Want your own home workspace to look like these? We’ve got designer tips to make those stylish office dreams come true.


1. Create an office under the staircase.

With space at a premium in this home in South Surrey, B.C., Ron Kliewer made sure to keep the office both efficient and visually separated from the rest of the home—office spaces have a tendency to get a little untidy. A board-formed concrete wall creates an architectural separation from the front door; custom white oak millwork suspended from the walls keeps the room feeling airy. And for the person working from home that day: a low window showcases the landscape, perfectly positioned for someone who’s sitting down.andrea-mclean-graphic-floor-angle2 copy.CMYK

2. Play with pattern instead of colour. 

To introduce some visual interest into a crisp, clean all-white space—a Vancouver garage that had been converted to a writing and teaching office for the client—designer Andrea McLean bypassed colour and texture in favour of a hit of pattern. The floors are covered in a festive Spanish porcelain tile, an eclectic look that complements the room’s playful character: across from the desk, a wall made up of reclaimed window frames lets in a gorgeous garden view.kelty-design-office-Christy D Swanberg.rev.CMYK

3. Yes, a home office can be fun. 

Ample storage was key for this Calgary home office, as it’s more than just a place to file paperwork—the homeowner runs an accessory-making business and needs room for her crafting supplies. Designer Kelly Taylor kitted out the contemporary space with custom drawers (the lower base cabinets are taller than standard height to perfectly stack wrapping paper; another is specifically designed for hiding away the printer) and touches of bright colour. “The highlight is the lighting: it’s so fun and unexpected,” says Taylor of the Flos Can-Can lamp. “You can see it from the street. It’s designed to catch your attention.”