There are certain projects where open-plan living just makes sense – lofts, barn conversions, modern villas. But, even amongst townhouses, urban apartments, and newly built grand mansions, the style is increasing more and more. However, Whether it is better interaction between public spaces or better flow between areas of the home or more light. The concept of open-plan living areas has many benefits.
Merits of Open-Plan Living
Open-plan living provides huge amounts of flexibility within an inviting and social space. It also enhances spatial perception meaning smaller rooms appear far more substantial. Through removing interior walls and partitions, natural light is in abundance which reduces dead spaces and dark corners.
Creating a Fluid and a Definite Place
The use of rugs beneath furniture groupings can be a good technique in denoting zones within a larger area. Overhead lighting such as decorative pendants can also utilize to visually draw your eye towards the center point of a space. These places include areas such as dining or living areas. Circulation is crucial when designing open-plan living. However, one must ensure there is an open floor space to move freely around larger furniture groupings.
Tips for Making Open-Plan Living Spaces Inviting
A good technique in creating warm and intimate spaces is to allow for sufficient low-level ambient lighting within zones. This can be done by focusing on things such as table and floor lamps. It is also important to create smaller areas within areas so the overall space doesn’t feel cavernous. The use of soft furnishings and tactile textures will also entice you into space. Don’t neglect the wall surfaces – the use of artwork can add extra layering which makes any residence feel more homely.
Smart Furniture Arrangement in Open-Plan Living Spaces
It’s important to create areas within areas so the interior has depth. Orientation should also be noticeable and sensible. It’s also good practice to arrange furniture in such a way that allows an invitation point within a grouping. If the back of a sofa is in the middle of a room and visually heavy or displeasing. However, the placement of an attractive console table behind the sofa can communicate with space beyond. Also, serve as a surface to layer up with beautiful objects.
Furnituning Scale in Open-Plan Spaces
It is always important to select items that are appropriately scaled in the room. Within a larger space, especially if there is a generous ceiling height, furniture should be grounded and not too spindly to counter [and] balance the room volume. Avoid placing large solid objects in the center of the space that might obstruct your view across the room. Remember, scale guides great design!
Styles for Open-Plan Spaces
The style of furniture and furnishings really comes down to client or designer flair, however, it’s important that whatever style is chosen complements the base build and interior architecture.
There should be a visual link or cohesiveness from space to space… more of a language rather than a specific style. You can introduce interest and eclecticism through accessorizing, cushions and drapery, smaller furniture accents, and artwork, whilst larger items could be slightly more paired back.
Are there some rooms that shouldn’t be included?
I guess the obvious answer would be bedroom and en suite, however, if you are wanting to maintain an open plan master suite in the same room as the living space, we would strongly suggest keeping the en suite as a separate partitioned room. Dressing rooms are also difficult to keep tidy so best to conceal.
Advice Related to Someone Considering Bedroom or Office as an Open Space
We suggest treating a home study as a pod or a room within a room, especially if it benefits from a natural lighting source i.e. [a] window. You can then leave the door in an open position or shut when extra privacy is needed.
Tips for Transitioning
We like to refer to this as a “liminal” space, where a transition or transformation takes place – the area between the ‘what was’ and the ‘next’, like an opera overture. This is the perfect opportunity to place a console table with lamp or artwork in the hallway to create a pause moment and visual link to transition from your social to private zones.
Problem with Open-Plan Living Spaces
Acoustic layering through the use of soft furnishings such as rugs is a good way to manage and absorb sound. A decorative screen/fretwork used as a room divider can create a private space [or] nook whilst maintaining a visual link to the rest of the space without introducing solid partitions. Discreet sliding or folding doors could also be used to close off certain areas when required i.e. [a] kitchen or dining room.
This is all about the trends of Open-Plan Spaces.