Choosing A Style For Your Office

Whether you're preparing to open your company's first office or you've changed locations, you might be considering your office furniture choices. With so many types of desks, chairs, storage options, and accessories available, it's advisable to have a plan before you start selecting your furniture. Taking a look at the big picture can keep your office furniture cohesive and establish an appearance that reflects the goals of your company.

Start by choosing the general style you want for your office. Usually, these styles fall into one of three main categories: traditional, contemporary, or transitional. Traditional offices often incorporate wood furniture finished in rosy stains for a classical appearance. This is the perfect choice for larger, executive offices, especially in reputation-based professions such as banking. The furniture can be inviting to guests and clients, but it can be all-too-easy for traditional furniture to walk the line between familiar elegance to pass gaudiness. Plus, many types of traditional furniture are rather large as they're emulating centuries-old furniture designs. That means that you need to be careful if you choose to give your office a more traditional look because you may end up with furniture that is too big for your space. Such a mistake would cause the area to look cluttered or intimidating.

In complete contrast, the offices that opt for contemporary looks are worlds away from traditional wood-centric furnishings. Instead, they focus on using modern materials like steel, glass, plastics, and composites to achieve a fresh, bold look. These materials are often much easier to care for than the traditional materials such as solid wood and leather. Desks, chairs, and other office furniture that falls into the contemporary category are often minimalistic, with sleek, clean lines, so they make offices look airier and more open. An office that uses all contemporary furniture will likely seem focused on the future, so the style is an excellent choice for technology-centric businesses. Be careful when choosing your office furniture, however, because too much modernity can come off as cold and unwelcoming.

Although these styles have strengths that make them a perfect fit for many offices, sometimes these statements are too bold. If you're worried that traditional furniture will look old-fashioned for your business while contemporary furniture would look a little too clean, you'll be glad to know that there's a middle ground. Transitional furniture blends the best of both worlds, allowing you to reap the benefits that each style provides. For instance, you might choose a desk that has a traditional design but is executed in more modern materials that won't be as easily marred as wood might be.

Whatever style of office furniture you choose, it should echo the image your company wants to convey and make a great impression on clients. In addition to these more aesthetic concerns, however, always remember that the function of the furniture is of paramount importance. After all, keeping employees comfortable at their workspaces and fostering productivity should be at the top of every business's to-do list.

Charlie O'Brien is a professional writer specializing in workplace design. His writing focuses on office furniture (, workplace layout, and related topics. His work has been featured on multiple office furniture websites.

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