Long before Jack Nicholson’s character got carried away with the idea of a balanced work life in The Shining, the prolific Irish novelist Maria Edgeworth had concluded that “all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy, but all play and no work makes Jack a mere toy.”
The days are growing noticeably shorter, meaning the inevitable winter work doldrums are right around the corner. There’s no better time to incorporate a little cheerful fun in to your work day, so we’ve rounded up some of the most clever furniture designs to cure seasonal office melancholia. From a swing set that doubles as a conference table to a lush green rug mimicking the pastoral picnic environs of hot summer nights gone by, click through to check out nine designs guaranteed to add a little whoopee to your work day.
Swing-Set Conference Table by Chris Duffy for Duffy London
Image credit: Duffy London via Bloomberg BusinessWeek
Set meetings in motion with this grown-up swing set that does double duty as a conference table. Are you wondering how hard you can actually swing? Duffy London’s website explains that “the frame may support robust swinging, but don’t get too carried away — you’ll just crash into the table.” Right, of course.
Ping-Pong Conference Table by poppin.
Image credit: poppin.
The pleasure of play combined with the sorrow of work in one fantastic piece of furniture. Featuring a glossy top surface and concealed drawers for storing office supplies, paddles and balls, this table instantly transforms into the ultimate ping-pong play arena for instant fun after a not-so-fun meeting.
Marbelous by Ontwerpduo
Image credit: Ontwerpduo
Dutch design firm Ontwerpduo invented this functional woodcarving to bring the fun of childhood to a more adult context. Be the envy of the office with this life size marble maze that screams: play with me.
Pinball Table by the Maxwell Furniture Company
Image via Saddle the Rats
If you have to sit at a desk all day, at the very least let that desk have a built-in pinball machine.
Post-it Desk by Soup Studio
Image credit: Soup Studio
Italian design firm Soup Studio says that this giant Post-it pad is “an immediate support for the thoughts that pass through a designer’s head.” Recommended as the perfect work surface for creative types, this desk invites you to write all over it all the time. Let the fun begin.
My Desk by Miguel Mestre
Image credit: Rui Valido via Miguel Mestre
Another genius design that lets you do what you weren’t allowed to do as a kid: scribble and doodle all over it to your heart’s content.
Adaptable work desks/ entertaining game tables by Aberrant Architecture
Images via inhabitat
Work space by day, pub game by night (or day).
Pasturelands Rug by Alexandra Kehayoglou
Image credit: Alexandra Kehayoglou
Start a weekly office picnic on this groovy green recycled rug, bringing the outdoors in every single day.
Isukebo Skate Chair by Rollingfoot
Images via: Cool Things
Japanese skateboard company Rollingfoot created this skating chair for avid skateboarders and bored business people. Ride around the office without leaving your seat.