Pocket living is new trend in interior design says East Midlands architect

A growing new trend in interior layout design has been identified following the rise in working from home.

Tuesday, 8th June 2021, 11:25 am

With people urged to work from home while they can during the coronavirus pandemic, an East Midlands architectural firm says it has found a change in people’s desired housing layouts.

Acres Architects has identified pocket living as growing in popularity.

The term, which has also been dubbed Open Plan 2.0 by the Nottingham-based architectural practice, describes a move away from the fully open-plan designs developers and householders have come to favour in recent years.

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Instead, while open-plan areas remain important, people are now demanding additional “pockets” of functional office space are created to enable home workers to escape other distractions.

Acres says it has seen an increase in requests for separate working spaces – from garden office designs to reassigned dining rooms and studies under stairs.

Edward Acres, Acres founder and managing director, said: “This new trend towards pocket living is a consideration we are now putting forward to any new development scheme.

“We’re not exactly going backwards from open plan to what we saw previously, but the trend is evolving.

Acres Architects says working from home has driven a desire for separate home offices, or 'pockets' of functional space away from the popular open-plan style of interior design.
Acres Architects says working from home has driven a desire for separate home offices, or 'pockets' of functional space away from the popular open-plan style of interior design.

“The working-from-home situation has created one of the biggest game-changers in residential architecture we’ve seen for a while.

“Whether it’s apartments, mansions or typical family homes, people are asking for fully functioning office spaces where they can shut themselves away from everything else.”

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Mr Acres said his firm’s expertise was increasingly being sought in properties where space was a premium, while in more expensive homes, where owners previously wanted a library or snooker room, they are now requesting office spaces.

He said: “Two people at home could easily be taking work calls at the same time, so it’s important acoustics are considered as much as the actual space function.

“Children might get home from school at 3pm or so, but the working day is still going on, so having a laptop on the kitchen table is not the best way to focus.”

He said the trend for pocket spaces was also important for people’s mental health and helping to ensure a defined separation between work and home life.

Mr Acres said: “This is all about moving with the times. No trend lasts forever, but pocket living is certainly a new trend as a result of Covid.”

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