Divide and conquer without walls

Amy Buxton Amy Buxton
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Open plan living is so fashionable right now that it's easy to forget that we used to always have separate rooms, divided by permanent walls. But what happens if you have embraced the open trend and now want a little more privacy or segregation? How can you achieve what you want without permanently altering your home again? 

Room dividing can be accomplished in a myriad of ways, so come with us now as we take a look at some of them. We think you'll be suitably impressed with some of the techniques that we have identified and even be tempted to try them out in your home! 

Kitchen islands

One of the most common spaces to be given the open plan treatment is a kitchen and dining room, with the dividing wall being knocked out to make it one communal area. Despite opening the wider space up, however, you might still want to keep cooking and eating areas separate and there are ways of doing so without putting a wall back in.

We love this open plan kitchen/dining room from Ricardo Moreno that has been adeptly divided by installing a kitchen island. What a fantastically simple and effective room dividing technique!

Carpets

Room dividing can be as easy or taxing as you want it to be, but if you like it simple and implied rather than definitive, you can't go wrong with some demonstrably different carpet. It really can be as simple as having one colour in one area and another elsewhere, just to clearly highlight which sections are which.

We think this would be really effective in a child's bedroom, with one colour marking out a designated play area and another for the sleepy zone. As an added bonus, you could make the play area carpet a colour that will hide any stains or spills!

Wall colours

 Walls & flooring by CreativeArq
CreativeArq

Papel de Parede Quarto

CreativeArq

For something a little more subtle than varying hues of carpet, what about tailoring your wall colours as a room dividing technique? We can picture something really lovely, such as a palette of natural tones gradually changing as room functionality alters.

This bedroom is a great example of what we mean, with a natural mural breaking up the space behind the bed, where the en suite resides. Brown in the bedroom fades out into white and cream towards the back of the space and effortlessly splits the open plan zone into two.

Alternative flooring

 Walls & flooring by Revigrés
Revigrés

Coleção Cromática

Revigrés

If you quite liked the idea of using carpet as a room dividing technique, but you don't have any in your home, you can take the principles and apply them to any other sort of flooring. In fact, even if you have the same flooring throughout, you can simply look to paint it to highlight changes in room functionality.

We love these rainbow coloured stairs and the way they contrast against the petrol blue of the normal floor. It has inspired us a bit too; just imagine a home with wooden floorboards everywhere and a different paint finish in every room! We'll take pink for our bedroom please!

Sofas

modern Living room by Cássia Lignéa
Cássia Lignéa

Vista geral sobre a Sala do Tiago

Cássia Lignéa

In an open plan living space, there are many ways that you can get to grips with room dividing, from kitchen islands through to dining tables and plenty of other furniture, but our favourite option is using large modular sofas

Effortlessly splitting a room, large sofas offer aesthetic value as well as practicality and while they essentially mark out where the living room area is, they don't have an overbearing effect, especially if they are low-level. Of course, open plan living works for sociable people, so splitting a room with a sofa makes perfect sense; everyone can still talk, but defined areas are marked out.

Screens

 Household by Larforma
Larforma

FOGLIA

Larforma

For a quick and easy room dividing technique, why not think about something totally removable, like screens? Available in every conceivable style and colour, screens are a fast solution when you want a little privacy that can easily be removed later on.

Folding flat, they can also be stored effectively when not in use. What a wonderful way to split a space without investing in any building works!

For more wall-less room inspiration, take a look at this Ideabook: Reasons To Embrace Open Plan Living. If you've been thinking of going open plan for a while, this might convince you!

Is this the perfect compromise between open plan and enclosed? Which technique would you employ? We'd love to know...
Whitton Drive:  Terrace house by GK Architects Ltd

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