Chic home office colour schemes for a hardworking space

Looking to create a colourful office space to support your creativity? Here are the best shades to put to work.

A perfect home office colour scheme might not clear your inbox, but why lock yourself away in a dull, uninspiring space? It makes sense that an appealing zone for work or admin can help you to enjoy a productivity boost.  

If you work from home, you’ll know that one of the joys is not enduring  the tedium of impersonal and sterile corporate cubicles. And even if your line of work calls for a non-distracting colour scheme, or your home office is used for tasks other than work, leaning on the right palette to create a calming space can stop your office feeling completely devoid of personality. 

SuperdwellCredit: Superdwell

As with all colour choices, it’s horses for courses. After years of colour experience, you’ll know that a red office will have a different emotional impact to a blue one. But bringing the same deliberate approach to weighing up your home office colour ideas as you do to the tasks you do there, will reward you with a high performing space. 


1. Blue with a touch of grey

The most soothing colour meets the most balanced

SharpsCredit: Sharps

When it comes to office colour schemes, according to a study by the University of British Columbia, blue might just be the king of concentration. But what if you want to ramp up the energy with a bit of contrast? 

Blue and grey – colours that are closely associated with the sky – work famously well together. And what’s more, you can really augment the creativity here, since each of these colours comes in a huge array of shades. With blue you can set the tone with anything from turquoise to royal blue, and with grey, choose from the darkest charcoal to the lightest gossamer. 

The secret to pairing them up in your home office is to match colours with the same tonal quality – as this room styled by Sharps does, using a mid-range blue and grey to creates a perfect balance. 

Colour psychology is always important in the home,” says Rachal Hutcheson, national retail manager at Sharps, and for practical spaces like the home office, it is key to consider the effect colour will have on the room. 

The colour blue tends to be associated with feelings of calmness and tranquillity. When coupled with a complementary hue such as grey, the resulting combination helps to create a space that promotes increased productivity and focus.” 

Victoria Yardley of Victory Colours, agrees, suggesting: “When selecting colours for a home office, it is important to prioritise focus and productivity. I would suggest opting for neutral tones as a base, to promote a serene environment, then add accents of shades like muted blues or greens to stimulate creativity and maintain a balanced, conducive workspace.”

2. All grey

An entirely grey office is anything but boring

Benjamin Moore Metropolitan AF-690,Credit: Benjamin Moore

As we’ve already seen in the emerging home decor colour trends for 2024, light grey is still one of the most compelling colours around.  

It chimes with the current desire to surround ourselves with colours that speak of balance, nature and sustainability.   

If you are considering a grey office but are concerned it might be too staid, think again. This perfectly cheerful office, painted in Benjamin Moore’s Metropolitan, shows that grey doesn’t always have to be formal. It has an easy-going side, too. 

We like how a lighter shade of grey is used on the walls to create a slight contrast between the mid-tone joinery.  

Follow the designer’s lead and make your home office a more pleasant place to be by dotting some artwork around.  

3. Classic navy and white

Try a pairing that evokes a sense of dedication

Pooky Bow Tie desk lamp, £175.jpgCredit: Pooky

Perhaps it’s the nautical undertones that suggests tiptop dedication and hard work, but we think, as home office colour ideas go, navy and white are a pretty impressive pair.  

We like how this room, styled by Pooky, keeps the navy paint at desk level, so that this dark hue doesn’t become too overwhelming. The white above balances light and moody, creating a playful monochrome effect. 

Choose this combination and you’ll also be leading the interior design pack in 2024. Yardley believes that in the coming year, dark blue hues with inky black tones will rule in home decor. “Dark blue has a timeless elegance and adaptability to make it a front runner. It evokes tranquillity, elegance and flair, and it enriches interior spaces.  Coupled with sustainability, its connection to nature aligns with conscientious design choices, promising a year of sophisticated allure.” 

Yardley’s top recommendation for a navy paint to try in your home office is Midnight Ink. 

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Bow Tie Desk Light, Pooky

RRP: £185

Bow Tie Desk Light, Pooky

4. Black and white

A monochrome office is an oasis of calm

SharpsCredit: Sharps

When you are trying to use colour to communicate “crisp” and “uncluttered”, white and black are your key colour allies. 

The look, though simple, is the height of elegance and has the advantage of creating the kind of high contrast effect that is beneficial to ageing eyes. 

As with this Sharp’s home office, a balance of around  50/50 of each colour will make the space feel dynamic, with neither black nor white dominating the design narrative. 

Want to create a perfect black and white palette like this one? Interior designer Emma Hancox of Studio EVH says: “When decorating a black and white office, using various textures is crucial as it helps to create contrast and depth.  

By incorporating textured elements such as a plush rug, wicker accents, and wooden flooring, you can add visual interest and make the space feel cosy and inviting. 

Another good idea to stop the space feeling sterile is to incorporate a smattering of house plants that are safe for pets – these won’t only improve air quality but will make the monochrome home office feel livelier. 


5. All white

For the ultimate neatnik, white takes some beating

SharpsCredit: Sharps

It’s impossible to compile a list of the best home office colour ideas without throwing a spotlight on the all-white work space.  

If you are all about the pristine, hyperorganised aesthetic, white is probably a firm favourite for decking out your home office. 

There is no denying that all-white spaces are the height of calm. This built-in home office by Sharps doubles down on the refinement by ensuring that all elements of the room fit together seamlessly. 

As with the flooring and the boxes on the shelves, wood and wicker are good counterparts to an all-white office, making sure that it has touches that stops it from becoming sterile. 

Pure white paint can be harsh on the eyes in some people, me included. It might even trigger headaches. For a happy medium, consider using an off-white paint that will still achieve the same effect. 

6. Polished grey and black

Create an elegant and timeless home office

SuperdwellCredit: Superdwell

Sold on the monochrome look but not sure black and white is right for you? Grey and black may just offer that slightly more pared back modern look, that takes your home office into the realm of amazing. 

The classic combination of grey and black also makes for a sober and calming atmosphere. So when you’re bringing clients or customers into your office space, they’ll no doubt be at ease when enveloped in these earthy colours. 

We like how in this room styled by Superdwell, the black is limited to the backdrop for the shelving, helping to ensure the room isn’t too dark. It adds a sharp edge of drama without overpowering the space. The pockets of black also help to emphasise the soaring height of the built-in bookcase. 

In love with this cool monochrome look and tempted to try it in your own home office? Try Farrow and Ball colours Dimpse and Railings. 

7. Grounded brown

This grounded hue will be everywhere in 2024

Ligne RosetCredit: Ligne Roset

As we continue to embrace a more sustainable way of life, brown is a colour that’s on the rise. And offices are key places to embrace this eco-friendly movement. For a start, with much of filing now digital, your home office can leave a much smaller carbon footprint. 

Choose from palettes that range from the darkest chocolates to the lightest café au laits.  

We like this deep mustard hue that’s featured in this home office styled by Ligne Roset. It’s sophisticated and grounded all at once. 

Interested in creating a similar look? Try Livingston Gold by Benjamin Moore. 

8. Energising beige and red

Spark your imagination with a refreshing colour combo

NeptuneCredit: Neptune

Neutral colour palettes hold a universal appeal. Though they whisper, they are the bedrock of the latest must-have interior trend – quiet luxury. And world-famous interior designers like Kelly Hoppen have built a career on using them. 

So, what happens when you interrupt the predictability of beige with a vivacious red? You end of with a home office that fosters out of the box creative thinking. 

We like how this home office styled by Neptune feels both traditional and modern all at once. The unexpected colour pairing creates a twist of visual tension that gives a sneak peek into the playful nature of the office’s occupant. 

Want to make sure you get this home office colour idea absolutely, right? Reach for a red-based neutral to be sure it will be compatible with your red accent colour. Farrow and Ball has a number, including ‘Dimity‘, ‘Joa’s White‘ and ‘Oxford Stone‘. 

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Heatherley Desk Organiser with Wycombe Table, Neptune

RRP: £2,100

Heatherley Desk Organiser with Wycombe Table, Neptune

9. Soothing green

Take the stress out of your office design

Benjamin Moore Silver MarlinCredit: Benjamin Moore

You will be familiar with the sense of peace that overcomes you when you go into a forest, field or any predominately green space. Why not borrow nature’s brilliance and paint your home office in this most medicinal of colours? 

Wondering what this gentle green is that is used to soothing effect in this home office? It’s Benjamin Moore’s Silver Marlin. If it doesn’t make you sigh with calm, no colour will. 

Now your pulse has slowed down, it’s time to concentrate. And green has a great reputation for helping you to stay focused. Something that may come in handy if you have to stay alert all day and have already met your caffeine quota.  

And, even if you are a naturally highenergy person like our newsletter editor inchief, Lou Dearden , you’ll find that green is the ultimate backdrop for a meditative work environment. “I have green vases, glasses and office walls, I just love it. It’s calming, but bold, and brings the outdoors in. My home office (aka the converted dining room) is my little zen oasis. And my various Buddhas agree.” 

10. Playful pink and yellow

Give your home office the dopamine decor treatment

Benjamin MooreCredit: Benjamin Moore

Both pink and yellow made our shortlist of the most wanted colours in 2024. Pink is now the unofficial hue of happiness and yellow paint is like sunshine in a can. 

That makes boldly pairing these colours in your home office a triumph of dopamine decor and a direct attack on any boredom that accompanies your least favourite task. 

We like this pairing of ‘Golden Gate and ‘Pan for Gold‘, both by Benjamin Moore.  

For some much-needed added contrast, try painting the desk yellow and the back pink, or vice versa. 


Written by Joy Archer she/her