A Space to Think: How to Decorate a Study

Once upon a time, most houses of a certain size would have had a study. As time has gone by and homes have become generally more compact, this particular room has largely fallen out of favour. But it's worth giving some consideration to if you have the space to fit one in.

A study means you'll have a place to keep all of your favourite books; a place to work in peace if you need to work at home. A place to unwind and relax, or to be creative and come up with new ideas. If you're not sure how to get started, here are some decorating tips for your very own study:


If you're serious about your study, you're going to need a desk. Really, this can be any type of desk you like, but for serious impact go for a large, antique – or at least, vintage-style – number in a rich oak. A comfortable high-backed desk chair will keep your spine supported when you while away time reading, writing and thinking.

If space allows, it's worth adding an extra chair as well. A large armchair in the corner makes the perfect spot for a bit of late-night reading.


For a study, you need plenty of books, so invest in some solid full-length bookcases to keep them all in. That's really all you need, storage-wise, although a couple of extra shelves can give you space to store intriguing items from your travels, or family heirlooms.


Colour has a lot to do with mood, so it's well worth giving some serious thought to this. There are two main choices when it comes to painting a study:

Blue has strong associations with both relaxation and focus, making it an excellent choice for a study. Feeling focused without stress is just what you need to get some work done.

The second possibility is green. Like blue, green can help you feel more relaxed but also sparks creativity, so it's perfect if you're a writer or artist.

Whichever colour you choose, avoid bright, overpowering shades, opting instead for more muted, pale colours. If you don't want to paint every wall a colour, you could use an accent wall opposite the desk so you'll see the colour as you work.

Extra touches

What's a study without a large, impressive-looking globe? This should definitely be included in your plans. Also make space for a bright desk lamp, some leafy green plants, and a few interesting knick-knacks to help stimulate your imagination.

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