Top 70 Best Modern Home Office Design Ideas – Contemporary Working Spaces
Not everyone makes the grueling morning commute to their place of work; for many of us, the office is just down the hall.
More people than ever are discovering the benefits—and challenges—of working from home. Whether you are creating your first modern home office or remodeling your existing office decor, your work zone should reflect your own personal style. Modern home offices can be as sleek or cozy as you desire, even while capturing the best of contemporary design.
Creating a stylish home office involves choosing a dedicated space and filling it with practical, comfortable, and aesthetically pleasing office features. From floor to ceiling, every part of your office should promote maximum productivity and functionality. By creating a custom space designed to meet your specific needs, “going” to work each day becomes a little easier.
1. Modern Home Office Ideas for Spare Rooms and Shared Spaces
If your home includes a guest bedroom or another space that’s under-utilized, it might be a perfect location for your new home office. Many modern homes are designed with nooks in the dining room, living room, or master suite that can be easily transformed into a shared-space office. A long, floating shelf can become a desktop when flanked by a comfortable office chair. Even a living room corner can become a work zone with the addition of a small desk and chair.
Naturally, a guest room is an ideal office location because it likely only serves as a sleeping zone a few days or weeks each year. A wall-mounted Murphy bed is great if you want to stick to minimalist design because it hides the bed behind closed doors, eliminating visual clutter.
Shelving in a shared space can serve a dual purpose: Storing your office necessities as well as the family’s books and other objects everyone uses. Maintaining a simple color palette is essential for modern design and crucial in shared spaces where it prevents your office area from becoming the room’s focal point.
2. Modern Home Office Ideas for a Dedicated Space
If you have the luxury of a separate room to contain your home office space, you have every teleworkers’ dream situation. The perfect modern home office has a door that you can close off to the rest of the home for maximum privacy and productivity. Design inspiration for your worktime getaway can come from anywhere, including a favorite color or style of furniture.
Because exposure to natural light increases productivity, try to arrange the office décor so that you have an unobstructed view through the window. If you’re lucky enough to have huge windows that resemble glass walls, make the most of this dramatic feature. Keep window treatments simple, so as not to detract from the room’s focal point.
When you have a separate office room, it should be easy to incorporate plenty of storage into your design. Make the most of shelves, cabinets, bins, and baskets to keep everything neatly out of sight when not in use. Remember that accent pieces should be simple in a modern space. Look for simple lines and geometric shapes when choosing lamps, artwork, and other accents.
Tile, laminate, and wooden flooring are all good choices for a modern home office. Sleek and shiny, an impressive finish on the floor adds polish to the room. Soften the floor with an area rug scaled to fit the space—and choose a material that will feel luxurious under bare feet on lazier days at the office. Note that the ceiling is also a good area to add a punch of black or another anchoring color, especially if you have tray or coffered ceilings that demand a bit more attention.
3. Modern Home Office Shelving Ideas
At least one shelf is a must in every home office. In small office nooks, shelving is necessary for enough storage space for your documents and supplies. Even if you have a whole room for your office, shelves maximize storage and enhance the visual appeal of your space. Check out these floor to ceiling bookshelf ideas for more inspiration.
It’s fine for a modern office to include features that hearken back to traditional design elements. Simple coffered panels and floor to ceiling shelves are reminiscent of centuries past, but can be structured in a way that projects contemporary style. An eclectic combination of arched built-in shelves, a modern desk, and a metal pendant light can all come together into an inviting modern workspace. For a truly eye-catching feature, cover the wall behind your shelves in mosaic tile, mirrored panels, patterned wallpaper, or a contrasting paint color.
Floating shelves are a hallmark of midcentury, Scandinavian, and contemporary design. As the name indicates, these shelves appear to float along the wall, with no visible hardware holding them up. Watch the following video to learn how to make simple floating shelves for your office retreat.
4. Desk and Table Lamp Ideas for Modern Home Offices
A great desk lamp is helpful on just about any work surface. This special type of light fixture features a lamp on the end of a flexible arm, allowing you to position the beam of light exactly where you need it. Desk lamps can stand directly on the desktop, sit on the floor, or be mounted to the wall. These simple lamps can be found in a variety of finishes, including chrome, brass, black, and white.
A table lamp is another option for your desk and casts a softer, more diffused light than a desk lamp’s concentrated beam. Because table lamps come in an unlimited range of sizes, colors, and designs, your desk lamp can be a special accent piece. If your overall color scheme centers around shades of gray, add a simple lampshade in soft peach or pale gold to soften the lines and corners of your modern office.
For other lighting ideas, check out the Top 60 Best Track Lighting Ideas.
5. Modern Desk Ideas
Modern desks are usually simple and angular, but that doesn’t mean they have to be boring. Whether you need a conference table-sized desk or simply require a small writing desk, be sure to look for styles true to your personal voice. For example, if nature inspires your modern space, look for an Asian-inspired floating desk that seems to hover over a large river stone. A midcentury modern home office would look best with the straight lines and curved edges of a 1960s-era ad executive’s desk.
Wood, metal, stone, and laminate desks are all equally at home in a modern office space. As with shelving, floating desks will always broadcast a modern vibe. A simple floating plank can be anchored as a corner desk, or mounted in front of a huge picture window. Pairing a wood desktop with metal legs is another popular combination in modern interior design.
Don’t rule out the possibility of a built-in desk. Here’s the 50 Best Built In Desk Ideas.
6. Small Modern Home Office Ideas
Perhaps the most important factor to remember in turning a small space into a home office is to keep the furniture sizes to scale. You don’t want to overwhelm the space with an oversized desk or unnecessary guest seating. As always, modern or minimalist doesn’t equal boring. In fact, the smaller the area you have for an office, the more you can use certain elements to make it special.
Take advantage of every inch of vertical space by installing cabinets and shelves to fit. Wooden planks or beams along the ceiling help draw the eye up in small areas with high ceilings. If you don’t have a lot of room for artwork or other decorative accents, use a large-scale geometric wallpaper on the ceiling and install a dramatic modern light fixture.
If you’ve got real space constraints, check out these 40 Ideas for Closet Offices.
7. File Cabinets and Storage Ideas for Modern Home Offices
Storage might be at a premium if your modern home office is small. Keep file cabinets tucked away under your desk or hidden inside a credenza or closet. If you have deep built-in shelves, you can install file cabinet drawers in place of some of the lower shelves.
A basket on the floor can hold blueprints or other large paper documents and look attractive at the same time. Get double duty out of an ottoman or bench by choosing one with a lid that lifts off for hidden storage inside. While a lack of clutter is necessary in modern design, you can use a simple box or set of bins on your desk to hold papers or office supplies.
8. Sleek Seating Ideas for Modern Home Offices
A dedicated home office isn’t complete without a stylish, ergonomic office chair. While a love of contemporary design may narrow your choices in office furniture, never sacrifice comfort for style. If you become uncomfortable at your desk within an hour of settling in, your production will suffer.
High-tech modern office chair options abound. Look for a chair that has:
- Armrests that can be adjusted in height, width, and pivot.
- A flexible backrest that supports and conforms to the shape and movement of your back.
- A gliding mechanism that slides the seat forward as you recline.
- An adjustable seat height.
- Wheels that roll smoothly.
Other chairs in your office can break from the sleek lines and angles common to modern design. From the curves of an egg chair or a classic Eames, to the tufted surface of a Barcelona chair, these modern pieces of furniture can become the room’s main focal point.
9. Black and White Modern Home Office Ideas
The clean simplicity of black and white is always at home in a modern office. Use an equal balance of black and white, or focus more heavily on one color with accents of the other. When your color palette is this basic, feel free to coffer the ceiling, buy a dramatic chair, or center the room around one spectacular piece of art.
Luxurious fabrics also stand out well in simple black and white spaces. Try a velvet-upholstered sofa or a thick fur rug in shades of gray. An elaborate glass pendant light makes a dramatic focal point in your yin-and-yang office. Don’t be afraid to display a wooden bowl or other natural accents that remind you of your favorite places.
Modern Home Office FAQs
How can I make my tiny modern office space feel larger?
One of the beautiful things about modern design is how its minimalism helps small spaces feel larger. However, to achieve this feeling of openness, you must choose your furniture carefully and guard against clutter with an almost militant passion. Buy a desk with slim legs and a chair with a mesh back, to provide more visual space in the room. If you need guest seating, choose one or two airily-designed chairs instead of a sofa.
Remember the value of negative space in both art and interior design—empty areas are something to embrace. Store office supplies inside drawers instead of on your desktop. Keep your walls as clear as possible, choosing one impressively-framed painting or photograph. Hang thin modern blinds or sheer panels on your windows.
Everyone says to reserve your bedroom for sleeping, but the only free corner I have to create an office is in my master bedroom. Is it really that bad to work and rest in the same room?
While it is important to divide your home into work, rest, and play zones, it’s not always practical to keep everything so clearly separated. If you need to work from home, it’s better to create a designated office space in your bedroom than to do without a home office at all. Follow these guidelines to help your mind shift more easily between work and bedtime.
- Avoid working in bed. Sit at your desk whenever you’re on the clock.
- Although wearing pajamas is one of the bonuses of teleworking, getting dressed in the morning helps your mind know it’s time to work.
- When you’re finished working, put everything away. Out of sight is out of mind. For the same reason, try to situate your corner office where you can’t see it while lying in bed.
- Use smart light bulbs in your task lighting fixtures. These LED lights allow you to choose a bright light temperature for work time and a more relaxing temperature when you’re off the clock.
- End your work day well before bedtime. Spend the rest of the day in other rooms or away from home.
Top 29 Best Watches Under $500 For Men
With cellphones so ubiquitous, your watch choice can be less about telling time and more about personal style. However, a watch is not ‘just’ a watch. For example, the vast majority are made for right-handed people, but a select few cater to the lefties among us. There is a wide range in functionality and size.
The wristwatch is also one of the few socially acceptable accessories for men, so why not have a small selection? If you’re not cashing a CEO’s paycheck just yet, here are the top 28 most handsome watches for men that retail for under $500.
Got a bigger budget? Then check out our guide to the best men’s watches under $1000 instead.
Top 29 Best Watches Under $500 For Men
1. Tommy Hilfiger Stainless Steel Men’s Watch
If you like the feel of a pliable, non-metal band but aren’t comfortable with genuine leather, this watch comes equipped with a handsome synthetic band. At 46mm in diameter, this watch is perfect for men of smaller stature, as it will not overpower your hand or make it look like you’re wearing your father’s watch. With bold Arabic numerals, a stainless steel case, and classic styling, this watch is an outstanding choice for an everyday watch and the man on a budget.
2. Nordgreen Pioneer – Black Dial
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Not everyone has an endless amount of cash to drop on a luxury timepiece. If you’re money-conscious but want something high-end, then why not consider the Nordgreen Pioneer.
An inspired take on a classic Chronograph, Nordgreen celebrates the Danish with what they call a timepiece “that captures the sustainable future.” Available in various dial colors from blue, black, and white. There’s even the choice of three case colors – gunmetal, silver, and rose gold. A perfect addition to the collection of any watch enthusiast.
3. Fossil Grant Brown Leather Watch
This lovely offering by Fossil features slim Roman numeral hour markers and delicate cut-out hands. The casing is stainless steel and is water-resistant to 165 feet, making it a great dive watch. The band is made of supple, soft calfskin leather and uses a buckle closure.
Of course, this timepiece also comes with the generous 11-year warranty and it’s own fun tin. This watch oozes class and is great for nearly every occasion in your life.
4. Citizen Sport Stainless Steel Men’s Watch With Brown Leather Band
If you don’t want to deal with changing out a battery in a digital watch, this watch is powered by either natural or indoor lighting. The mineral crystal face and stainless steel case make this watch water-resistant to 330 feet, making it a great choice for swimmers and snorkelers.
Handsome and utilitarian, this is a great watch for everyday wear. It’s one of the best watches for men who are always on the go.
5. Fossil Men’s Machine Chronograph Silicone Watch
This watch was designed with the active man in mind. The knurled silicone band stands up to sweat and oils without issue, and the timepiece itself is water-resistant to 165 feet.
The patterned bezel and quality craftsmanship of the black dial is excellent, as is to be expected from a Fossil watch. It even comes in the iconic and collectible tin!
6. Citizen Men’s Eco-Drive Watch
This men’s watch features Japanese quartz movement that charges itself indoors or out when exposed to light, making it a great choice for those who don’t want to change out the battery too often. The stitched canvas strap is soft against your skin and will wick away moisture, while the mineral crystal face stands up to the rigors of your everyday life.
Water-resistant to 330 feet, this dive watch is a classic and simple design you’ll be proud of for years to come.
7. Invicta Pro Diver Chronograph Men’s Watch
Another gorgeous offering by Invicta, this watch features a bold design with a slightly nautical feel to it. It will look at home whether you’re wearing a business suit or are going for a dive of less than 660 feet. This piece is also covered by a one-year warranty as a matter of course. The luminosity feature and magnified date window make it a great choice if you work or play in low light.
If you want something that looks like a Tag Heuer but without the luxury watch brand price tag, this is a good option!
8. Casio Edifice Multi-Function Men’s Watch
This watch has three sub-dials for 12 hour, 60 minute and 60-second displays, in addition to the standard time. It also features a fold-over, push-down clasp on the stainless strap, keeping it secure throughout your activities. If you’re looking for a classy timepiece that shrieks sophistication, this is a great choice.
9. Fossil Machine Three Hand Stainless Steel Men’s Watch
This quality watch is a chameleon piece. It looks at home as a dress watch riding below the cuff of your best suit, and it also looks great paired with jeans and a t-shirt. Backed by Fossil’s 11-year warranty as a matter of course and beautifully crafted, this smoke-colored piece is guaranteed to become the go-to accessory for nearly every occasion.
10. MVMT Watches Black Face Men’s Watch
If you like the look of a simple watch, this minimalist offering from MVMT is right up your alley. With just a plain black face, tick marks to denote the hours and a single date window, there is nothing overdone or extravagant about this design. The is understated and suited to the simple design. It’s definitely a classy, low-key piece for the budget-conscious.
11. Timex Weekender Watch
If you’re looking for a fun watch to pair with casual outfits, this is a great option. The band is blue and yellow woven nylon, and the face features both civilian and military timekeeping. An Indiglo night light is also included. This watch is water-resistant to 99 feet, meaning it can withstand splashes of water or exposure to rain but you won’t want to submerge it.
12. PUMA Ultrasize Black Sport Men’s Watch
Boasting a 50mm diameter, this piece is perfect for the large-framed man or one who likes to wear his accessories oversized. A true fashion statement, this sports watch comes in eight different colors schemes to match your favorite hues.
Do be aware, however, that the dial knob is configure for left-handed men!
13. Timex Easy Reader Men’s Watch
Another dress watch designed with the older gentleman in mind, this watch features a white dial with generously sized numerals that do not appear comical to the casual observer.
It’s also an excellent choice if you take your contacts out at night and still want to be able to check the time. With classic lines and a simple white face, the watch would not be out of place at any casual gathering. It comes with Timex’s one-year warranty at no additional charge.
14. Fossil Nate Men’s Chronograph Watch
For men who like a more gritty, industrial feel to their accessories, this Fossil watch is right on point. The bezel is gear-edged and the face is utilitarian black and gray. Water-resistant to 165 feet, this watch is a great choice if you like your adornments to be understated yet add visual interest.
It’s definitely a stand-out piece, for those who would take notice!
15. Timex Expedition Field Chronograph Men’s Watch
Featuring an indigo night light, tachymeter, a date window and a buckle closure, this watch is perfect for men who like to work or play outdoors. It is also water-resistant to 330 feet, making it a great choice for snorkeling or swimming.
You won’t want to wear it for diving, however. With classic, black styling and a genuine crystal face, this is a timepiece that will stand the test of time in both form and function.
16. Seiko 5 Automatic Stainless Steel Men’s Watch
This Seiko automatic watch has all the bells and whistles you need, but presents it all in a plain and strikingly attractive manner. It features a date window in either English or Spanish, sword-shaped hands, a sweeping second hand and a mineral dial window. This is a great option for the man on the go. The canvas strap can be removed and hand-washed if sweat or other odors become an issue.
This watch is not water-resistant, so you’ll only want to wear it when you won’t be popping by the pool for a swim!
17. Invicta Pro Diver Collection Silver-Tone Men’s Watch
For those who prefer an all-metal timepiece, the stainless steel Invicta fits the bill nicely. It has a similar aesthetic to a Tag Heuer watch, but at a more affordable price. Equipped with a unilateral bezel and removable links, the band can be customized to fit your wrist perfectly. The face is flame fusion crystal and features a magnifier to highlight the date window.
It’s also water-resistant to 660 feet. If you’re looking for a gorgeous watch that stands up to an active lifestyle, this is an excellent choice.
18. Seiko Men’s Adventure-Solar Classic Casual Watch
This Seiko watch derives its power from either natural or indoor light and can withstand water depths of up to 330 feet. The supple brown leather strap and timeless brushed steel give this piece an attractive look, and the alarm chronograph is easy to set.
If you’re looking for a watch that can serve as a backup for your wake-up call while traveling, stand up to the elements and look awesome, this casual wrist watch is a winner.
19. Nautica Men’s Stainless Steel Watch with Blue Resin Band
Featuring a plethora of options and a smart, snappy style, this a great casual watch with a eye-catching blue dial. The hardy resin band is adjustable, and the face is protected by a mineral window. Whether for work or play, this bold blue design is handsome and substantial on the wrist. It comes with Nautica’s five-year warranty at no additional charge.
20. Citizen Sport Men’s Stainless Steel Watch with Black Leather Band
The black, red and white face of this piece eschews the traditional two-tone color scheme so often employed in other watches, and the contrasting stitching on the band adds creative flair. It comes backed by Citizen’s five-year warranty and will compliment any casual outfit.
21. Alessi Tic15 Analog Display Analog Quartz Black Men’s Watch
Another not-quite-round offering on our list, the curved square casing of this piece gives it instant visual appeal. Sleek and clean, this unfussy design will be a compliment to almost any occasion. It has quartz movement and is water-resistant to 99 feet, making it a great choice for everyday wear.
22. Invicta 1517 I Force Collection Watch
Another on our list designed for left-handed men, this watch is something special. Water-resistant to 330 feet and featuring oversize stenciled numbers and a sub dial, this watch is great for any casual outfit. The cloth band is extremely durable and stands up to dirt, sweat and grime.
If you lead an active lifestyle, this watch will be right at home in your collection.
23. TRIWA Blue Steel Nevil Canvas Watch
This watch comes in a whopping 14 color variations, all of them beautiful. You may decide to add more than one to your collection!
Designed in Sweden, this watch features Japanese quartz movement, a stainless steel casing and a strap made from Tärnsjö organic leather. TRIWA, which stands for Transforming the Industry of Watches, believes in the artistry of fine jewelry and it shows in their product.
24. Victorinox Swiss Army Alliance Watch
Another fine dress watch from the makers of the Swiss Army knife, this watch is emblazoned with the internally recognized cross and shield emblem. It has no sub-dials, tachymeter or other add-ons to detract from its simple and appealing style.
This watch will be at home with all but the most formal of outfits and carries a two-year warranty.
25. Ingersoll Automatic Stainless Steel Bull Run Watch
Again, Ingersoll remakes the classics and brings them into the present day. With a highly polished stainless steel casing, two sub-dials, a date aperture and arrow-shaped hands, this quartz watch is beautiful.
The band features contrasting stitching on the fine-grain leather, adding depth and detail to the workmanship. This watch will compliment any casual occasion and can be relied upon for years to come.
26. Tissot Quickster Chronograph Black Leather Men’s Watch
Made with scratch-resistant sapphire crystal and Swiss automatic movement, this watch is a smart and utilitarian choice. If you’re looking for a solid Swiss watch that isn’t flashy, this is an excellent option. It’s also guaranteed for two years.
27. Seiko Sport Solar Men’s Beige Watch
Are you getting tired of squinting down at your watch or holding it closer and closer to your face? Don’t worry, we all get a bit nearsighted with age, especially over the age of 40.
If you’re not quite ready for reading glasses or a comically huge watch, this is a great choice from Seiko. The numerals, indices and luminous hands stand out in stark white against a black background, and the numerals are generous in size. It’s a perfect casual watch for the older gentleman.
28. Seiko Men’s 5 Watch Blue Canvas Band
This simple and affordable watch has a clean, crisp aesthetic to it and doesn’t bog down its design with a ton of bells and whistles. It’s time and date, end of.
If you want a watch for casual wear, this Seiko is a shoo-in. The band is forgiving and comfortable against your wrist, and it’s blue color will likely compliment your existing wardrobe. The price is also extremely affordable.
29. Tommy Hilfiger Men’s Stainless Steel Watch With Brown Leather Band
Featuring the Hilfiger logo at the three o’clock position, this wrist watch is a statement piece. It is a bright, shiny stainless steel work of art that you’ll be proud to wear at all but the most stuffy of workplaces. The calfskin leather band uses a buckle closure and the date window is beside the logo at three o’clock.
If you’re a fan of Tommy clothing, cologne or luggage, you can complete your look with this stunning accessory.