5 genius ways to improve your open plan living area

Posted 10 July 2017

How can you make the most of a bright open living area this summer?

If you’re lucky enough to have an open plan living area in your home, why not get the most out of it? The trick to an effective open plan area is finding the perfect balance of separation and harmony. With that in mind, here are five simple yet powerful ways to boost the benefits you’re getting from your open plan space; keeping the flow whilst still adding the interest of separate sections.

Make the most of your materials

An open plan space is by nature one flowing environment, but you still want it to feel like you have different areas to explore and enjoy.

Use a range of materials, patterns and textures to create the sense of divided sections within a single space. Incorporate different colours and contrast vertical and horizontal lines to add depth and interest. 

Put a partition into practice

Adding a partition to your open plan living area not only helps divide the space, but can also add interest and artistic detail. Try to think outside the box when choosing a partition, as there are so many materials and styles to choose from. Whether shelves or a screen, dark leather or neon and modern, there is a partition to suit every open plan home.

Partitions are the perfect way to create the illusion of separate spaces while still keeping the pleasant airiness of open plan.

Serve up stylish separated seating

Separating your open plan living area into individual seating areas is a surprisingly simple yet effective way of doing more with your space. Experiment with different styles, textures and colour schemes for each seating area to really make them stand out on their own. While L-shaped sofas are traditionally used in the corner of square rooms, they can also prove to be a nice feature in the middle of a space to differentiate socialising spaces.

To avoid a sense of random clusters of furniture, make sure every set of seating is facing a focal point, whether it be a television, fireplace or just another piece of furniture. Not only does this make the design look neater, it also encourages conversation. Rugs are another great way of bringing furniture together as its own little nook.

Fall for fashionable flooring

Creating a successful open plan living area isn’t all about forming separate spaces, it’s also about bringing the whole thing together. And the best way to do that? By using a room’s most basic properties: the walls and floor.

Don’t be afraid of using the same floor design throughout the entire living area, even if your open plan space includes a kitchen. Interrupting the flow of a room with a strip of linoleum surrounding a kitchen area can feel dated. If you want something that looks good but is still practical, opt for wood throughout and use rugs to create a sense of cosiness.

Liven things up with lavish lighting

Just like flooring, you can use lighting to encourage a harmonious flow throughout your open plan living space. Lighting is the one aspect of décor which has the furthest reach, meaning the intensity and design of the light you choose in one section of your living area will change the feel of the entire space. Be sure to find a light design that suits every aspect of your open plan room so you can use it throughout.

If you do want to add some variation, try spicing things up with a mixture of floor lamps and wall fixtures. These have a more personal and cosy feel than ceiling lights. 

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