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  • Velvet Matheson

5 Things to Consider BEFORE Going to an Open Floor Plan.

Updated: Nov 24, 2023

Are you having a love – hate relationship with your open floor plan home?


Hi I’m Velvet of Little Red Door an Interior Design Studio where I believe no one should have to live with bad design.

Are you having a love hate relationship with your open floor plan in your home? Has the appeal of being connected to the rest of the rooms worn off when you realized how noisy it can be? How distracting the lighting can be when all the lights are turned on for cooking and others are doing homework or trying to host a party that the family space no longer serene and relaxing while someone is in the kitchen.

I think the open floor plan has been a bit romanticized and that real life depending on the size of the home and who’s doing the cooking may not be an ideal scenario. That our luxurious social gatherings in our finest garb show us picking appetizers off of our expansive island, where servers are refreshing my glass of wine and that the piano playing in the back ground is the real thing and not Siri playing the greatest piano hits of all times.

Perhaps the thought of these open plans work better for larger homes where there are more rooms and a second kitchen where the meals are being prepared but in an average home these spaces can be noisy and make it more difficult to define them for different uses and furniture placement.

I know in our 1200sqft home on two levels, the open floor plan makes if feel more spacious but truthfully when someone is in the kitchen and someone is trying to watch read, watch TV or do homework it is nearly impossible.

Our “dining room” table has becomes a drop zone. Perhaps it is more important for those wanting more square footage or perhaps we really need to look at how, when and who will be using the space.

In larger homes you can create more zones, transition with more soft furnishings to help with the noise. Lighting can be more defined as well and the over flow to the other rooms and be softened.

Now I’m not suggesting to make all the little houses back into the rooms of the 60’s but it is something we need to talk about, something that needs to be considered and perhaps a tolerance check needs to be made before making a plan to remove walls and open spaces up. I also suggest that a full plan for furniture needs to be considered and that you don’t mind looking at the back of a sofa or a table. If you have a TV in the space who can see or watch it when it’s on and is this something you want your guests to see when they are coming over to socialize.

Where is the focal point, how do these “spaces” work together in your design style and do you even know what that means?

How to keep our family from entering working areas of a kitchen while meals are being prepared? How does light transfer between rooms? If you open up a space how much brighter and lighter will it be? Does this effect how the other room is used? TV watching and glare where the TV currently sits. What types of finishes that will have reflection?

So for me, an open space means compromise.

So here are my 5 things to consider…

1. Look at your overall space, will it work or flow better and feel bigger? Will there be more natural light through the space?

2. Will you be able to place furniture and appliances to create defined “rooms” without walls?

3. Furniture needs to be bought for that particular space as your sectional may no longer work or that antique piece your grandmother gave you may no longer work with your open plan design style.

4. Removing walls and opening up plans means less wall space for adding the personal touches and memories like art work or photographs. If this is important to YOU it should be considered in your design.

5. Budget. The entire space needs consideration an all of these need to be worked into your budget whether this is a renovation, a new home or you’re moving into a new-to-you home.

Not sure what your design style is, or need more help? Check out our mini course Kitchen Design ~ Get Started here

Velvet of Little Red Door an Interior Design Studio where I believe no one should have to live with bad design! For more great reads sign up.

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