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A pergola is a great outdoor structure that adds aesthetic value to your garden, as well as being a lovely space to spend time outside. But did you know that this flexible space can be used as a beautiful home office? In this blog we’ll talk about why it’s so great to work outside, and how you can best set up your pergola to function as an office space.
Fresh air and sunshine are vital to human health – both physical and mental. In a culture that is newly embracing working from home, we’re now in a unique place to make the most of not being stuck in an office all day. You can enjoy the calming sensation of listening to birds while admiring a beautiful green outlook. By working from your garden, you can literally get up to ‘stop and smell the roses’ every so often for a serotonin boost that helps uplift your spirits as you work. And, of course, it’s recommended to have a walk around or stretch every hour or so when sitting at a desk all day.
Working outside can make work a pleasure, rather than something that keeps you from enjoying your home. It also helps you to create a dedicated space outside your home space, to boost your work-life balance and not feel like you’re bringing work into the house.
Of course, your pergola office will need the usual must-haves: a chair, a desk, a computer, power, and WiFi. If it’s loud outside, noise-cancelling headphones might also be an important addition. And make sure that anything you plan to leave outside permanently is safe in outdoor conditions.
If you work from a computer that needs to stay plugged in, can you take it outdoors? If you need internet to do your job, does your WiFi reach your garden? You might need to set up a system to get electricity connected to your pergola, and purchase a WiFi booster.
Remember that just because you’re working outside, doesn’t mean you don’t still need a proper setup. Make sure you have a comfortable chair at the right height for your desk, so you can work comfortably without your body taking a toll. Effective back support and posture are vital.
Light and shade are incredibly important to stop eye strain. If you’re working into the evening or on a dark, cloudy day, it’s important to have lights available in your pergola office space so you can still see well. Conversely, light that’s too bright can create glare, making it difficult to see screens or read documents printed on white paper. We’re located in Brisbane, so we know how strong the summer sun can be. Having a shaded area will help you avoid eye strain.
Although getting lots of sun is great, you don’t want to be sitting out in the elements with no protection all day. Sunburn and eye strain can be a concern. It’s important to set up your desk in a spot under your pergola that is weather-protected. Especially if your desk and chair aren’t built for the outdoors – you don’t want them ruined by rain!
You could consider adding some walls to your pergola for weather-protection, making it more like an outdoor room than just a free-standing shade. Glass walls are a great option to keep it feeling like an outdoor space, while offering protection. Curtains or blinds can also be added for some shade and privacy.
For hot days, add a fan to the ceiling/beams for a lovely breeze. For cold days, add some blankets and cushions to make your space extra cosy.
Your garden pergola likely already has lots of plants around it. If it doesn’t yet, consider adding some to boost the green feeling of your outdoor office. Small pot plants are always a lovely addition to a desk.
If your pergola has a wall, you could even hang some uplifting artwork. The colour blue is especially good for boosting focus and mood. Some cute outdoor sculptures can also add to the outdoor office aesthetic, or you can add some fake metal or plastic books to create an outdoor library effect.
If you have the space, electricity access, and weather-proofing, you could also add an outdoor fridge or coffee/tea station so you can stay hydrated all day without having to go back into the house.
Although working outside boosts your health and serotonin, and therefore is likely to overall increase focus, there are still lots of potential distractions outdoors. Noisy neighbours, birds, other wildlife, pets, bugs, and more.
If bugs are an issue, you can burn some citronella candles to repel them. And for noise distractions, noise-cancelling headphones are a fantastic option. You can play some calming classical or lo-fi music and let your mind relax as you dive into full focus.
Regardless of how you use it, a pergola can be an impressive addition to your garden’s aesthetic, creating a stunning usable space that will bring you joy for years to come.
At Diamond Patios we are happy to discuss all options with you including pergola maintenance. The traditional style roof with the character and warmth of exposed timber rafters and beams suits many Queensland homes.
To get started give us a call 1800 335 464, or email or click on our quote calculator below to the right or top right. We would love to discuss your Pergola, Gazebo, Verandah and Arbor needs.