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6 Ideas for Creating a Sustainable and Inspirational Home Office

According to a recent Fast Company article many CEOs are choosing home office spaces over remote locations. It’s also worth mentioning, many of the greats, such as, Apple, Microsoft, Google and Amazon all started from their garage. So if you’re in the midst of deciding where to locate your office, or just trying to reinvent your space, read on for some tips from DugOut Design Studio’s recent home office renovation. 

Balancing People, Planet and Profit

Sustainability is a great word when it comes to both business and renovation. Not only does it encompass searching for economical and eco-friendly options but also taking a long-term investment approach. In order for something to be sustainable, the relationships (people), the planet and the business (profit) all need to last. We especially love this route because when you start thinking sustainably, you start thinking creatively. What can I reuse, repurpose and cut out? Ultimately, these decisions lead to one-of-a-kind creative spaces, you won’t find in a store. 

1. Design with Sustainability In Mind

If you're building anything out, here are some tips for saving from the start. If you're moving into an existing room, scroll down for more ideas.
*Disclaimer: Please check with your local building department for permitting requirements.

Value Engineering

Reduce the amount of materials you need to buy and the amount of waste you create by designing your project with raw material specs in mind. If you are working with 4x8 sheets of plywood, then make sure your room is not 4'-3" x 8'-2.5". This will reduce the amount of money and time spent on your project at an early stage. A 3D model can help with this, as well as, give you a head start for presenting your project for permitting.

Integrate recycled Materials

Use what you have. Instead of throwing everything away, try to make it a habit to look at raw materials as technical nutrients that can be repurposed or up-cycled into new or improved items.

2. Repurpose: 4 ways we up-cycled old fence slats

It's time to re-use those technical nutrients instead of throwing them in the trash. Tons of perfectly good materials end up in landfills on a daily basis, which should be considered technical nutrients. The best part, you'll feel inspired everyday from your creative use of materials and unique look.


Custom Shelving application

Door and Window Trim

Cedar Planks ripped in half

Base Board

Split 6in wide fence slats

Reclaimed Wall Paneling

Added texture and warmth to the room

3. Rethink your resources: make it personal

There's no better feeling than breathing life into something that is just taking up space in a box somewhere. Here are 4 things we transformed into more useful products while adding color and history to our walls. This upcycling process helps us feed back into the system instead of continually buying new products that use valuable natural resources and add to the pollution of the planet.

Skateboards to Shelving

Decks + Shelf Brackets = storage solution

Doors to Desks

Old Closet Doors make great desktops

Old kitchen pantry to bench tops

used to hold food, now holds tools

4. ReUse and Shop Reclaimed

Go Used

There are a growing number of reclaimed material and used goods stores available. If you invest the time, you'll find amazing deals in great condition at Habitat for Humanity Re-Stores, garage sales, GoodWill locations, as well as, specialty restoration stores. Not only will you save some coin, but you can end up with a much better product with character then the off-the-shelf cheap-o furniture you will find at one of the big-box stores.

(Using existing paint and elbow grease)

5. Fresh Air for Better Health

For as much time as we spend working in a day, a healthy workspace is optimal. And when it comes to mother nature, she does it best. Being in front of a screen all day is much more bearable when you have a window to get a cross breeze, hear the birds singing and the kids playing. And when it comes to utilizing mother nature, according to a study conducted by NASA, spider plants removed 95% of formaldehyde from a sealed plexiglass container in less than 24 hours. Forget the technology + chemicals that humans think is superior, let mother nature do her thing.
office window addition

Choose a spot with a window


Add some purifying plants

Spider Plants naturally purify the air

6. Carve out a Space for Your Family

When you move home, understanding the balance between work and play can become confusing for kids. So, plan ahead and make the transition easier on everyone by making a space for kids in the office too. This way they feel welcomed, a part of the business and also have something to do! ... (a must if you're going to get anything done). Best part, the kids get you off your chair and into the yard or streets exercising on breaks! You come back refreshed and often inspired!

Bean Bags. The Ultimate Movable Chair.


dry erase board for drawing