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Before and After

3 tips for a beautiful, functional home office

Learn how interior design blogger Brepurposed transformed a oddly shaped bedroom nook into a pleasant, productive home workspace.

Desk in a nook with a skylight overhead

Bre Bertolini, the creative force behind the interior decorating blog Brepurposed, chronicles her DIY projects, bringing her modern flair to transitional design. It’s easy to love the Ohio-based blogger’s designs that use soothing, muted blues and sage greens alongside a palette of rich neutrals and organically textured materials.

While many Americans are searching for remote work solutions for the first time in 2020, as a self-employed lifestyle blogger, Bertolini is a seasoned veteran. Without a dedicated room for an office, Bertolini uses a funky corner nook in her bedroom where a vaulted ceiling caught her eye as a perfect space to install a skylight and create a bright, welcoming home workspace. Before the skylight was added the nook lacked energy.

home office desk nook before adding a skylight

As remote work transitions from a short-term fix to a long-term challenge, creating a functional, beautiful workspace at home is more important than ever. Seeking a more productive work from home environment? Consider these three tips from Bertolini’s renovation.

Dedicate a space for working, even if it’s just a corner.

While many people have found themselves creating makeshift offices on the dining room table or living room couch in 2020, Bertolini had already dedicated a bedroom nook to the task. Better for an office than a multifunctional space, this oddly-shaped corner of the bedroom is the perfect size for a desk and doesn’t run the risk of invasion from the rest of the family. Additionally, a separate space prevents work from blurring into leisure, relaxation and rest breaks, which is key in preventing overwork and burnout. Remember, you’re working from home, not sleeping at work.

Dress it up with paint and plants.

With remote work seemingly becoming a long-term affair (rather than the originally anticipated month or two), now may be the time to invest in a proper workstation designed to reduce stress and promote productivity. Make the space feel intentional by simulating a full office, bringing in a desk and ergonomic office chair.

Additional touches, such as painting an accent wall, hanging decorative shelving and adding plants, as Bertolini did for her home workspace nook, may improve the way you approach working from home, too. One study reported that adding plants to “lean” offices could improve quality of life and productivity by 15%. Bertolini’s use of green on the wall she faces while working could also help fuel her creativity and reduce stress.

Learn more about the effects of color on mood.

Amplify natural light.

The benefits of natural light for office work have been studied and reported on for years, showing advantages for both productivity and creativity. One study even reports a boost in physical wellness from natural light, with workers reporting fewer headaches, less eye strain and less drowsiness in daylight office environments.

Bertolini’s workspace had been a dark corner. She added a VELUX Solar Powered Fresh Air Skylight, which lets light flood in over her desk and offers an opportunity to breath fresh air and hear birds chirping outside. After installation, Bertolini is able to back up the natural light research with her own experience, reporting that the skylight lends both a mood and functionality boost to the workspace because it’s bathed in natural daylight.

And since the skylight is outfitted with a remote-controlled room-darkening shade, Bertolini’s bedroom can still be darkened for sleeping.

home office desk nook after adding a skylight

Home office skylight installation cost

Bertolini added a VELUX skylight - size M04 (30 1/16 inches wide by 37 7/8 inches tall) - to her bedroom nook to fully transform it into a home office. The installation cost $3,576 and took a single day. Product and labor costs are outlined below.

  • Skylight cost - Includes one skylight with a solar powered room darkening shade and a flashing kit - $2,076
  • Installation cost - Includes exterior installation and interior finishing - $1,500

Skylight installation cost vary by location, ceiling type (vaulted or flat) and roof pitch. For an estimate on adding skylights to your home, find a VELUX-certified installer near you.

Make working from home work for you.

From bedroom corners to oddly-shaped bonus rooms, remote workers across the country are creatively rethinking what they need to do their jobs well during an unprecedented period of change. If you’re thinking about upgrading your home workspace, schedule a virtual design consultation with VELUX to learn how natural light from above could be part of your design.

Next: 10 Layered bedding looks made better with skylights

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