Open-plan living is an excellent way of maximising available space and is a popular solution for many homes and apartments. Open-plan living can improve the value of your home and make it more appealing to potential buyers, as well as creating a sense of freedom, space, and light. However, it’s also important to balance this with the need to clearly define the purpose of each room – so that they don’t all blend together into an undefined mess.
By selecting the right colour for each purpose or area within your open plan space, you will create visual barriers, even if there are no physical dividers. Colour can also be used to create a specific mood or atmosphere. Lastly, it’s extremely versatile: when you need to change the use of a space or room, you only need to re-paint it and re-arrange the furniture!
Different types of flooring can also be used to link different rooms or areas together or provide contrast between them. For example, an open kitchen design might have a tile floor leading into the living area, which has carpet, laminate, or timber flooring.
The biggest challenge in designing an open-plan living space is zoning. You need to make sure that each area has its own identity and works as a separate space, but that it also flows seamlessly into adjoining spaces.
An easy way to zone your open-plan living space is with clever furniture choices and smart placement. A sofa, for example, can act as a divider between the living room and kitchen areas. Likewise, a large bookcase or shelving unit placed between two rooms can be used to zone an area while maintaining the flow of your design.
But furniture isn’t always enough by itself. Many open-plan living and dining rooms that only have a dining table and sofa to define the spaces still look like one giant hall. What they’re missing is something that really grounds them. A rug in the living room is the easiest way to give a room its own anchor because its linear lines clearly outlines and places a border around to define it as its own space.
It’s not always easy to create a space that flows well, and which also offers privacy and division when necessary. Fortunately, sliding doors provide a great way of temporarily separating different areas within an open-space room, such as a kitchen, dining and living area. They provide flexibility, enabling you to adjust the flow of the space according to your needs. For instance, if it’s just you at home working or watching a movie, you can close off the living area to create a more private and intimate atmosphere. But when you have guests over for dinner, opening the sliding doors allow you to integrate different areas into one large airy space that’s ideal for entertaining.