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Create more space for your workspace

For some, a clean, organized workspace is essential to stay focused. For others, chaos reigns supreme. But whether you need room for more carefully-tabbed filing or somewhere to hide a pile of forgotten paperwork, a bit more desk space can always be useful.

But unless you’re in line for a promotion and the office of your dreams, simply getting a bigger desk is rarely an option.

So, in the spirit of making your working day at bit less stressful, we’ve compiled a list of 9 straightforward yet creative ways to eke out more desktop real estate. Simple solutions to help you put some order back in your workspace.

Expand your desk space outwards 

One of the simplest solutions for a shortage of desk space is to utilize the ‘dead air’ around your desk. And there are a few options that an help, especially for those who want to organize a desk without drawer.

#1

The DIY hack: Suspended Jars (this one is seriously clever!)

Required:

Clean Jars with tightly fitting lids

 

Strong glue

Method:

  1. Glue the lids firmly to the underside of your desk
  2. Fill (freshly cleaned) jars with everything from paperclips to sneaky office snacks
  3. Attach jars to lids
  4. Sit back and marvel at the simplicity
Under-desk Jar storage

#2

A cheap and cheerful solution: Clever Clips

Required: Giant plastic clips

  1. Check your desk has a lip/edge suitable for a giant clip
  2. Buy 1 or more clips for just a few bucks each
  3. Fill with everything from smaller clips to M&Ms
  4. With some solidly strong ones, you could even place your drinks out of elbow-reach. No more sticky keyboards!
Giant desk clip organizer

#3

A crafty idea: Hanging Organizers

Organize desk space with expanding filesOption A: Quick, easy & virtually free- Hanging Concertina/expanding folder

First, raid the stationery cupboard.

Take 1 expanding file. And some sticky tape (or other suitably sticky stuff). Fasten the file to the side of your desk.

Voila, a rudimentary but perfectly functional way to expand your desk storage.

Option B: Creative, but a bit of effort Fabric hanging organizers (sewing skills may be required)

For anyone with a taste for crafts and looking for something more attractive and practical than a plain old concertina folder, a fabric organizer offers could be for you.

Buy an attractive, easy-hang one or get your creative juices flowing and make one yourself. There are loads of videos on-line, we’ve shared a good one to get you started.

#4

Grow your desk: Keyboard trays and desk extenders

Keyboard tray desk extenderUnless you’re handy with carpentry tools, getting a simple desk extender is an easy way to boost your desk space. It will get the keyboard off your desk and can even provide you a little more legroom.

Or you could add an extension to the side of your desk to free up the center of your workspace.

And these days you can easily desk extenders that are ‘tool-free’ (translation: a damn sight easier to install) that do the job well.

If you can’t build out, build up

Panoramic view of Manhattan skylineIf your desk if packed tighter than a proverbial sardine, then your expansion options may be limited. This can be an even bigger problem if you’re trying to organize a desk without drawers.

A more conventional way to save space is through the use of desktop organizers.

This can encompass everything from a classic pencil holder through to more spacious storage.

#5

Make your toilet rolls work harder: Home-made desk organizers

Now, if you want to keep things personal, nothing beats making your own desk organizer.

But you no longer need to regress to childhood by gluing a few glittery loo roll inserts together. The wonders of the web means there are oodles of online videos to help you out. In amongst them are some genuinely cool creations.

Here’s a pick of our favorites. And all of them come with easy-to-follow instructions, ideal for novices and craft experts alike.

Recycled solidity

It’s a bureau, not a desk

Origami organized

#6

What’s up Doc?: Desk Hutches/shelves/monitor stands

Desk hutch for organizing deskTake your desktop organization to another level, literally.

Desktop shelving is another straightforward route to create more desk space, with the added bonus of helping you keep things organized. Desktop shelves range in size from small storage systems right through to entire ‘hutches’.

Hutches are typically sold as part of the original desk design, although free-standing hutches can be found. Although you might need to get your tool kit out to secure them.

Tip: Monitor stands or raised shelves can give you much need desk space and ensure your monitor is being viewed at the recommended eye level height.

Deal with the tech clutter

Computers were supposed to usher in a more efficient, clutter free way of working [not to mention paper-free]. Yet the number of electronic devices the average worker has to contend with is often part of the problem when organizing your workspace.

But there are a few things that can make the problem more manageable.

#7

Clear tangled cables: Cable tidy solutions

Clear cable clutter to organize and maximize desk space

Bluetooth, wi-fi and wireless charging have transformed the messy business of cable organization. And yet they are still everywhere!!!

Cables (for now) remain an ever-present tangle around many desks and can take up a fair amount of space. Rather than work around them, use one of many different cable tidy options to tidy them away but keep them within easy reach whenever you need them.

Velcro cable organizer

Power cables and other rarely touched cables can be bound together and banished from sight. Velcro and zip fastener cable sleeves make this super easy, while removing the need for fiddly and unattractive plastic ‘trunking’ options.

colorful cute cable clips

Binder clips holding electronic cablesFor the cables you need daily access to, like your phone charger, desk cable organizers are quick and easy. They range from the virtually-free [binder clips make good DIY cable organizers] to only-slightly-more-expensive cute and colorful tidies that can be stuck to the side of your desk.

White USB hubFor those with USB cable overload, USB hubs are a smart way to get on top of your cable jungle.

#8

Light up more space: Clever desk lamps

Clip on lamp to free up desk spaceAnother way to help organize your desk and squeeze out a bit more space can be found in the one of the items that usually takes up a fair chunk of valuable desk space.

As gadgets get smaller, so have desk lamps. LED lights have come a long way and can really light up a room now. They have also spawned an ever-growing range of slimline lighting options, helping you save space while doing your bit for the environment.

 Tip: Avoid LED lights with too much on the blue spectrum, which may not be ideal. Full spectrum LED lights that mimic natural light are now more commonplace and a may help you through gloomy winter days.

Option A: Clip-on lamps are cheap with a whole range of designs and styles. These super-flexible lamps are a great way to clear a corner of your desk.

Option B: Get even more out of your desk lamp. Multi-purpose lamps are growing in popularity and you may be surprised with just how many features can be crammed into one lamp. In many instances you can a gadget doing at least 2 jobs, but only taking up the space of 1 gadget.

You can easily find slimline LED lamps that include the following features:

  • USB and power outlets
  • Stationery Organizers
  • Clocks
  • Bladeless fans
  • Speakers
  • Kitchen sink
  • Combinations of all the above!
Bladeless fan and desk lamp combined
Desk lamp and desk organizer combined

#9

Move with the times: Space-saving tech

On the subject of clever solutions for getting on top of your desktop clutter, there are a few other smart tools that might help.

  • Clip-on fans – In fact, anything clip-on immediately frees up desk space!
  • Staple-free staplers – no more hunting around for the last strip of staples
  • Manual shredders – if you’re still using a lot of paper and handling sensitive documents, get rid of the bulky shredder and replace it with what is basically a multi-blade pair of scissors
  • Magic scanners – Magic in the sense they look like a wand, are waved like a wand and take up as much space as a wand (I presume…)

The list goes on….

Check out our guide to 10 indispensable offices gadgets for more inspiration.

Smiling emojiSmiling emojiWe hope you found this quick guide useful – no doubt there are other ingenious solutions out there. As soon as we find more genuinely useful ones, we’ll be sure to add to this list.

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