April 15th, 2015 | Home Design
The open floor plan isn’t a new concept, but it’s one we love building and conceptualizing in new and newly remodeled homes. It’s a floor plan that dates back to the earliest homes in the 17th century–the concept was simple; design a living space around the hearth & maximize the utility of your space.
Over time, advancements in technology, architectural design and the needs of a family changed how the home was laid out. The 50’s & 60’s brought mostly compartmentalized homes and separated rooms by their functionality. The 80’s shifted the layout of homes by installing half walls, faux windows, and a less claustrophobic feel to make the most of the space. Now the push for an open & spacious design is a hot commodity that we hope sticks around for years to come.
We’ve come a long way from our ancestors huddled around a fire in a one room home; so what does a modern open floor plan look like? The most common way to incorporate an open floor plan in your present day home is to combine the kitchen and surrounding living spaces into one large gathering area. It creates an open relationship between the main living areas that maximizes space in both small and large plans–and gives you more bang for your buck. You instantly increase the feel of the space without increasing square footage.
One of our favorite and most memorable open floor remodels features a bright & beautiful open space between the kitchen, living room, dining room and family room. Below you can see how each room seamlessly flows into the next, creating an inviting and friendly first floor.
From the natural light that flows from one room to the next, to the vaulted ceilings, to the breathtaking chandeliers that tie the whole room together, we love all that this space has to offer!
Open plans allow for an important visual connection that tends to be lost on more traditional & isolated floor plan layouts. You can be cooking in the kitchen while keeping a watchful eye on your kiddos as they work on their homework at the dining room table.
Transition to a fun Friday night as you are preparing the final touches on appetizers, while visiting with your guests as they lounge in the family room. Interaction is integrated in everyday life from the layout of your home.
Another bonus that emerges from building or remodeling a home with an open floor plan is the amount of money you can save by not having to buy doors or hardware, and the savings associated with decreased wall space. Decorating can become more cost effective as there is less wall space to fill/paint and more opportunity to decorate with purpose. We like the sound of that!
The transition between a kitchen and the surrounding space is crucial for the open floor plan to thrive. Whether the transition is done with furnishings, decor or paint, it’s important to define each area within the larger space to create a cohesive feel room to room.
There are a few key components to transitioning each room seamlessly; what are ways you have found that work?
Painting: Color can create a wonderful harmony between rooms; HGTV has some great tips on how to tackle this task and we love what they have to say! They help you pick a color scheme that is complimenting as you go from room to room.
Decor: A great way to define a space is with a well placed rug. Grouping furniture around an area rug helps keep structure in an open concept home. A well placed mirror or piece of art can break up endless walls, just as a chandelier can set boundaries between a kitchen and a dining room.
Furniture: A statement kitchen island is the perfect way to add functionality and boundaries to an open space. Mix & match countertops and material for added design points or add a fun colored accent chair to tie the whole look together.
Open floor plans are a great way to maximize space & create a cohesive, functional living space. We love the openness & how the living is enhanced in your living space; isn’t that what it’s all about?