How to Make Office Partitions

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Office partitions are used most commonly in large office spaces to create a sense of privacy for employees. Cubicles are partitions that only stand partway between the floor and ceiling. These partitions allow for a sense of privacy, while still allowing employees to easily talk with one another and supervisors to easily see what's happening in the office. However, you can also install full partitions that reach floor to ceiling or partitions that can be removed when they are not needed to create a more open space. Making your own partitions requires basic carpentry skills and a bit of creativity.

Assess your space. Ask yourself whether you need full or half partitions. If you are working at home and need to create a partition to separate your work space from household living space, determine how big of a partition you need and whether you want it to be removable or a permanent feature.

Create a frame. Five pieces of wood are all you need to create a basic frame for your partition. Cut five pieces of wood into equal lengths. Attach four pieces of wood together, end to end, into a square. Attach each piece of wood to the other with two nails. Place your fifth piece of wood horizontally within the square. Use nails to secure this final piece of wood. This will create a sturdy frame. Attach plywood to both sides of the frame using screws and a drill to create a frame that can be decorated with felt or other decorative material.

Secure the partition to the wall or floor. Drill screws diagonally through the plywood and supporting wood frame into the wall or floor. These screws can be removed if you need to move the partition. If you are not comfortable putting screws into your floor or ceiling, you can weight the partition prior to attaching the plywood to the frame. Use socks filled with sand or another heavy material. Place on the piece of wood that creates the base of the frame and then secure the plywood. This will help keep the partition from falling over easily if bumped.

Consider creative alternatives. You do not necessarily need to construct your own partition. Particularly for home offices, be creative with how you separate your space from the rest of the house. A bookcase makes a good partition. Store binders, books and other work supplies on the shelves facing your work space and decorate the back of the bookshelf with a framed picture, poster or fabric. A tall, expandable picture frame screen can also serve as a partition. These screens usually come with three or five tall, attached panels with space for pictures on each panel. Fill those pictures frames with family photos, exotic places you have visited or would like to visit, or inspirational quotes.


  • In a traditional office setting, talk with your employees about what type of work space would suit them. Partitions can create sterile environments where employees feel separated from one another. To boost morale, allow employees to give input on how to best divide up the work space.


  • Remember to place any partition away from heaters and air conditioning vents.


About the Author

Erika Sanders has been writing since 1997. She teaches writing at the Washington State Reformatory and edits the monthly newsletter for the Collaborative on Health and the Environment, a national nonprofit organization. She received her Master of Fine Arts in fiction from the Solstice Program at Pine Manor College in Boston.

Photo Credits

  • Chad Mcdermott/Hemera/Getty Images