Home Office Dilemma by Holly M.


Decorating Dilemmas is a weekly column in which our stylists answer your design questions, so you can tackle your home decorating project with complete confidence.

Dear Ballard Designs,

We’ve just moved into a new house and we’d like to turn the living room into our home office. (The picture above includes the previous owners’ furniture).

It measures 14 feet (window side) by 12 feet (entrance side), so it’s not a huge room.

We’d like it to have a decent-sized desk that can hold a desktop computer with two screens and some sort of storage (credenza, bookshelves?) since we sometimes work from home and have a lot of files that need to be organized.

We originally thought we wanted a “floating” desk so that the computer screen can’t be seen if we have clients over. When we tried that, there were computer cords everywhere! We can’t figure out how to arrange it in an attractive way, and it needs to look nice because it’s the first room anyone sees when they enter the house.

Any ideas would be much appreciated!! We’re willing to start from scratch with paint, furniture, rugs, etc.


Holly M.


Dear Holly,

Below is our floor plan for your new home office.

We chose Benjamin Moore’s Light Khaki paint (2148-40) for the walls.  On the floor – our Valentino Rug will help to pull the colors together.

For your office furniture our new dark gray would look great!

As you can see, we chose 2-3 drawer file cabinets with hutches above. This should provide you with enough filng space as well as storage.

In between the hutches, we chose our series of Vintage Cloisonne Prints for a dramatic impact.

The office chair is called Elle Tufted covered in Griege Linen. The two guest chairs are our Grammercy Chairs covered in Document Spa fabric.

In the left corner of the room, we chose the Morgan Shelving in dark gray. This piece will provide you with additional storage. We placed two Marie Buffet Lamps on the top to light up the corner. Set between the lamps, we hung the School House Map as a point of interest.

For a finishing touch, our Burlap Crewel Trellis Panels (hung above the window – close to the ceiling) will help to give your office a warm and inviting look!

Happy Decorating,

The Style Studio Team



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How to Decorate Team

We enjoy spending days interacting with How to Decorate readers. From answering Design Dilemmas to writing How To articles and working with guest designers, our passion is to provide informative and accurate resources to help people solve their design problems.


  1. Reply

    Holly M

    September 19, 2013

    I love it! Thanks so much for your help! Which table did you select for between the two guest chairs?