How to create a desk in a livingroom?

When I’ve finished my studies, I thought I would never need a desk at home anymore. Well, I just forgot one thing. Homeworks were not disappearing, they were just becoming different. Administration, bills, everyday emails or even working from home. All these tasks need an organized and specific place. But what can you do when you don’t have space for this anymore ? Specially when you are living in an apartment ? You would like to be more comfortable than just having your laptop on your knees but how to create a desk in a livingroom when it seems you don’t have space for it ?

Here’s what I would do if I had such a case to resolve. Forget about the classic desk as if you were still at school and let be more creative.

Built-in desk

Built-in wooden desk with a black chair

Surely your livingroom (or any other room) has unused corner, either because of their weird shape or just because you have nothing to put there. Just filling this empty space with a simple board fixed to the wall will create the desk you need. By making it on measure in an existing space, your desk will appear to fit perfectly into the room.

You should prefer a material matching the surroundings, walls or furniture, to make it as discreet as possible. If you choose to create your desk next to your existing bookshelves, choose a board of the same thickness and make sure to align a shelf with the desk to have a harmonious visual.

+ easy to create and to adapt to any space

- no space for storage or printer. You have to think about another piece of furniture next to the desk to put them.

Hidden desk

wooden desk integrated in a white cupboard

Maybe you don’t want to see your desk when you aren’t using it. Or maybe you know that your desk will soon be a bit messy and would like to be able to hide it. Then, choose to create your desk behind doors. Either on measure or by buying the right cupboard for it. You just need to think about having enough space for your legs when you’re sitting in front of it.

Why not having a wall completely covered with cupboards to make your hidden desk disappears between them ?

+ can hide a printer and the storage for all your folders

- take space, specially if using swing doors which stay open while you’re working

Console table

black console table with 2 legs against the wall

If you only need a place to use your laptop from time to time, then a console table can be a good option. Discreet, elegant, you can easily find the style you want in any shop. Of course, it means you have enough space to put one in your living room as the dimensions won’t be on-measure. I would recommend it if you already know you don’t want a desk available full-time. Indeed, a console table is more a decorative piece of furniture. You can use it if you need to sit somewhere to answer some emails but will clean the place directly afterwards to make the « desk » disappear.

+ easy to find in any shop for any price

- looks more like a classic desk. You also have to be organized to keep the decorative aspect.

Shelves system

String system white

Several brands have created furniture system including a desk. Sometimes, it’s one piece lying against the wall, including several shelves with a deeper one to put a computer. Sometimes, it’s a modular system you can arrange as you want, like the famous String system with its infinite possibilities.

Usually compact, this option is an efficient solution because it doesn’t take too much space on the floor. It’s also an original and decorative solution as long as you keep the place tidy by organizing your stuff and maybe hide them in some nice boxes.

+ good optimisation for your space

- Need to be tidy to keep a nice look.

Pull-down desk

wooden fold down desk

Like the console-table, this option is for occasionnal use only. It has to be considered for its decorative aspect as it is an original object.

Maybe you will open it to work for some time and close it afterwards, or you will prefer to enjoy its decorative and original aspect by letting it open. In any case, you won’t be able to let all your papers, folders and computer open and lying around.

There are many different options available on the market and don’t forget that you can even create your own DIY. In my opinion, a small one, hanging on the wall is the best option as it’s the most optimized one.

+ original and optimized

- Better looking when open so need to be kept tidy.


Of course, these options are not the only one and every space can get its own answer. It just shows you different possibilities to give you inspiration for your own space. To need a place to put your computer doesn’t mean you have to get a desk as if you were a teeenager again.

If you want some more inspiration, I’ve remembered this article by LeaFlora (in French), showing one of my project on Homify.fr, giving you 6 examples of « super-efficient desks ». Maybe it will give you even more ideas.

If you need some help, we can have a chat together and see how I can help. Tell me everything on this page.

Have a good day !