Open Floor Plans Are Popular, But Can Be Noisy and Lacking Direction

Partition used to dive an open space
Photo: Gorynne Pless (image from Houzz)

There’s a lot to love about open floor plans. They are great for entertaining, making a home feel more spacious, and even for keeping an eye on the kids while you cook or tend to something in an adjacent room.

However, open floor plans can have some downsides. They can make your home feel noisy, and if you aren’t careful, one room can easily bleed into another leading to a home that feels directionless and scattered. This slow “room creep” happens when spaces lack a distinctive purpose and style.

Partitions are the best way to bring order and create a unique aesthetic for different spaces within an open floor plan. Partitions can be physical divisions as well as stylistic changes that help create distinct, useable areas.

Partition Options for Open Spaces

Here are some ideas for dividing a room while still allowing for an open floor plan feel:

Open Shelving: An open book shelf or cubed shelving is an easy and inexpensive way to create a flexible divider between spaces. Open shelving helps gives the feeling of two rooms, without a wall.

Don’t fill cubed spaces or shelving to capacity. The goal is for the shelving to divide the space without feeling cluttered. Leaving open spaces is critical to maintaining the spacious, open-feel of your home’s floor plan and design.

Partition Cabinetry: Similar to open shelving, free-standing cabinetry works as a divider, a storage solution, and a decorative piece of furniture. Find a solution that matches your interior design style.

Free-standing cabinetry can be moveable or built in, and storage doors allow you to hide contents, giving a clean outer appearance.

Partition Screens: Extremely diverse and accommodating for all budgets, screens are an easy way to create a barrier between spaces. Screens can be transparent or opaque and come in a variety of artistic styles.

Screens provide enough of a barrier to distinguish a different space and purpose, but they are flexible and easily moved should you wish to open things up more.

Windows and Glass: Framed glass solutions may be more expensive but they give you the best of both worlds: a solid barrier and an open, see-through space. Glass can reduce noise from one space to another while allowing you to still feel connected.

Divide Space for a Reason

If you are researching partitions, you likely want to divide an open space for a reason. Make sure you define the space and look that is different from the larger room.

Use a partition to create workspace that feels separate from the larger entertaining space it may be adjacent to. Use a contrasting color scheme or a different design theme to create something distinct.

Odom Design offers custom home and interior design services to the greater Myrtle Beach area. Have a space you are not happy with? Contact the Odom Design team and we will explore design options that are useful and beautiful.