Four desks for a minimalist work space

Whether you stand or sit while you work, chances are you may be using an office to get your stuff done. But, is it really necessary to have an office anymore? A lot of must-have equipment for just about any work environment now seems a bit obsolete because, well, there’s an app that. For example, you can use a scanner to digitize important documents or you can use an app (like Evernote) to scan and store the items you need to keep.

Like me, you might still prefer having a flat surface to work from or a smaller surface to use for your laptop or tablet. If you plan to minimize your physical work area or to re-design your home office, you don’t have to give your desk up and permanently keep your laptop on your lap while you work. Instead, look for a smaller desk that will still give you the function you need.

These four minimalist desks might be able to help you get stuff done and reclaim more space:


Do you work in the kitchen? Living room? If you tend to move about your home and have no stationary workspace, the HIDEsk might appeal to you. It folds when not in use, which means it can be stored in a closet or under furniture. And, because it’s portable, you can take it wherever work takes you. This desk doesn’t have drawers, so the trade off to gaining more space means you’ll need to bring along your favorite pen or needed office supplies wherever you go.

Image credit: IMM Cologne

HIDEsk is designed to hold your tablet and open slots to help you control your cables and wires. When the desk is no longer needed, you can fold it up and out of the way, transforming it into an easel or standing work area.

Image credit: Noroom

Free Stand

The Free Stand desk, designed by Stephan Copeland, folds flat for easy storage, has a carrying handle, and a surface that’s big enough for your laptop.

The desk adjusts from 20 inches to 27 inches to suit the height of your seating.

Image credits: Coalesse


The XTable looks like a larger version of an ironing board and works in a similar way. It has an x base and a handcrank that you can use to reposition the height. This could work well if you share a workspace, no matter how tall you are. And, you can either sit or stand while you work. The XTable does come with one grommet and has an optional cabinet for storing supplies.

Image credits: Kibisi

Zevaka Table

This desk is designed specifically for students and has several features that will likely appeal to almost anyone. Like the other desks, the Zevaka Table takes up little space. But, unlike the others, it comes with a built-in mini-drawer, a bag hang, and a sleep space for tired students to take a nap on before they get back to work. There’s also a storage slot for a drink.

The sleeping hammock is revealed when the hinged desk surface is lifted.

Image credits: Yaroslav Misonzhnikov

10 Comments for “Four desks for a minimalist work space”

  1. posted by Pluto on

    Can you purchase these in the US? I only see the first for sale (>$300!). How about posting (reasonably priced?) products that we can actually buy and use to help unclutter rather than just something else to add to Piniterest? Bummer!!

  2. posted by Pluto on

    Correction: it is the 2nd (Free Stand) that has a link to purchase for >$300.

  3. posted by Em on

    I think $300 is expensive for a simple desk. Regarding “disposable” I think it also depends on how rough someone is on their furniture; mine would last for years and probably decades but maybe not as long for someone else or a family of rough kids.

  4. posted by jodi on

    I’m with the other commenters – $300 for a desk is pricey.

    Although now I’m curious…Is there such a thing as a “disposable desk?”

  5. posted by jodi on

    P.S. Em – The best desk I ever owned was $3 at a yard sale. I homeschool 3 kids who liked to use the desk during non-school time as a play fort, etc. That desk took a major beating from my kids and was still going strong when we donated the desk. Sometimes quality can be found very cheap. 🙂

  6. posted by Anna on

    The last photo showing the sleeping hammock in use is hilarious. It reminds me of the time I was editing an article on sleep that was so dull I got sleepy myself and put my head down on my existing hard-surfaced desk and took a little nap.

  7. posted by Her from There on

    Re the last desk: if its going to be called a sleep space, it could at least have a padded layer! Thinking caps ON, people! 😉

  8. posted by KaitieKate on

    The XTable is the one that appeals to me. We currently have converted a U-shaped faux-mahogany desk from Staples (bought for $80 at an auction 17 years ago) into a motorized standing desk. That’s great for my dh but when I want a standing desk I find myself working in the kitchen on the counter with my laptop slightly raised on volume from our 3 volume dictionary set.

    Our potential new home is requiring minimizing on our part. In preparation for smaller office space we’ve converted the U-shaped desk to an L-shaped desk (so much for the poor quality of press board and veneer, this one is holding up exceptionally well even being hacked in ways it was never supposed to go together.) But I can’t count on counter space in the new kitchen for me.

    So, while the Xtable looks promising the price is ridiculous.

    The legs look suspiciously like the legs on my music keyboard stand. Sure, they don’t crank up and down and they are slightly smaller than the Xtable legs but it looks like I can add a table top (probably from IKEA or more likely used-IKEA parts) and hack together something for well under $100 (even considering the $40 we paid for the keyboard stand legs in the first place.)

    If I choose a heavy enough top that doesn’t need fastening down, I can collapse the desk and store it out of the way when my ‘office’ is being used as a guest bedroom. Or I could just lower it down to coffee table height and put it in the living room. Or raise it to eating table height and use it in a wide hall as a bistro dining space.

  9. posted by Erin Doland on

    @jodi — I love finding quality items at garage/yard sales! It’s the quality stuff that you can resell — and get for a good deal second hand. But, as a website, we can’t write about one item we found at a garage sale because 1. the sale will be over by the time the post goes live, 2. there is only one of those items, and 3. it’s pretty much just rubbing it in the face of everyone on the site, “Hey! Look what I bought that you can’t have!” Whereas, with items in stores, people can buy the item if they want it. Or, they can be inspired to create their own or hunt down something similar at a second-hand sale. They can see features they like and also features they might not like. Whenever we post things people can’t buy, they complain … similar to the comment above from @Pluto wishing all the items we featured were available for purchase. (The last one is only a concept and can’t be purchased in any store, but the others could be sourced through an interior designer.) I made the mistake of letting Deb include it and will try my best to not let that happen again without it being clear it is just a concept piece.

  10. posted by Rita on

    I like to see new ideas and be inspired by them. So I am happy to see items that are not in production or out of my price range. I am planning to steal Erin’s idea from a few months ago to use an ironing board as a standing desk once I get my office a bit more decluttered.

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