Open floor plans have been around for quite some time. Post the 1990’s especially, open floor plans are being sought after by homeowners, across the globe. Why so? Because open floor plans offer a fresher and better alternative to typical floor plans. While generally, floor plans and houses used to be compartmentalised into separate areas, closed off from each other, open floor plans often have a different approach. Such a layout promotes seamless blending of spaces, combining different parts of the house sensibly to create a single larger space without compromising on utility.
Open floor plans have been welcomed by consumers and designers alike because they help make the most of a space, while making a house feel open and a lot more spacious. Not only does this prove fruitful from a design perspective, but also creates a more comfortable and arid living space for one to enjoy. Open floor plans are a delight to have and design. However, executing an open layout in a home requires due diligence. Typically such a floor plan combines the kitchen, living room and dining area as a whole or in pairs, depending on what’s feasible.
Since the physical division and walls are kept to a minimum, defining and creating a harmonious space poses a challenge. We are here to help you ace the open floor plan, with simple tricks and tips you can follow for your home.
HAVE A STEADY COLOR PALETTE
A steady color palette is essential to designing an appropriate open floor plan. Since there are no divisions or partitions, the different spaces need to flow seamlessly into each other. In such a scenario, having different colors and patterns that clash could prove to be disturbing for the overall aesthetic. It is, thus, suggested that a uniform color theme be opted for open floor plans.
Choosing a single color, helps keep the uniformity and make the space look perfect as one whole entity. If you feel that a single color is monotonous for your taste, then monochrome is your safest bet. It allows you to maintain a consistent theme without deflecting too much, by utilizing hues of the same color to design your home.
PLAN THE SPACE WELL
Planning your space is crucial to creating the right kind of open floor layout. Firstly you have to pay attention to decide what all spaces you are combining, to ensure that they work well together functionally and aesthetically. Each part of a space needs to be planned so as to not overpower the other portions, instead strike a perfect balance. For instance, if you wish to combine your living room, dining area and kitchen, there needs to be a strategic balance amongst how much space is dedicated to each portion.
This is influenced by the amount of space you have and in which area you expect the most foot traffic to help create the right kind and amount of space. This approach needs to be extended to your furniture as well. Picking the right amount, shape and kind of furniture is also dependent on the scale of space you have and what the area needs. It is therefore important to choose and plan wisely.
SYMMETRY IS VITAL
Symmetrical settings and furniture are crucial to preserve the integrity and uniformity in an open layout home. The idea behind applying principles of symmetry to an open floor plan is to create an equilibrium in the design by balancing the counterparts in a space. It helps achieve a balanced look throughout, while giving an illusion of space to the area.
Mirroring furniture and objects is the easiest way to create the simple yet ideal layout. It could be two matching sofa sets placed against each other, or a set of side tables placed opposite to each other, creating a simple, balanced and aesthetically pleasing design that works well too.
UTILISE ARCHITECTURE TO SEPARATE
Architectural features are a subtle yet effective way to divide through spaces in an open layout. While there needs to be a consistency throughout the space, it is equally important to define each space distinctively. Utilizing architecture to do so is fairly easy.
You could switch up the moldings and trims from one space to another to create a cascading effect, or opt for a non conventional partition by installing a rack of shelves, a transparent screen, different false ceilings or even an archway that does not physically separate the room but adds definition that helps one navigate and differentiate between different portions of the space, creating the perfect design.
FLOAT THE FURNITURE
Floating yoru furniture, although not necessary, is a great idea for an open floor plan. What it means to float furniture is to step away from the typical arrangement where furniture is up against walls and planned to align with the walls and corners. Rather, the furniture is arranged in a free floating manner to form clusters around the space, away from the walls.
While this creates some negative space that usually people fear, it actually works well by giving the illusion of added space and making movement around easy. Not to forget, it looks great and also helps define the purpose of each portion with ease.
EMPHASISE WITH LIGHTING
Lighting itself is a vital part to creating the right kind of ambience in the room while ensuring that it is well functional. In an open floor layout especially, lighting can be planned and worked with to create emphasis and definition throughout the great room. You can go about doing so in different ways. Firstly, layering and pairing lights throughout the area in a way that there is no clashing, yet each space has a unique way to create a focal point for itself is important.
Further, light fixtures can be used to draw attention to certain portions effectively. To do so, a heavy chandelier over your living area setup, or perhaps some hanging lights over the kitchen island, can help add an individual character to each space while highlighting it.
ZONE THROUGH FURNITURE
The way that you plan and place your furniture naturally affects the rooms function and aeshteic. Since the open floor has minimum to none ways to define or set apart each space from another, planning your furniture layout smartly can help you create that effect without too much hassle. WHat thai entails is that the furniture is placed in such a way that while set in one whole space, each portion appears separate from each other, for its own set purpose.
You could do so by placing your sofa setting backed against the kitchen area or the dining area, separating it from the rest of the room. Adding a kitchen island, further, can help create diversions through furnishing as it would help distinguish the kitchen area form the rest of the room.
ADD RUGS FOR DEFINITION
Rugs and carpets are a great way to zone the room effectively. Especially if you don't wish your furniture placements to be cut off from each other, rather flow through, rugs can help create the effect without actually cutting off spaces into portions. You could opt for similar rugs to go under the sofa sets, dining areas or even around the kitchen island seating.
For a different look, you could use different patterns and colors assigned to each space, perhaps even create a theme which sets it apart from the rest, while making the space look beautiful and colorful.
BRING YOUR KITCHEN FORWARD
As opposed to conventional closed off ones, kitchens are a recurring feature in most open layouts. Open kitchens are planned to blend seamlessly with the living space, which works great. Anyone working in the kitchen is able to still interact and access the living space with ease. This proves especially great when one is hosting, facilitating an uninterrupted flow of conversation and socialising throughout.
Usually people are wary of bringing the kitchen to the front, but with the right kind of design and layout, kitchens can be the stand out feature in an open space. Open kitchens work well and look extremely modern, proving to be a great fit, especially in open layouts where you can highlight it or even work to blend it with the dining area easily and beautifully.
Overall, open floor plans have been an effective pick for quite some time now. Whether you have a small space or a bigger one, an open layout helps create an arid and spacious effect throughout. Since the literal physical barriers and apritions are not put in, you save a ton of space while creating a home that looks amazing. Follow the above tips while planning your home’s open layout to create a space that is just perfect.