How to Create a Work Space Under the Stairs

November 2, 2015 by Ariana | 1 Comment

Living in San Francisco (or any big city), space usually comes at a premium and every square foot counts.  City dwellers have to make the most of it and use a little imagination — like how to utilize the dead space under the stairs of a loft?  A friend who sometimes works from home, wants to create an inviting office without taking up space from the existing living quarters.  The area under her loft stairs is the best candidate.  After some thought and research (i.e., internet browsing), here’s what I came up with for how to create an inspired work space under the stairs:

Good lighting is important in any work space, but particularly when it is located under the stairs.  To combat a dark environment, not to mention give your eyes a break, be sure to brighten the space with enough lighting.  It’s even better if the light fixture becomes a design feature, like in the photo below.

Ideas for Using the Space Under Your Stairs | Apartment Therapy:

Source: Apartment Therapy

With limited space, efficient storage is also a must.  The area below is a prime example of putting all your space to work, adding storage on the walls and under the lower end of the stairs that is too low to fit a desk.  And since this photo is from the folks at Ikea, maximizing space and organizing your supplies doesn’t have to break the bank.

Instead of seeing the space under the stairs as a utility room, see it as a productive working space:


Maximize the top of your desk by choosing a desktop that spans the usable width under the stairs.  A typical desk height is 30 inches, so measure from the tallest point of the understair area to the point where the stairs hit 30 inches to determine your optimal desktop width.  There are a lot of affordable options for finding different-sized desktops (try Ikea or your local hardware store).  Add ready-made legs or place it on top of two file cabinets for a customized look.

An Eclectic & Industrial Vancouver Loft | Design*Sponge:


Lastly, everyone could use a little inspiration, especially when working.  Add some inspiration to your walls.  We love the wallpaper and decorative clock in the photo below.  A great piece of art or an idea board would also work well.  After all, odds are you’ll be looking at that wall for awhile.



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