May 23, 2022

Minimalist Office Design

Minimalist Office Design

Putting some thought into creating a minimalist office design can go a long way in getting you inspired to start your work day, keeping you focused and helping you get the most out of your workspace. 

In this article we will go over understanding your space, explore minimalist office furniture options, wall decor, lighting and desk setup. Consider this your minimalist office design guide!


office chair and desk


Minimalist office design has been a popular workplace design theme for many years and it's no wonder. We find that when our environment is clean, orderly and inspiring, it allows our minds to focus more fully on the task at hand, thus increasing productivity. For those who are still adjusting to working from home, check out our article Home Office Ideas: Sanity Saving Tips.

In The Spruce’s blog discussing minimalist design found here, they lay out a list of defining characteristics found in minimalist spaces. The ones we found most relevant to apply to minimalist office design are: less is more, focus on functionality, clean and simple lines, lack of superfluous decoration, limited color palette, everything has a place and a purpose, use of space and natural light.

With those principles in mind, we hope that this article can provide some direction and inspiration on your mission to design the minimalist office space of your dreams!


Understanding Your Space

Every workspace will have different space constraints and different sets of needs to fulfill. An important step in the conception phase of designing your office space is to do an honest assessment of what you want your office to accomplish for you. Take notes, make sketches and don’t be afraid to think outside the box.


The Space:

Maybe you have the largest corner office in the building or maybe your home office is squeezed into the tiniest corner in your home. Take a step back and assess the space that you are working with. Particularly if you have an entire room at your disposal, you have many layout possibilities, so you will need a clear vision to make the space both functional and intentional. 


The Function:

Every workspace will need to fulfill different types of functions. Here are some questions to consider:

Will you have clients or colleagues visit your office or are you a one man/woman show? Do you need a collaboration area? Would a living room setup make sense for casual meetings? How large do you need your desk space to be for various projects? Do you need to leave room opposite your desk for client seating?

Once you have answered such questions and have an idea of what components you will need to incorporate into your office design, it’s a good idea to sketch out your ideas. 

Here are some office designs and layouts for inspiration…


Multifunctional Office Space

This office has two distinctive areas - the main desk with a client chair and the lounge area for meetings and visitors.


home office


The Solopreneur

If you have an entire room at your disposal for your remote office, you can position your desk in the center of the room to give yourself maximum breathing room and headspace. 


black and white modern office


home office with bookshelf


Collaboration Space

A collaboration area or joint work space can simply be an oversized desk or table large enough for two laptops. 


home office collaboration space


Office in the Bedroom

If you need to incorporate your workspace into your bedroom, find a blank wall with enough room for a desk and chair and try to match to your bedroom’s aesthetic.


white office in bedroom


Getting Creative with Small Spaces

This under the stairs nook is the perfect spot to fit a small desk and chair.


office under staircase


Minimalist Office Furniture Ideas

When choosing your office furniture such as desk, chair, storage cabinets, etc. keep these design elements in mind: straight lines, natural materials, low profile and free of embellishments. 

Something to consider is investing in ergonomic choices for your desk and chair. Shop for a chair with lumbar support (or buy a pillow) and that has adjustable height. Consider a desk that converts to standing or be sure to choose a desk that is the correct height for you to type with your arms at a 90 degree angle. 


natural minimalist office

This all natural office furniture has straight lines, geometric shapes, and a minimal vibe.


modern home office

Ergonomic standing desks and chairs prioritize back health and tend to have a minimal and modern feel.


Minimalist Wall Art

What you put (or don’t put) on your walls is another key element in designing a minimalist office. Particularly if you do not have the ability to look through a window, artwork can improve your mental health and give you something beautiful to look at that can refresh and invigorate your mind, give you a feeling of peace, and help dig you out of a creativity rut. 

Ideally, when your eyes need a break from the computer screen or you are looking for inspiration, you can shift your gaze out a window to a nature filled scene like a park or body of water. If your view more closely resembles a concrete jungle or you have no windows, wall art is the next best thing. Hanging nature photography prints of beautiful natural scenery helps give your mind that therapeutic break it craves throughout a long work day. You may be surprised how gazing at a majestic mountain image or the vast ocean can give you perspective, ground you, and even inspire creativity.


waterfall picture at desk

 Pictured: Ribbons & Veils Fine Art Print


Colors play a huge role in changing the feel of the room. Greens give a restful and refreshing tone. Yellow inspires happiness and creativity. Choose blue tones for a soothing, relaxing mood, a common color scheme in modern coastal decorating.

To compliment the minimal design style of your office, you may want to decorate with abstract art prints or minimal art prints.


Framed nature art above desk

Pictured: Sea of Galilee & Golden Grace Fine Art Prints 


Minimalist Office Lighting

Lighting should not be underestimated. Natural or simulated daylight has a direct positive effect on mood, mental clarity and productivity. 

Ample natural light is ideal during daylight hours. If you are lucky enough to have a sunlit office with plenty of windows, you need only to invest in a simple desk or floor lamp for after the sun goes down and cloudy days.

minimalist office with bright window


For windowless or offices with north/south facing windows, consider installing overhead lighting to offset the lack of natural light. Some options are recessed lighting, track lighting, or other light fixtures that maximize the span of light and be sure to look into full spectrum light bulbs that mimic natural light.

There are some design tricks such as installing mirrors and choosing shiny or lacquered furniture to help bounce light around that we found useful in an article by Apartment Therapy (How to Fake Natural Light).


If you are lucky enough to have lots of natural light, diffusing the light with opaque window treatments will help prevent glare on your computer screen.


sun filled office


This overhead lighting has a simple, minimal aesthetic.

simple office setup with overhead lights


Minimalist Desk Setup

Setting up your desk should be quite straightforward. Remember, you are striving for simplistic, clean and clutter free. Include only what is completely necessary for function.

If you have more relevant supplies for your work, a storage solution is a must to keep the minimal design aesthetic. Look for streamlined cabinets that blend in with the walls or desk. 


modern white built in office cabinets


Minimalist Office Accessories

Though less is more in minimalist design, you still want to add a bit of life to your desk where you spend so many hours each day. Add one or two key items just to bring a bit of personality to your workspace. Pick an item that brings a smile - something that represents a fond memory or a framed picture.

Decorate with grounding elements such as plants or earth-inspired items made from wood or metal.


modern white desk with cherry blossoms


Some thoughtful and intentional planning to design your minimalist office is time well spent. After all, you will be spending a lot of your waking hours in this environment! Creating an attractive, simple and clutter free workspace ensures you will be setting yourself up for success through increased productivity and a positive mental boost. Happy decorating!


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