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Small Home Office Redesign

Updated: Aug 29, 2023

Working 8 to 10 hours a day in a very small, overcrowded home office space, devoid of windows got to me. Having the option to go into my corporate office a couple times a week gave me some relief but really didn't solve the bigger issue. I was starting to feel claustrophobic every day and felt anxiety creeping in.

The space was the only area I could put a huge Ikea cabinet I had in my previous kitchen. It was much needed storage and I couldn't put it anywhere else in the condo. It fit perfectly but the downside was that this area was also where my office needed to go. So I ended up in a space where I could touch walls or the cabinet on all sides when I was sitting at my desk. The space was technically functional, just way, way too small.

small home office
Small Home Office Before

We started with the herculean task of moving everything out of this space, including that massive cabinet which we barely got in there in the first place. The condo was completely upended for a weekend.

When we surveyed the space and task at hand we realized the cabinet was in fact two pieces that were combined to make the one unit. This was a huge discovery because it meant we could separate the pieces and reasonably move them into our second bedroom without over cluttering that space. This is what made the office redesign even feasible. When planning to move any furniture around in a small space, there are a few steps you should take to avoid potential headaches.


Home Office Space Planning Tips

Here are a few tips on how to plan out small spaces.

Measure everything! If you're planning furniture placement it's important to understand how the pieces will fit into your space. I measure the items and use painter's tape to then lay them out on the floor. This gives me a super clear view of how much space that item will take up in the room. Also remember to measure door openings to ensure you'll be able to move the item through the door without issue.

Plan for good traffic flow. Understand how people will move through the space and ensure you have good clearance. This goes for opening doors and drawers and ensuring there's no blocks to movement in the space. Don't forget safety. Is it safe to move around the object in the dark or if there's an emergency. These are important considerations as well.

Design based on utility first. How will you use the space you're planning? When it comes to an office, what will you need handy or within arms reach? Think about how you use the space to ensure it's functional before you worry about the finishing design and decor touches.


Once we took the cabinet apart, we moved it out of the home office space. This immediately allowed me to reposition the desk on the far wall. Not only did I now have a reasonable area to work with, everyone else got a bit of a break from my constant Teams meetings. Adding a larger, pretty rug also allowed for some sound absorption, and made the office space less echoey. I opted for a new, more streamlined office chair without arms. It could easily tuck in under my desk for further space saving.

small home office desk and storage solutions
Furniture Placement in a small home office

With the desk in place I realized I had additional room to add more office storage. I purchased this cart from Ikea and it fit perfectly plus gave me a ton more storage for other items I had in boxes but would use if they were out and available. These included crafting supplies, my cricut joy machine and materials, greeting cards and other office stationery.

Not only did I benefit from the extra breathing room, but the space was so much prettier and I actually enjoyed being in my home office for the first time in months. No more anxiety. The moral of this post is really to look at your space with a fresh set of eyes. There's always a solution.

small home office redesign
Small Home Office After

Small Home Office Furniture and Decor Sources:

Desk and rolling file storage: Ikea

Office Chair: Amazon

Rug: Wayfair

Clear file storage: Indigo

Mirror: old one from Pier One Imports

Painting on desk: Papaya Art

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