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Let's be honest here: A good desk can be the difference between feeling like you're slaving away or feeling like a polished, put-together professional. We've all felt that pang of envy looking across at a coworker's meticulous menagerie of succulents, scented candles, and tasteful organizational tools while our own workspace was cluttered with piles of paper, empty Snickers wrappers, and (somewhere???) a fraying laptop charger.
Upgrading your at-home workspace can feel like an indulgence, but we're firm believers that it makes you a better, more focused human on those occasions when you do have to bring your work home with you ... or when you're finally ready to launch the side hustle that will catapult you to stardom. Here are our favorite desks that are compact enough to fit in even the most diminutive walk-up, so even those without a dedicated home office can get in on the action. From modern wall-mounted options to adorable miniaturized takes on classic silhouettes, these desks might just shift your entire mindset around working from home. (And if you end up using your new desk exclusively to write thank you notes once a year, well, that's okay too.)
Do a double take: this ultra-minimalist desk actually only has two legs, and mounts to the wall at the back, so there's truly nothing unnecessary holding you back. It's also available with or without a single drawer, if you're really trying to pare back.
Perfect for apartment living, West Elm has shrunken the classic midcentury secretary desk so it's only 28" wide and 15" deep — small enough to fit in any corner. (We'd even perch a carafe on top and use it as a nightstand.)
A little detail goes a long way. This solid mango wood piece offers a surprising amount of storage, with hidden compartments and trap doors inside for stashing pencils and papers. (And really, who doesn't love a secret compartment?)
Go ahead and find a better solid wood desk for the price — we'll wait. This handsome piece feels elevated and unexpected with its two-tone coloring and midcentury-meets-modern tapered legs.
We're calling it now — this is the coolest way to bring the buzzy rattan trend into your home. Picture this petite piece tucked in a corner of the bedroom or guest room, doubling as concealed storage.
When all else fails, go wall-mounted. While this desk is described by Industry West as "large," it won't overcrowd even the tightest space thanks to its clever wall-mounted design that extends just 14.5" into the room when closed. Plus, the leather drawer pulls feel fancy.
A little bit boho but undeniably versatile, this small desk packs a punch style-wise with textured drawers in bright, crisp white — just the thing to get your creativity flowing. (Plus, it transitions nicely into a sleek entryway table when not in use.)
Another wall-mounted fave, this substantial style from Horne has pretty much endless possibilities — we could see it doing double-duty as a landing pad in the front hall, or installed beside the bar cart as an extra surface for hosting cocktail hour.
Just because you're getting to work, doesn't mean your desk has to feel serious and stuffy. PBteen's glam gilded version adds a hint of shine to any up-and-coming girlboss's office.
What this desk lacks in storage, it more than makes up for in versatility. Designed to maximize space for Poppin's colorful rolling files underneath, its understated frame feels cheerful in this trendy red-pink hue — and we can't resist the jaunty angle of the legs, too.
Another space-saving tactic we love — opt for a combined bookshelf and desk for a piece that you can keep in the living room without sacrificing added space (or style). You can even keep a low-profile rolling stool tucked underneath so you're always ready to pen whatever comes to mind.
Emily Bihl is a freelance writer and sometimes-songwriter who can invariably be found rearranging furniture in a domicile somewhere along the Mississippi River. She lives with her black labrador Selkie and a small army of homemade ceramics, and has not willingly closed a browser tab since 2011.