed. 2020, though, has not necessarily been the easiest one to digest. A lot has had to change this year in response to the coronavirus pandemic, and even the smallest parts of people’s everyday lives have been affected by ensuing restrictions.

From altered workout routines to reduced social gatherings, so many unexpected aspects of people’s day-to-day faced abrupt change back in March. One of the most seismic shifts has been in the world of work, with many office workers having spent the vast majority of the year working from home.

Now, taking meetings and dealing with workday stress has to be done from bedrooms and kitchens, and the usual 9-to-5 stint is played out in the same space that you spend your evenings and weekends. Unsurprisingly, this has changed how people view their homes. 

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According to research conducted by estate agent Savills during the first national lockdown, the additional time spent indoors caused people to realise the importance of having a designated workspace in the home, particularly as 49% of respondents anticipate that working from home will continue even after restrictions are eased.

The survey also reveals that “44% of all respondents said a separate work space has assumed greater importance” since restrictions were first introduced, “rising to 61% amongst the under 40s.”

In an ideal world, many would want to move to a place with more rooms in order to incorporate a separate office space, with 42% of respondents under 40 reporting a desire to upsize. But times are tough at the moment for buyers and renters alike, and this isn’t always possible.

So instead, people have been looking for ways to maximise their homes and make the most of the space they do have. And come 2021, it’s looking as though people will continue to shop for functional office furniture that can slot into a small space or be easily packed away. 

A woman working from home
Working from home: stylish office furniture that can be packed into a small space is this year's interiors trend.

Online marketplace Etsy has reviewed our search and buying habits from throughout 2020, and found that, alongside an increase in people looking for creative new hobby ideas and outdoor décor, there was a massive 858% increase in users searching for items to kit out their home offices.

With a 339% increase in searches for foldable desks alone, Etsy predicts that the desire for buying stylish and convenient office furniture will continue into the new year. From storage solutions to compact chairs to room dividers, there are plenty of stylish ways to designate and design an effective working space for the home. 

Stylish office furniture for a small space

  • DaAl's folding desk

    Working from home: DaAl's folding desk
    Working from home: DaAl's folding desk

    A folding desk is the perfect way to turn an area of a room into a temporary office, without having to commit to boxing off space you can’t afford to lose. 

    Shop folding desk at DaAl’s, £46.99.

  • IKEA Burhult floating shelves

    Working from home: interiors trends reveal how people's needs for their homes changed during lockdown
    Working from home: interiors trends reveal how people's needs for their homes changed during lockdown

    Free up space on your desk and elsewhere in your room with these simple and effective shelves, perfect for storing stationary and packing your laptop away at the end of the day. 

    Shop Burhult floating shelves at IKEA, £6. 

  • Lix low steel stool

    Working from home: Lix low steel stool
    Working from home: Lix low steel stool

    Switch out your usual office chair for a stylish stool, which can easily be stored under your desk and out of sight at the end of the day, or used elsewhere in the home. 

    Shop low steel stool at Lix, £28.71.

  • Wayfair colter 3 panel room divider

    Working from home: Colter 3 panel room divider from Wayfair
    Working from home: Colter 3 panel room divider from Wayfair

    If you want to really separate your working day from the rest of your home life, then a room divider is exactly what you need. 

    Shop colter 3 panel room divider from Wayfair, £61.99.

Images: Getty, courtesy of brands

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