Since the pandemic began in 2020 many therapists gave up their commercial office spaces and have been providing telehealth primarily from home. While many clinicians started out in the corner of their bedroom or working from the dining room table, therapists quickly realized that having a properly set up and nicely decorated home office can add a lot of comfort and happiness to the daily work routine.
I turned my dining room into a home office with the help of designer Lisa Baker. Here is what the room looked like with the former owner’s furniture when it was functioning as a dining room:
As you can see the light fixture was dated (likely original to the house when it was built 30 years ago), the wall below the chair rail was painted navy blue, and there was an opening in the wall to the main hallway so there was no way to close off the room from the rest of the house.
And here are some of the “after” pictures!
Here is what we did to turn this dated dining room into an updated home office!
- A carpenter installed french doors on the opening to the hallway so the room could be closed off from the rest of the house (still doesn’t keep the kids from making faces through the windows, though).
- Painted the trim, below the chair rail and all of the windows, doors, etc. “Pure White” by Sherwin Williams
- Painted the wall above the chair rail “Quietude” by Sherwin Williams
- Replaced the light fixture, bonus was the light was already on a dimmer!
- Removed the panels above the windows and installed new curtain rods and curtain panels.
And of course, I got new office furniture and decor so it functions as a home office. Lisa the designer mixed some higher quality, more expensive furniture like the desk and the filing cabinet, with some lower cost pieces like the bookshelves and the side tables to keep the overall budget in check.
We chose to position the desk in the center of the room because the light fixture was already there and it allowed the bookshelves and the art on the wall to become the backdrop for zoom calls. It always looks professional and I am ready at a moment’s notice for a video call.
There is plenty of room to show off my personality and store things I need on a regular basis with all of the room on the bookshelves. Many of the items on the bookshelves are business books I already had that made sense to keep in the office as well as other decor items I had in my house. A few other items like the large white and gold “A” I got from the “At Home” store. I organized the books by color to make it more pleasing to the eye.
The filing cabinet is a great spot for my printer and I found this cute ribbon board where I put notes or pictures that make me happy.
I got these fun, modern pictures and framed them myself. Art is another great way to show off your personality and look at something you enjoy every day.
There was enough space in this 13 foot x 13 foot room to have an armchair and a side table tucked into the corner. I love this chair for reading! I also added the storage cabinet. Although it is small, it keeps office supplies like ink cartridges, tape, spare notebooks, etc. that I couldn’t fit in the drawer in the desk.
I love my home office! We don’t miss having a dining room at all. I like having a space that is all my own and when I am done for the day I shut the doors and turn off the light which helps me to separate work from home life.
Are you ready to have your own professionally designed home office? Click here to see different styles of boards that you can purchase with all of the links to put together your own polished, professional looking space, including the home office featured in this blog post!
Alison Pidgeon, LPC is a counselor, serial entrepreneur and lover of all things interior design. She started Move Forward Counseling LLC in 2015 in Lancaster, PA and designed many office spaces as her private practice grew.