The arrival of Covid-19 has brought great changes in our lives, and among the most marked trends that will probably leave a lasting impression is the rise of teleworking.
Companies that have been able to, have sent their employees to work from home, and so thousands of people have had to improvise a home office.
Although at first the most pressing issue seemed to be to find a space for a desk where to place the computer and a comfortable chair to spend many hours at it, the truth is that one of the most important elements when working is the control of light.
A "home office" should always be placed in a well-lit place, with the source of natural light as close as possible to the desk, but taking this for granted, there are multiple options to consider, from the location of the desk to the type of curtain or blind to be used.
Let's go with them!
The ideal when setting up our home office is to place the desk with the light coming in from the left (if we are right-handed) or from the right (if we are left-handed). This way, we will not cast shadows when writing and the computer will not interfere with the window.
However, there are people who do not like to work facing the wall, and therefore prefer to place the desk under the window or with its back to it.
Placing the desk under the window has the advantage of working with a view of the landscape, although it can distract us from our work and if we use a computer with a fixed screen we will have problems opening the window unless it is sliding, sash or opens outwards.
On the other hand, placing the desk with its back to the window is common when the person prefers to work facing the door to see who is coming in (or so that no one can see what they are doing when they come in), although in return they will be shaded by their own body when working and, in some cases, the light coming from the window could reflect on the computer screen (especially if it is bright) and be annoying.
Another option if we want to avoid these inconveniences but avoid working facing the wall would be to place the desk in the center of the room, either with the light coming in from the right or the left depending on preference.
This allows us to take advantage of the wall of our home office to place shelves and at the same time work with more space in front. On the other hand, it is complicated to work with computers, mainly because of the wiring, which must reach a socket and therefore ends up cluttering the floor.
Once the location of the desktop has been chosen, it is time to choose how to cover the windows. And it is here where we find many options that we will explain now so as not to get lost.
It is a very rare option, but of course, there are those who are in favor of not dressing the windows with any light control element.
However, this is usually only feasible when the sun does not shine directly on us and when we enjoy a landscape worthy of admiration and total privacy, which is not usually the case for most of us.
They are one of the most popular choices for a home office, since aesthetically they are great for giving an "office look" and functionally they are ideal for certain options, particularly when you have the desk under the window.
Among the types of blinds, roller blinds are the most practical, although the rod blinds are also in great demand for their warmer or more homely appearance, although they have the disadvantage that when they are raised, they do not go all the way to the top (there is always a visible strip) and therefore care must be taken so that they do not get in the way when the window is opened.
In any of the cases, it will be necessary to take into account the fabric of which it is made. The most suitable for work purposes are the screen type, which regulate the entry of light based on different ranges that make it bounce more or less outward. Some of them also regulate heat, so they can be interesting for very warm locations.
Ideally, they should also be translucent, so that they allow light to pass through but do not eliminate it, creating an effect of intimacy without affecting luminosity.
However, some people prefer opaque blinds, which can be interesting when working at night and we do not want to be seen from the other side (for example if we have neighbors in front of us at a short distance), since the translucent ones, with the light given from the inside, would allow us to be seen from the outside.
Some of these blinds can be placed on the outside of the window and others on the inside, with the exact shape of the glass.
Finally, to control light and privacy at the same time there are night and day blinds, which are formed by a double layer textile that combines opaque strips with translucent strips, so that when we want privacy we regulate the layers so that the translucent strips are covered by the opaque ones and when we want light we open them.
The curtains avoid the problem of blinds when the windows are casement windows and you want to keep them open. In this way, the window can be opened and the curtain can be drawn inside to avoid being seen without losing ventilation.
Likewise, as far as curtains are concerned, it is usual to choose translucent curtains to allow light to pass through.
However, when the desk is in front of the window, it should be set back a little inwards to allow the play of the curtain waves, and if the desk has a lot of depth, it will not be so comfortable to run them, so in this case it is preferable for narrow desks.
Finally, apart from the classic blind that usually comes with the window itself to control the light, there is the option of Venetian blinds.
This type of blinds allow, like the night-day blinds, the control of light in a single element by means of the adjustable inclination of its slats, avoiding having to combine several options together.
Venetian blinds can be found with horizontal slats, which function as a blind (from top to bottom) or with vertical slats, which function as a curtain (from left to right).
They can also be placed outside the window or in the window opening, although in this case it is important to make sure that they do not interfere with the opening of the window.
As for the materials, the blinds can be made of wood, metal or vinyl / PVC. Depending on the aesthetics that you want to give to your home office, the ease of cleaning or possible allergies, you can choose one or the other.
For example, the wooden ones are the most aesthetic (and also the most expensive), but if you are allergic to dust mites, the ideal ones will be the vinyl ones, which repel dust better.
In addition, they can be adjusted with the classic chain or ordered motorized.
To mitigate the disadvantages of both options, a combination of two dimming elements is sometimes ideal.
It is usual to opt for a blind behind curtains. This way you have the advantages of both worlds while avoiding the disadvantages.
There are also those who choose two layers of curtains, a more translucent one for daytime and a more opaque one on top for night work. This solution aesthetically gives a very elegant look to the room.
Finally, as with the blinds, the blinds can be used alone or combined with curtains to give a warmer look.
In short, a whole world of options for light control in our home office with the idea of making working at home as pleasant and healthy as possible.