How to Organize an L-Shaped Desk (Correctly & Optimally)

To organize an L-shaped desk:

  • Find the right place in the room
  • Take a minimalist approach
  • Focus on under desk mounting and storage
  • Crackdown on cable management
  • Keep items in your neutral reach zone
  • Optimize the space depending on your use

This style of desk works by allowing you more space to keep items at hand, but it’s better to keep as much off the surface as possible.

Keep reading as we explore the ideal ways to organize an L-shaped desk, including how to optimize the space for work and gaming.

How to Organize an L-Shaped Desk

How to Organize an L-Shaped Desk for Any Occasion

Regardless of how you intend to use your L-shaped desk, it is important to keep the surface free from clutter and take advantage of the irregular shape.

An L-shaped desk that is positioned well and kept clear allows you to focus on organizing the tools that matter.

Keeping other items close at hand is important but secondary to accommodating your daily tools.

Find the Right Position:

Start by taking the time to find the right spot in your room or office for your L-shaped desk. Make sure there is nothing in the area that can interfere with the desk, including:

  • Low hanging shelves
  • Doors
  • Windows
  • Cabinets
  • Appliances

Alternatively, look for features that can help you keep items off your desk surface.

If you won’t get distracted by a nearby window, the windowsill can be the perfect place to keep plants close but off your desk.

Consider other details such as available sockets, sunlight glare off your monitors, or potential distractions.

If you’re working in a small space, keep your L-shaped desk tucked away in a corner to maximize the available area.

Read More >> Top 5 Best Farmhouse L-Shaped Desks (2022 Review)

Take a Minimalistic Approach:

A common misconception is that an L-shaped desk can accommodate more items on the surface. While you may have more surface area than on a traditional desk, desks of this style are better for keeping everything you need close at hand.

To maximize this function, take some inspiration from the minimalistic style and limit what sits on your desk surface. Keep anything that you don’t use frequently off the desk and set it aside so you can find somewhere else to store them.

This applies to any storage options you have on the desk surface as well. If you keep file organizers on the desktop, consider moving them so you can focus on what you use regularly.

You can keep a few decorative items, but present them in moderation. Pictures and plaques may do better on the wall.

Under Desk Mounting and Storage:

There are a variety of options for mounting items to the bottom of your desk. Consider adding to your L-shaped desk to keep items off the surface, such as:

  • Routers
  • Keyboard trays
  • Attached cup holders
  • Under desk headphone mounts

Use drawers that fit under the desk to keep supplies close at hand. While you do not need to keep everything on the surface of your desk, it helps to keep some things tucked away. Use caddies or dividers to split up the drawers for:

  • Pens or pencils
  • Paper
  • Notepads
  • Rulers
  • Paperclips
  • Folders
  • Envelopes
  • Stamps

Alternatively, drawers that are the same height as your desk can expand your workspace instead of compromising the available area. This works well to create a cohesive appearance and provide additional storage space.

Crack Down on Cable Management:

Finding an effective cable management solution is one of the best things you can do to organize an L-shaped desk. 

Start by limiting the cords you have on your desk. If possible, opt for wireless peripherals like keyboards, mice, and even printers. This also makes it easier to move these items around to maximize your potential workspace and adjust as needed.

Position your desk as close to a socket as possible to limit the cord length, then organize what is left over.

Consider cable clips or ties to wrangle excessive cord length and prevent them from dangling from the desk surface. Look for or install grommets on the desk surface to route the cables underneath, then collect them in a basket attached to the bottom of the desk.

Alternatively, you can route cables with sleeves or tubing if you need more room to reach your socket.

Keep Items in Neutral Reach:

The area that you can grab items from with minimal effort is your neutral reach zone. An L-shaped desk has a design that capitalizes on this reach, and it is important to take advantage of this feature,

Keep anything that you need to use regularly within this zone, including:

  • Your keyboard and mouse
  • Phone and/or charging dock
  • Controllers
  • Lamps
  • Work materials

The area beyond is where you should put items that do not require a hands-on approach, such as your monitors, CPU, and any decorations.

How to Organize an L-Shaped Desk

How to Organize an L-Shaped Desk for Proper Work Flow

L-shaped desks are great in workspaces, both at home and in a traditional office. They can break up the work area into computer and writing spaces, but you need to get a handle on what you need from the area to optimize the organization.

By accommodating the items you need to store and taking advantage of existing features, it is easy to organize the area effectively.

Identify Your Work Flow Direction:

Most people have a left-to-right workflow direction, but this is not a hard-fast rule. This can change depending on personal preference, and it’s common for left-handed individuals to work in the opposite direction.

To identify your workflow direction, think about how you would set up an assembly line process. When you start a project, would you rather pass it off to the right or the left?

Once you determine your workflow direction, organize your desk space to match this preference. If you work left to right, your computer should sit on the left side and you should have all your finishing materials to the right. Flip this for the alternative situation.

Read More >> Top 5 Best Rustic L-Shaped Desks (2022 Review)

Consider Storage Requirements

Take inventory of everything that you need to store for your workspace. While you want to keep commonly used items close at hand, you need to have a storage solution for all other materials. Things to consider include:

  • Writing utensils
  • Stationary
  • Physical documents
  • Logbooks
  • Folders

Take advantage of existing features on your desk or in your room first, such as shelving or drawers. Some L-shaped desks feature a hutch on one side that offers plenty of room for these items.

Beyond this, look for drawers or cabinets that fit under the desk or flush with its height. Storage solutions that are taller work, but they may throw off the appearance of the desk.

Utilize Wall Storage

This works well if you have a wall close to your work area. Wall storage solutions keep your items close at hand without putting them away or taking up desk space.

Examples of wall storage include:

  • Shadow boards
  • Pegboards
  • Hanging file systems
  • Magnetic dry erase boards

Keeping cups or baskets on the wall lets you keep tools such as pens or scissors within reach. This type of storage is also great for individuals that struggle with object permanence and do better when materials are not out of sight (and therefore out of mind).

How to Organize an L-Shaped Desk for Gaming

Many gamers prefer L-shaped desks because they keep everything close at hand and offer plenty of space for extra monitors, consoles, and peripherals.

You may not need to worry about paperwork or writing utensils, but it is still important to come up with an appropriate method of organization.

Streamers can take advantage of keeping stream desks and other controls within arm’s reach, and learning how to organize the desk for this application helps you get the most use out of it.

Monitor Position

Many gaming setups use multiple monitors, and the corner of an L-shaped desk is perfect to further the immersive experience.

You can organize 2 or 3 monitors in the corner to surround yourself with visual media.

It is important to pay attention to how far you sit from the monitors in this position.

It's difficult to maintain the proper distance of about 20 inches, so set the monitors back as far as possible in this arrangement.

CPU and Console Position

Consider whether you want your CPU on the desk or the floor. There are risks and benefits to both positions beyond the organization, so you want to make this decision before creating a layout for your L-shaped desk.

CPU stands can free up desk space while protecting your tower, but if you want to keep it on the surface, then set it to the side.

This frees up your neutral reach area for items you need to interact with.

Consoles can be positioned in the same area. You can also set them on shelving, mount them to the wall, or look for shelves that mount to the bottom of your desk.

Keeping your L-shaped desk free of clutter lets you maximize its layout and allows you to optimize the organization.

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Darryl Higgins

Hi, I'm Darryl. I made this site to help share information & reviews about ergonomic desks, chairs & accessories to help others who want to work more comfortably. Learn more about my journey by reading my bio here. Enjoy!
Picture of Darryl Higgins

Darryl Higgins

Hi, I'm Darryl. I made this site to help share information & reviews about ergonomic desks, chairs & accessories to help others who want to work more comfortably. Learn more about my journey by reading my bio here. Enjoy!

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