Japandi design known for its beautiful blend of modern and traditional styling, but it does more than look good. It boosts productivity, which is the most important goal of any home desk setup. The warm, relaxed workspace encourages mindfulness and creativity, and the enduring look and feel of the products ground you while you work. Each piece is also functional. Japandi items are meant to be used.
These benefits and blending of Japanese and Scandinavian design – two enduring styles – make it a worthy investment. As an interior designer, I recommend Japandi and currently use it in my home office. I feel its benefits of the design style every day while working from home, and you can too.
Here is everything you need to know to create japandi style home office.
What is a Japandi Home Office?
Japandi design combines Japanese and Scandinavian interior design. Both aesthetics feature natural elements, simple design, minimalistic setups, and intelligent and purposeful placement of furniture and accessories to create a serene and mindful office environment.
For a deeper understanding of the history of Japandi and how the style is used for home décor, check out my article on Japandi interior design.
Characteristics of a Japandi Style Home Office
Here are some aspects you will spot in Japandi rooms. You will learn that the look has much to do with nature and balance.
Japandi is deeply connected to nature, so indoor plants are a chief element of it. Small desk and tabletop succulents, lucky bamboo, flowers, and tall plants add an organic touch while keeping the air clean and rooms cooler.
Light is a key element for creating a calming and serene atmosphere. Natural light is best, but even rooms without natural light can use manufactured lighting to create a comfortable and calm ambiance. Disperse the light throughout the room to not appear too bright or too dark.
Following the natural theme, neutral and earthy colors are standard and a chief way of creating a calm feeling in the room. Familiar tones include white, beige, tan, brown, black, blue, green, and gold. The range of colors encompasses all the items in the space, from the walls to the flooring, furniture, and accessories.
The calm feeling of Japandi interiors is partially based on more space and reduced clutter for improved tranquility and creativity. A less-is-more aesthetic is the goal, achieved by tapering down items to reduce visual and mental clutter in your office space.
Sure, a professional home office should include all the items you need for your job. Still, you can limit their number or find attractive storage for things you need in ways that exude minimalism.
Quality, Not Quantity
High-quality pieces are given priority, whether the quality is the durability, style, or the item’s importance in your life. They are statement pieces, and when set in a less-is-more floorplan, they shine for an even more engaging story.
Highly Functional and Purposeful Items
apandi isn’t just décor. Every piece of furniture, art, and accessory has a purpose. Items are meant to be used while being aesthetically beautiful. They engage the eye and evoke the style’s warm characteristics. Even where and how the pieces are placed is part of its connection to functionality.
Clean lines and Organic shapes
The minimalistic designs have an underlying natural theme. Japandi-style furniture pieces, office supplies, and accessories are often streamlined, curved, or tapered – even graceful.
The connection with nature makes Japandi a natural choicer for eco/sustainable interior design and products. Items may be made from sustainable materials and manufacturing methods, but reusing things you already have is also sustainable.
Japanese design exudes a Zen-like balance, including sturdy elements for an enduring experience. The items ground you with a more solid, earthy foundation. Solid, natural materials like wood, stone, and metal are common.
Bespoke, Artisinal Items
The items bring a more human appeal in unique and eye-catching ways. Whether handmade by you or others, the objects, building methods, and craftsmanship tell stories that enrich your workspace.
Wabi Sabi / Imperfection
Wabi-sabi is an part of Japandi. It is a philosophy that finds beauty in imperfection, which can be in handmade items you buy or make. Items that have been damaged and repaired are particularly powerful way of evoking wabi sabi, something Japan calls kintsugi. For more about wabi-sabi and kintsugi, see my article on creating a wabi-sabi home office.
History and wabi-sabi come together in upcycled pieces. Japandi values items that tell stories, and upcycled items have stories to tell. Often, pieces are reworked into new pieces, offering modern functionality and an engaging backstory.
Antiques and Heirloom Pieces
Hand in hand with wabi-sabi, bespoke, and upcycled items are antiques and heirlooms. Each piece brings history that puts spaces on a more solid foundation.
Nature reigns supreme, proudly showing itself throughout rooms. Some common materials are:
- Wood: Bamboo, oak, walnut, maple, birch, and driftwood are all popular.
- Paper: Art, light shades, and wall panels incorporating paper are common.
- Stone: You will find it featured on items like statues, fountains, tile, rock oil diffusers, and material on lighting and desk accessories. It can appear as natural rock or as polished marble.
Warm, Natural Textures
From area rugs to upholstery and wall art, texture creates a deeper connection to nature. Examples include fabrics like jute, linen, leather, and cotton, as well as raw wood finishes and harder, concrete-like treatments.
Elements in a Japandi Home Office
The good news is that Japandi is based on two enduring styles, so although new Japandi trends may pop up and change over time, the underlying themes are likely to be around a while and worth investing in. You can find Japandi in everything from pots to desk accessories.
The more you use those items, the more you tap into the benefits of Japandi, which is partially based on history. You are meant to use these items, and their patina adds to the experience.
You may already have office items you want to keep and use, which is fine; you can add to them to create a more Japandi aesthetic. Either way, here are some design ideas.
Japandi Plants and Pots
Greenery is part of the Japandi experience. Remember that the plants will need light to stay healthy and grow. Some need more light than others, so plan accordingly. You can also provide controlled lighting with a plant grow light. You can buy premade pots with a natural look and natural materials or make your own pots for an even more Japandi look and feel.
Japandi Wall Paint
As said above, Japandi colors include whites, beiges, browns, grays, and blacks, greens, and blues. The long list of natural-toned colors makes it easy to switch out over time for a fresh look.
Japandi Floor Coverings
Today, there are many types of wood floors for home offices, including wood-like options. Some look so real that you can still exude a natural vibe. That said, the more actual wood you use, the more Japandi your room.
Japandi Screens and Wall Coverings
Since Japan is such a strong influence in Japandi, you will often find wood screens used in spaces that work as handy room dividers if your home office is in a common-use area. Slatted wall paneling can also be applied directly to walls while providing sound reduction. Wallpaper in natural materials like jute and linen or in natural themes also wraps the room in texture.
A Japandi desk can be made from natural materials or utilize Japandi colors. Examples include solid wood desks, veneer wood desks, and white or black desks. They can have storage and standing capabilities for improved functionality. Even if the desk is made from non-natural materials, you can add natural accessories to connect the space to nature. More on that in a bit.
Japandi Desk Chairs
A Japandi chair may feature wood in its frame or a warm look and feel with color and texture. If you have a chair you already love, you can keep it and add more Japandi style for balance. A chair is arguably the most critical furniture item in your workspace, so keep it a priority.
Japandi Desk Accessories
Your setup can exude Japandi vibes through sold or wood veneer accessories, such as a monitor stand, laptop stand, phone charger, light, monitor stand, and desk pad in wool or leather. Even your notebook, writing utensils, and wrist rest come in natural materials and Japandi colors.
You can use a repurposed natural wood cabinet or buy new furniture that exudes natural wood vibes while providing clean storage for all of your work materials. The cleaner the room, the more Japandi your room will be.
Shelving and pegboard materials are similar to those used for desk: solid wood, veneered wood, or other materials in Japandi colors. Shelving is often minimalistic, streamlined, in organic shapes, or features a rustic, worn look. They also work as an attractive accent wall for your next Zoom call, displaying items that show your expertise and interests to keep you smiling and viewers talking.
Japandi Additional Seating
A sofa or lounge chair helps provide enduring comfort and a fresh perspective while working. Since it is often the the largest piece in the room, choosing designs with clean, less-is-more styling, organic shapes, and Japandi colors and textures has a massive impact on the experience. The more functional they are for your working and relaxing, the better.
Japandi lighting prioritizes natural light, but it also encompasses ambient light in all its forms for a more peaceful experience and less eye strain. Examples of home office lighting include:
- strip lighting
- paper shades
- wood or metal desk lamps
- wood or metal floor lamps
- ceiling can lighting
Japandi Style: Enduring Design for Enduring Growth
The blend of Scandinavian and Japanese design creates a harmonious space for working, and the enduring styles ensure it stays that way. In a Japandi-inspired home office, every item tells a story by blending beauty and functionality in a minimalistic, organic way. Each day you work, you add to that piece’s history, putting yourself on a more solid foundation for continued growth.
The key to your office design is using pieces that help you in your work, speak most to you, and give your space a clean, minimalist appearance so your mind is less cluttered. You’ll be surprised how much you get done.