Stylish Strategies for Open Floor House Plans

Stylish Strategies for Open Floor House Plans

A mainstay of modern home designs, open concept floor plans offer a spacious, informal solution for a variety of house types. Open floor plans combine the living room, dining room, and kitchen into one great room that allows everyone to interact, whether they're cooking, eating or entertaining. The lack of hallways and small, underused rooms frees up hundreds of square feet for larger living areas and flexible gathering spaces. Make the most of an open floor plan with these design ideas.

Incorporate a half wall. Columns and a half wall between the kitchen and great room help support the home structurally and create a definitive dividing line between the two rooms without wasting square footage in a hallway.

Add a kitchen island or bar. These easy kitchen additions create extra space for meal preparation, cooking or serving and assist with defining the boundaries of the kitchen. Build on the half wall idea by simply making it a little taller and adding some bar stools and a countertop.

Ensure easy outdoor access. The open areas of the home should flow seamlessly into outdoor living spaces for effortless entertaining. Delineate a clear path from the great room out to a patio or deck, preferably with a clear line of sight to underscore an ease of movement that makes the house seem bigger.

Use an informal interior design scheme. The emphasis on entertaining and interaction with an open floor plan pairs well with the casual decor. Create a laid-back, lived-in look that will let you relax and unwind when you come home to it every day. The use of one large gathering space means that parents and children will frequently relax in the same space rather than retreating to their own quarters or restrict one parent to a closed-off kitchen, so incorporate special touches that speak to the whole family.

Institute order with symmetry and matching furnishings. Keep your great room from looking too empty or disorganized by doubling up the larger furniture pieces, like sofas or matching chairs. Add a large dining table as a centerpiece. Using slightly mismatched pairings prevents the sets from looking too perfectly matched.

Get creative with corners. Because the open floor plan eliminates some of the separate rooms you would have had in a traditional house plan, you may find yourself carving out small areas of the great room to use for specific purposes. Corners are perfect for this, especially any that are next to windows. Carry the same color scheme through each distinct space to tie them together as a single room.

Choose a modern approach. Resist the temptation to load the great room down with deep colors and traditional materials. A lighter approach suits the open, airy sensibility of an open floor plan and instills a sense of sophistication. Try a white and gold color scheme with blonde wood and accent it with gold and crystal. A few pops of color, such as a pair of sofas in a bright hue, draws attention to the key features of the room and breaks up the expanse of light colors.

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