Home office storage ideas for a space that’s functional and pretty

From small home offices to multifunctional areas, these storage ideas provide something for every space.

Though our home offices are primarily a place to work, or enjoy hobbies in – be it knitting, reading or writing – planning in adequate storage for all the paraphernalia that comes with these activities is just as vital as our desk setup, if not more so.

Home offices tend to be places where we keep much of our household clutter, be it books, photographs or board games, as well as our work essentials, such as paperwork or stationery. And all of this “stuff” needs a place to live. If you don’t have adequate storage for these items, your home office can easily become a cluttered mess, which certainly isn’t conducive to a calm space to create in.

SECOND NATURE Belsay Home Office in Dove GreyCredit: Second Nature

Conversely, good storage can make using your home office completely effortless, whether you’re working, hunting down an old contract or looking for your watercolour pad. So, if you’re taking some time to plan out your ideal home office storage ideas, here are a couple of the best options for every home – whether you’re creating a new home office space, revitalising an existing room, or trying to make a small office area work better for you.


1. Choose rolling storage carts for multifunctional spaces

They can be wheeled away as you change tasks

Student bedroom with desk and rolling cart storageCredit: Dunelm

Not everyone is lucky enough to have their office space in a separate room – and in this case, sorting out adequate storage that doesn’t get in the way can feel tricky. However, Melissa Denham, interior design expert from Hammonds Furniture explains that there is an easy solution.

“If your room is a home office by day and a living room by night, you can help to separate the two with the use of moveable office furniture and storage carts,” she explains. “During the day, you can keep the carts close to or under your desk for easy use but, when the time arrives to clock off, they can be moved under the stairs or into cupboards to keep them out of the way.”

Even better are wheeled storage units, for super-easy transportation through your home.

Featured product

Grey 3 Tier Metal Trolley, Dunelm

RRP: £22

Grey 3 Tier Metal Trolley, Dunelm

2. Use floor-to-ceiling storage in smaller spaces

In this case, more furniture can make a room feel bigger

Sharps Manhattan Office in White in attic roomCredit: Sharps

Home offices are commonly created within box rooms, which is sensible. But this limited space can make storage harder to plan. As such, Denham suggests being clever about utilising the options available to you. “When floor and wall space is tight, you’re going to want to take advantage of the height of your room to maximise storage for your home office,” she says.

Simon Glanville, managing director of A Place For Everything, shares that floor-to-ceiling units are a great way to do just this. “Installing shelves, bookcases or cabinets that extend all the way up to the ceiling is a great way to maximise storage – and it will also create a sense of height in your space.

“Just be sure to securely install your shelves or hooks at a height that’s still easy for you to access,” he warns.

3. Hidden vs open storage

A mix of the two is best

Sharps, Milan Living Room in Midnight Blue, from £2,000Credit: Sharps

A combination of closed-door storage solutions and open storage in your home office can be seriously helpful – it needn’t be either/or. Sophie Devonald, designer at Crown Imperial says: “Mixing and matching open and closed cabinetry offers you a design-led feel, coupled with quick access to daily office essentials.”

A mix can be ideal for storing both prettier-looking items and your duller office essentials. Sophie Clemson, design director and co-founder of The Living House says: “Bookcases are functional for storage to hide everything away, but they can also be used to display accessories to bring some life to the room.”

Storage hidden behind doors is also a logical choice for those wanting to stash away smaller, hobby-related items. “Choose a bookcase with storage cupboards to hide away any board games or art and crafts hobbies,” Clemson suggests. On the other hand, Devonald insists that open storage can be practical for office supplies: “Open storage may be more useful for those who need constant access to folders or papers.”

4. Get built-in bespoke units if possible

This guarantees that space is used effectively

Home office with built in green desk and cube bookcasesCredit: Symphony Group

If you’re designing (or redesigning) your home office from scratch and have the funds to spare, consider the wonder of built-in units for maximum home office storage potential. Denham says: “Built-in cupboards spanning the length of the room can give large spaces what feels like acres of storage!”

If you can afford to get this made bespoke, do so – not only will this mean you can utilise every inch of the room, but also it will give your home office a much more polished look, to have furniture fitted to your exact specifications.

And if you’re lucky enough to have them, make use of any alcoves for built-in storage units too. “Many people think of alcoves as wasted space in their homes, but often these nooks and crannies are just ideal for adding built-in storage, especially in smaller homes,” Denham says.


5. Pinboards & peg boards are ideal for stationery storage

Affordable wall storage can make all the difference

Green home office with desk and peg boardCredit: The Living House

In any home office, getting creative with your wall space is also important – and converse to what you may think, peg boards or pin boards can be a great way of storing office stationery.

“If you don’t have much floor space, pick up something like an Ikea Skadis pegboard so you can pin things on to the wall,” home organiser Charlotte Sitton, founder of Organised by Charlotte explains. “The beauty of something like an Ikea Skadis board is you can store so much on it – place paperclips in the containers, have pens in the pen pot, or even secure your glasses using a cable tie! The options are limitless.”

Featured product

SKADIS Pegboard, Ikea

RRP: £15

SKADIS Pegboard, Ikea

6. Don’t dismiss filing cabinets

Sometimes, the old ideas are the best

Symphony home office desk with pulled out filing cabinetCredit: Symphony Group

While other storage solutions may have risen in popularity in recent years, the humble filing cabinet is still one of the most popular home office storage ideas, thanks to its unbeatable functionality. “With a filing cabinet, it’s much easier to slot important paperwork into place,” Sitton shares. Laura Price, owner of The Home Organisation agrees, sharing that suspension files can also come in very handy in a filing cabinet.

“With these, your files are stored vertically, meaning you can find what you need in a matter of seconds,” she explains. “They are also very versatile because they expand as your files do, helping your paperwork to feel under control.”

One of the best things about filing cabinets is that they can easily fit into any space; there are tall, slimline options for offices with a smaller floor plan, or wider, shorter options that can be popped under a desk.

7. Incorporate storage into your desk

Either by buying a desk with storage or putting storage beneath

Crown imperial desk in aqua with pink wall and hanging pendantCredit: Crown Imperial

Consider combining your working area and your storage if you don’t want to waste an inch of space, Clemson urges. “A desk with storage is always a good option if you’re limited for space,” she says. “They can be more costly; however, Ikea does have some great options which are really affordable. And you can also buy the drawers and tabletop as separate pieces, meaning you can customise the desk with as much storage as you need.”

While combining your work and storage area can be beneficial in a smaller room, it’s also sensible in larger spaces, too, Devonald explains.

“Creating a single work and storage zone is ideal for a shared multifunctional room, such as a spare bedroom or kitchen, and helps you maximise every available space.”

8. Incorporate floating shelves

And zone them with baskets or dividers

A PLACE FOR EVERYTHING Bigso A4 Fibreboard Storage DrawersCredit: A Place For Everything

For another simple way to make use of your wall spaces, floating shelves can provide both a convenient and easily accessed storage spot, as well as add a stylish design element to your home office. Price says: “A home office tends to be one of the smallest rooms in the house, so adding shelving will create lots of extra storage without the need for extra furniture on the floor.”

To separate work from play in your office, Sitton suggests using “a shelf divider or a basket, to zone off areas within your shelving”.

If you are planning on storing work-based items here, though, Laura warns that there’s one other element to consider. “It’s good to note that paperwork and office items can often be heavy, so make sure the shelves you install are suitable, and reinforced if necessary.”

9. Add some personality to your storage via colour

Green is a go-to

Credit: Bisley at John Lewis

Planning your home office storage shouldn’t be all about the practical elements, so add some personality through your colour choices! “A home office doesn’t have to be sterile or formal; part of the joy of working from home is that it can feel comfortable and personal,” Denham points out.

When it comes to the home office colour schemes the professionals recommend, green is a winning choice. “We love the use of greens and neutrals in a home office – a soft green is a calming colour to create a relaxing working environment,” Clemson reveals.

Denham agrees, sharing that: “Soft olives or sage tones are probably the easiest to style, while a darker club green can make a room feel cosy; it’s also great for feeling serious and sensible when you need to.”

Featured product

Bisley Oak Veneer Desk with Drawers, John Lewis

RRP: £349

Bisley Oak Veneer Desk with Drawers, John Lewis

10. Make the most of unusual/unexpected spots

Corners and the backs of doors have hidden potential

Curved corner desk in linen with floating shelf and wall-mounted lightsCredit: Crown Imperial

And finally, the experts suggest exploring areas you may not have previously considered as a storage option in your office. For example, Glanville suggests: “Use the space behind a door – here you can install a small storage unit or shelving to store items such as shoes, tools or other small items. This will help free up floor space, and keep everything easily accessible.”

Don’t dismiss the corners of your room either, despite their more awkward orientation. Here, Glanville explains: “You can install custom corner shelves or corner units to store items, such as books.”


Written by Amy Hunt she/her