Tichenor & Thorp Architects

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Home-Office Decorating Flubs-and How to Fix Them

Go Beyond the Task Light
Natural illumination beats all other types, and when it’s available, the office layout should work around it, said Steve Delfino, vice president of office-furnishings and technology company Teknion. If windows are in short supply, Princeton, N.J., architect Joshua Zinder warned of eyestrain, emphatically cautioning, “A computer monitor does not provide enough light to read by.” Lighting should be adequate and layered. New York designer Andi Pepper advised a combination of overhead lights, table and floor lamps and sconces. “LED lighting, very energy saving, must be carefully selected because it can be eerily blue,” said Los Angeles architect Raun Thorp. Many design pros recommended hanging chandeliers. “They offer warm pools of soft lighting,” said Mr. Delfino.

Concede You’ll Spread Out
Designers noted that despite the digital promise of a paperless world, you need ample surface and storage space. Desk size, said Ms. Thorp, “should be at least the span of your outstretched arms, from fingertip to fingertip.” Atlanta designer Nina Nash recommended building shelves and drawers into closets and finding a buff et or credenza deep enough for a printer and files. The best part is, she said, “it doesn’t look like traditional, boring office furniture.”

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