The Best Desks for Small Spaces

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Credit: Lauren Kolyn

Whether you’re looking to economize space in the workplace or an at-home office, selecting a functional and stylish desk is a must. The standard office desk runs about 30 inches deep though, which might be more space than you’re able, or want, to spare (especially if you don’t need room for much more than a laptop and some novelty desk toppers) so here are some skinny desk options to slip into any small workspace.


Poly & Bark Ralston Writing Desk
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Available in ash gray or the ever-popular walnut, these hairpin legs are on point for a tight space or budget. Perfect for a makeshift home office in any area of your house, this desk is just a great decor piece that also happens to be perfect for housing a computer or cozy work space.

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When in doubt, head to IKEA. This wall-mounted option is the ultimate out-of-the way choice, and is actually super versatile—it can be closed when you need more room and has drawers for everyday papers. If you do want to keep it open all the time, there’s room for books, plants, office supplies, and pretty much anything else you need for a functioning home office.

Elmsford Desk
Joss & Main
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This très chic contemporary desk would be the center of attention in an office of any size. The long skinny legs make it look smaller than it is, and at 42 inches long it has plenty of space for whatever you need to get the creative juices flowing. With a white lacquer top and gold metal base, this is a desk you actually won’t mind doing work on, making it the perfect centerpiece for any office.

Cory Folding Desk
Urban Outfitters
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If you really have minimal space, consider this cute folding desk. Made of wood with a traditional design not usually seen at Urban, this desk comes in two finishes and has a little drawer for storing pencils and Post-Its. There’s a small shelf for displaying plants and frames—or you can put a mirror above it and create a double vanity space.


Sergio Desk
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Available in white lacquer or walnut veneer, the sleek design of this curved mid-century desk will round out any workstation. The most visually interesting of the bunch, this desk has a wide drawer and backing with a space between to make room for cords. No more knocking pencils and small objects off the back (I can’t be the only one who does this, right?)

Walnut Floating Desk
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A multifunctional floating desk is a dreamy option for a petite home office. Simply designed with ample space for storage, this desk could also look right at home in a small entryway. It’s made of 100 percent wood, so it will hold up through the years, and each desk is made in Seattle.

Industrial Storage Mini Desk
West Elm
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At a mere 18 inches deep and with “mini” right there in the name, this solid wood desk top with lofted metal legs will save some serious space without compromising style. With contrasting wood and steel components and made to look like a solid block of wood, this desk is a true statement piece.


Walnut Desk with Power Outlet
Crate and Barrel
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Made of solid walnut and walnut veneer, this ’60s inspired desk is distinctly mid-century modern yet can fit well with any decor style. It has three drawers, a sturdy build and is built for the modern hustler—on top of being sleek and gorgeous, it has two power outlets and two USB ports. Sold.

Lacquered Regency Desk
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A truly thin option at just 19 inches deep, this retro-glam desk features four drawers with gorgeous brass and lucite hardware. Just because it’s small doesn’t mean it can’t pack a punch, as evidenced by the oversized handles and clear legs. Inspired by retro glamour, this desk is expensive, but is a standout piece for any home office.

Essentials Desk
Union Wood Co.
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This Canadian-made beauty is on the wide end of skinny at 24 inches deep but is worth every inch. It’s the most traditional and serious of the desks on this list, with a simple solid wood top (you can choose from eight options). Even better: It’s adjustable and can transform into a standing desk.

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This post was originally published on May 13, 2016, and was last updated on March 14, 2020, to reflect current prices and offerings. Samantha Leal also contributed to reporting.

Colleen Murphy


Colleen Murphy is an advertising producer, freelance writer and pop culture junkie. Her dream apartment is Julia Robert’s unbelievable loft in Stepmom.