british manufactured office furniture

Superb quality British manufacture and craftsmanship

Author: lesleyjones

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Recent work: from shabby to chic

We recently refurbished over 100 chairs for a school in Berkshire. Reupholstery is a cost-effective alternative to buying new, and it’s better for the environment too!

If your seating is looking tired and worn, get in touch with us to discuss how we can breathe new life into it.

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Everything you need to know about organising your home office

Widespread home-working is set to continue for the rest of 2020 and beyond, but for many of us it can be hard to find a calm, peaceful spot to work in our busy homes. However, if you take the time to declutter your workspace and keep it tidy, you’ll find it easier to focus and get tasks finished. We’ve put together a few tips for creating a calm workspace, whether you’re working from a full home office or just a corner of your kitchen table.

  1. Get rid of everything you don’t need

Sounds obvious, but how many of us have old magazines and dried-up biros lurking about and taking up valuable space? Go through everything in your home office and if you no longer need it, get rid. Recycle it, rehome it or, as a last resort, bin it.

  1. Organise and sort everything else

Once you know what you’re keeping, it can be sorted and tidied. A tidy environment promotes a calm, productive mindset, and means you won’t waste time turning the room upside down every time you need to find something. Storage pots and desk drawer dividers are great for tidying away stationery, while a small desktop filing shelf is ideal for storing paperwork and notebooks. Depending on your requirements and space, it might be worth buying a filing cabinet or desk pedestal. If you’re investing in a new desk, you might want to choose one with built-in drawers.

  1. Tidy as you go

Take five minutes before lunch, and again at the end of the day, to clear your work area. Coming back to a tidy, ordered desk in the morning immediately puts you in a positive, calm state of mind to start your day.

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Stay healthy, stay active with a sit-stand desk

Sit-stand desks have been steadily growing in popularity recently, and with good reason. Changing positions during your working day is good for your back and your joints, as well as improving your mood and increasing productivity. In short, they’re great for physical and mental health.

Recently, the sit-stand desk has become even more important. Current social distancing regulations mean it may be harder to stretch and move by having a walk around the office. A sit-stand desk allows you to stay active without leaving your personal space.

A row of white sit-stand desks and black and yellow chairs

HSI Furniture has a range of sit-stand desks in various sizes, to suit all workspaces. We also supply desk converters – a cost-effective way to raise up your monitor, keyboard and mouse so you can stand up at your existing desk. Give us a call on 0118 9883009 for more information, advice or a free quotation.

Monitor and keyboard on a desk converter

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How a change of colour could transform your office

Can the colour of your office décor and furniture improve productivity and happiness? Studies suggest this could be the case, with different colours linked to increased focus, thought and creativity.

Blue – An intellectual colour that inspires trust, efficiency and logical thought. Great for helping people to focus and stretch their minds.

Yellow – Represents creativity, optimism and openness. Try adding some yellow furniture or décor to areas where imagination and innovation are required, such as the art or marketing department.

Red – A physical colour that encourages strength and excitement. A good addition to areas where physical work takes place, such as a gym, workshop or warehouse.

Green – The colour of nature, and one which inspires balance and restoration. It’s commonly found in medical settings.

Orange – Creates a feeling of comfort by combining the optimism of yellow with the energy of red. It’s inviting and joyful, so often used in communal and breakout areas to encourage relationship building and laid-back interaction.

Purple – A rich, sumptuous colour which is often found in luxury spas and salons. Purple can also encourage deep thought and spirituality.


Of course, the colours you choose will depend hugely on the type of business you do, your existing corporate colours, the size of your office and of course personal preference!

If your office could do with a change of colour, HSI Furniture can help you do it without spending a fortune. We can reupholster your existing office chairs and other furniture in a different colour to completely transform the look of your workspace. Looking to buy new? We’ve got a huge selection of traditional and contemporary furniture to suit any environment. Give us a call on 0118 9883009 to start your office transformation.


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Stay safe at work – tips for social distancing and mental health

As lockdown eases, many of you will be welcoming more employees and colleagues back to work over the coming weeks. Help to reduce the spread of infection with these tips.

First and foremost – stick to social distancing guidelines. You could change the layout of your workspace to create a one-way system, or create more space between desks. Desk screens and floor screens are a great way to reduce contact while still allowing colleagues to communicate.

Visual reminders are key. Make sure you have signage to remind your teams to keep their distance and wash their hands.

If possible, introduce a no visitor policy, or if that’s not possible, ensure that visitors come to site by prior appointment only. Install hand sanitiser stations at entrances.

Consider introducing flexible work hours, or staggered start and finish times, to minimise the number of people in the office at any given time.

Add clear screen or dividers in communal areas so people can still socialise and collaborate.

Talk to your colleagues about mental health – this is a stressful time for everyone, and they will most likely have a range of concerns, whether it’s the welfare of vulnerable loved ones, or trying to homeschool children while still getting their job done. Be flexible, and encourage virtual meetings (or distanced face-to-face meetings) just to chat and catch up, rather than just discussing work issues.

HSI Furniture has a range of desk screens, floor screens and pods to help you and your colleagues adapt to this “new normal”. To find out more, visit the Desks & Screens section of our website, or email us at

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Lockdown is easing – enjoy socialising again!

Lockdown is easing, and we can now visit friends in their gardens as long as we maintain social distancing. It’s likely that more restaurants and hotels will start offering outdoor dining over the next few weeks too. Whether you’re a business owner planning a reopening, or you simply want to relax in your garden with friends, make the most of this new freedom with new garden furniture.

HSI Furniture can supply and deliver a huge range of outdoor furniture, including chairs, tables and sofas. We’ve got some new, on-trend designs this season, as well as all the classic ranges. So whatever your style, you can enjoy socialising again with a little bit of help from us.

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Top tips for working from home

The coronavirus pandemic has had a massive impact on every aspect of our lives, including the way we work. You may have been launched into home-working for the very first time, with little guidance on how to set up a comfortable working space, or you might be struggling to fit in work around home-schooling your kids. Here are a few tips from HSI on how to be productive, comfortable and positive while working from home.


Get dressed

I know, who wants to put proper clothes on when we have a legitimate reason to spend all day in pajamas? But getting dressed will help you mentally prepare for the day, and draw a line between you-time and work-time, making it easier to focus.

Wooden desk with built-in storage drawers

Set up a comfortable, quiet working area

You won’t get much done if you’re slumped on the sofa, especially if the temptation of the TV remote is too much to resist, and it won’t be good for your back either. Ideally, you want to set up a home office, perhaps in the spare room, where you won’t be disturbed. It’s worth investing in a decent office chair and desk – it’ll improve your posture and reduce the strain on your muscles and joints. If you haven’t got space for a full home office, find a quiet space where you can sit comfortably at a table. If you’re short on space, try an ergonomic stool rather than a swivel chair.

Purple desk chair with arms

Stick to a schedule

You’ll be much more productive if you try and stick to your regular working schedule. Wake up at your normal time, get dressed and get started. Make sure you take a proper break at lunchtime too. Move away from your working area and eat your lunch elsewhere or, even better, go for a walk. If you’re trying to balance work and childcare, set up a rota with your partner so that one of you works while the other watches the kids. You could swap over every two hours, or whatever works for you.

Two Rockit rocking stools in different colours

Plan out your day

When you’re working from home, you have to be your own task manager. First thing in the morning, make a list of everything you want to get done during the day, and keep referring back to it. It’ll help to keep you focused, rather than checking social media one more time because there’s no one there to stop you. Plus, it’s quite satisfying ticking off task after task on your list.

Desk chair with blue seat and black mesh back

Stay connected

Working from home can feel rather lonely if you’re used to the buzz and camaraderie of a busy workplace. Check in with your colleagues using video calls rather than just email, if you can – seeing your workmates’ faces will help you feel more connected and motivated.

Computer screen and keyboard raised up on a desk converter

Log off and enjoy your evening

Don’t let the boundaries between work life and personal life become blurred just because they’re taking place in the same house. If you’re sitting on the sofa scrolling through work emails at 10pm, you never truly get to switch off. Set a time to finish work for the day, switch off your laptop and relax. It might help to change out of your “work” clothes, take a shower or head outside for some fresh air – anything that helps you draw a clear line between your working day and your evening.

White pedestal storage

HSI stock a huge range of office chairs, desks, stools and storage options to create your perfect home office and see you through these strange times. Email us at to find out more.

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Are you sitting correctly?

If you spend the majority of your working life sitting at a desk, correct posture is really important. If your chair and screen are in the right positions it can help to reduce strain on your back, eyes and ligaments. Getting it wrong puts extra pressure on your muscles and discs, and can lead to backache and fatigue.

So how can you ensure you’re sitting correctly? Sit in your chair, relax your shoulders and look at your screen. Your elbows should be slightly higher than the desk surface and your thighs should be at a 90-95 degree angle to your upper body. Your feet should be flat on the floor and your eyes should be in line with the top of your screen. Adjust your chair and screen height until you’re in the right position. If your feet still aren’t resting flat on the floor, you may need a footrest.

Then, adjust the horizontal part of your seat – that’s the bit you actually sit on – until you are sitting firmly and comfortably against the back pad. You should have a small gap between the front of the seat and the back of your knees.

Now adjust the height of the backrest so that it sits in the small of your back. This is crucial for providing lumbar support and maintaining the natural inward curve of your lower spine.

Put your arms in your regular working position, for example typing on a keyboard or moving a mouse. They should be ever so slightly higher than your work surface.

Finally, release your chair’s locking mechanisms – seat and back – to allow it to move freely. As the chair moves, it will encourage your muscles to work, which helps your circulation.

We offer a wide range of ergonomic chairs from leading brands, all designed to ensure your work environment is comfortable. With a variety of fabric options available, as well as free delivery and installation (T&Cs apply), you’ll be sure to find an option that complements your existing office design and budget.

Click here to find out more. For a free quote or advice, get in touch on 0118 9883009 or email us at

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Office Furniture: Why Renovate?

Swivel task chair before and after reupholstering

For every company, there comes a point when things need a refresh. When that dreaded day arrives, it can feel like an overwhelming obstacle. You may not have enough money left in the budget to buy brand new, or enough time to dispose of all your old furniture. On the other hand, it’s not going to help your company’s image or sales if your clients have to sit on ripped, shabby chairs during pitches and meetings. The fact is, office updates are an essential part of good business. It keeps things modern, fresh and clean, and makes a good first impression on potential customers. With us, refreshing your office furniture doesn’t have to be a huge project to tackle. Choose to renovate your office furniture and you’ll save time, money, and the environment too.

Style Savvy

Almost any item can be reupholstered and given a new life. Office chairs, reception sofas and general seating are all perfect candidates. The beauty of our service is in its versatility. We provide a large selection of high quality fabrics – including leather – with different colours and patterns to choose from. You can also provide your own fabric. Existing furniture can be further refreshed with replacement arms, new seats and backs, and antistatic castors. Have a look at our before and after photos to see what we can do.

Cost Effective

Office furniture renovation can cut your expenses by up to 50%! As well as the obvious saving (no need to buy new furniture) you’ll also be eliminating costly disposal fees for your old furniture. We offer free advice and quotes to get you started, as well as free delivery within a 50 mile radius of Reading (T&Cs apply). Standard turnaround time is 7-10 business days, but our experienced professionals may be able to complete in a quicker timeframe if required. When it comes to French polishing, the job can be done on site in your office! Thorough cleaning is also covered in the cost so that your furniture is totally transformed. And the best news? All of these services are covered by a 12-month warranty, so you can rest easy knowing your pieces will stay intact.

Eco Friendly

As if you needed another reason to reupholster, here’s a great one: you’ll be reducing your carbon footprint and your company’s impact on the environment. In the UK alone, more than 22 million items of furniture are thrown out each year, creating a huge amount of carbon dioxide emissions that could be avoided if we simply upcycled old or tired items. What’s more, keeping these items out of landfill prevents additional waste from being created during the manufacture of replacement items. When you renovate your furniture, you’re not only driving business and saving money, you’re also having a positive impact on our planet.

Ready to give your furniture a new lease of life?

Click here or call us on 0118 9883009 to talk to us about office furniture renovation and reupholstering.