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How To Define Space in an Open-Layout Area

Having an open-concept living space is in many homeowners’ wish list. Compared to older-style homes that had spaces compartmentalised, an open-layout floor plan offers more flexibility and a more modern feel overall. Plus, it allows plenty of natural light to enter the home while providing unobstructed views and enabling energy to flow harmoniously within the property.

Now, you can cook dinner, watch the little ones play, and entertain your guests in an area that combines a kitchen, a living area, and a dining space, making everything so much fun and easy. The challenge comes when you want to decorate that spacious, uninterrupted space and make sure you subtly define each area while keeping a cohesive design throughout.

Here are some hints to help you out:

4 Ways to Create Separation in an Open Floor Plan

Use Lighting to Create Separation

Separating each area you want to designate with lighting is one of the easiest ways to get the job done effectively and efficiently. A single chandelier or rectangular pendant over the dining table will instantly create invisible boundaries of your dining space and provide you with the illumination required to enjoy your meals with the family and loved ones. Using coordinating lighting fixtures to separate other areas, such as the kitchen and living room will help maintain a consistent look.

You could consider adorning the kitchen island with a row of pendants, hanging a retro-arc floor lamp or a distinctive drum pendant over the coffee table, and installing recessed or ceiling mounted fixtures to help break up spaces within an open-layout floor plan. You may also complement your choices with under cabinet fixtures (for the kitchen area) as well as table and floor lamps to enhance the space and accommodate all of your family’s lighting needs.

Use Furniture

Before you go on with this idea, it is vital that you take a good look at the layout, the size, the locations for electrical outlets, the placement of Internet and cable connections, and any architectural dividing lines, such as the one from a wood to tile floor, alongside columns. Taking all that into consideration will enable you to determine which and how many separate room functions you need to create.

Then, you can use furniture groupings to define these areas, always ensuring you leave enough space between them so that everybody can easily move within and across these “rooms”. To please your eye, check that all of your furniture is placed away from the perimeter and within the space rather than against the walls. Another interesting way to create visual definition is to bring in freestanding shelving units or decorative folding screens.

Use Bi-fold Doors

Compared to sliding doors and ceiling mounted room dividers, which are also a nice option to take into account, bi-fold doors comprise an ideal solution that can improve the visual appeal of the overall space. You can have yours totally customised so that they fit your space specifically while you can choose between a wide range of materials, heights, lengths, and styles to add as much colour and warmth as you wish.

From frosted glass to wood panelling, with factory-finished hardwood veneer or unfinished real oak veneer, there are many ways to separate spaces within an open-concept floor plan with a set of beautiful, elegant, and stylish bi-fold doors such as these from Vufold.

Choose a Consistent Colour Scheme

Keeping the same colours on your walls throughout the large open-layout floor plan area will simplify things for you. To highlight some architectural features that you may want to turn all eyes on, such as a nice angle or break, or indicate where a “room” begins and ends you could use a subtle variation of the same hue.

You may also pick a cue from your primary seating upholstery and coordinate that with the covers of your breakfast or dining nook or carry the wood tone of the kitchen cabinets into the dining and living room furniture. The idea is to maintain consistency and not mix many shades (you could inject some vibrant colours via the accessories and artwork, though) to create a sense of flow within areas and help each of them maintain its distinct personality.

Extra Tips:

  • Placing rugs strategically is another great way to delineate space. They just need to be large enough to anchor the furniture within each separate area. You may use either coordinating or identical area rugs and have the gap between them creating a handy visual traffic path.
  • Opting for uniform window coverings, be it curtains, drapes, blinds, cellular, plantation shutters, roller shades or whatever else will deliver not only a clean look and the required light/privacy/insulation control but also match your décor style and create an appealing visual effect too.
  • Cohesiveness can also be established via the way you accessorise your space. Keeping accent pieces in the same style does not mean that they necessarily need to be matchy-matchy (the space looks dull and uninteresting), though.

Creating a sense of physical and visual division between the various zones in an open floor plan is no brainer after all! Simply follow any of the methods mentioned above (or all of them) to give your home the appearance of having distinct areas without breaking a sweat.

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