How to Create More Privacy In an Open Floor Plan

Additions and Remodels
Decoration and Design
Walls
By Contractors.com Team July 13, 2021

Open floor concepts, much like accessory dwelling units (ADU), have become more popular now than ever. They’re so common that a new home built in a contemporary or modernist style can hardly do without integrating an open floor layout. Even many owners of older homes opt to go through the trouble of converting their standard 1980s interior into a paragon of spacious modernity and simplicity. 

There are some compelling reasons to get an open floor layout, but there are also some downsides. Alas, what an open concept home gains in openness is lost when it comes to privacy. Fortunately, there are a few DIY open floor plan ideas that can help boost privacy and separation of church and state when it comes to home leisure and productivity.    

Ideas to Increase Privacy In an Open Floor Plan 

Most methods for maximizing privacy in an open concept floor plan are affordable and easy to do yourself. 

Bedhead Divider 

A bedhead may seem like a bulky and antiquated feature that doesn’t belong in something as current as an open floor plan. However, if used correctly a bedhead divider can actually enhance the feel of an open floor layout all while giving some added privacy. 

Bedhead Dividers Add Privacy to an Open Floor Layout

Bedhead Dividers Add Privacy to an Open Floor Layout

A bedhead offers a clean way of delineating divisions between different zones in a space all while adding a modicum of privacy. A great use for a bedhead could be to divide a sleep zone and a work zone, allowing both areas to have enough space without compromising the privacy of either.  

Plantlife 

If there’s one thing quarantines have taught us, it’s that our homes could do with a bit of sprucing up to increase livability. A great way to infuse life into an interior space is to add some plants to it. Plantlife adds vibrance and texture to a space, removes toxins from the air, and can also help to add privacy. 

Plantlife Infuses an Open Floor Layout With Vibrancy

Plantlife Infuses an Open Floor Layout With Vibrancy

Large and lush plants such as ferns, red begonias, hanging spider plants, and umbrella trees are especially well-suited to creating cozy little nooks in an open floor layout. Choose the right plants and privacy in your open concept plan will just come naturally.      

Room Dividers 

There are plenty of purpose-built room dividers out there to choose from. You can find them with wallpaper, upholstered with high-end fabrics, adorned with prints, textures, and various colors. The classic choice is of course the big wooden fold-out screens which typically come with East Asian or Middle Eastern styling.

Room Dividers Provide Subtle Borders For Open Floor Concept Zones

Room Dividers Provide Subtle Borders For Open Floor Concept Zones

Hollywood regency style dividers offer a more glamorous alternative, but the safest choice is a minimalist divider designed to complement your open floor layout. Whichever you choose, be sure to place the divider in such a way that it doesn’t cramp the space. The ideal spot for a divider is somewhere with a sparse amount of furniture.     

Pocket Doors 

For the doorways your open concept layout does have, pocket doors offer a great way of adding some privacy back into the space without taking away from the spaciousness of the layout. Pocket doors are designed to fit flush into a wall and are commonly used for closets and bathrooms. 

Pocket Doors Add Privacy Back Into an Open Floor Layout

Pocket Doors Add Privacy Back Into an Open Floor Layout

However, there’s no reason to limit their use to just these areas as pocket doors can be used anywhere there’s a wall big enough for them to slot into. Unlike a traditional door, pocket doors stay out of the way when open while still adding privacy to intimate spaces such as the bedroom or bathroom. 

Artwork That Doubles as a Divider 

Rather than have real walls disrupt the flow of your open-concept space, a more seamless and creative solution is to put in some “floating walls”. These can be made in several ways, but generally, they’re made up of suspended pieces of wood paneling with artwork attached to them.

Artwork Seamlessly Divides an Open Concept Space

Artwork Seamlessly Divides an Open Concept Space

This makes for a colorful and interesting way of dividing zones in an open floor layout and also adds a level of privacy. The enterprising handyperson will love this idea because it is easy and quite affordable to do yourself. The obvious benefit of these floating walls is that they can add quite a bit of character to a sterile modernist design.   

Shelving

One issue with open concept layouts is that they tend to be low on storage space. This makes it hard to find a place for everything and can also increase clutter. One way to solve this problem is to install some bookcases. You don’t have to only use bookcases for your home library. Bookshelves can be used for storing many items including photos, knick-knacks, decor, and toys. Plus, these shelves provide another way of dividing the space and adding intimacy to each zone.

Maximize Storage Space in Your Open Floor Layout With Shelving

Maximize Storage Space in Your Open Floor Layout With Shelving

Zen Corner 

In this topsy-turvy world, we all need a place to get away from time to time. It pays to press the pause button, destress, and unwind. This is especially the case if you live in an open concept home where a little extra privacy wouldn’t hurt. Social interaction is always a good thing to have, but occasional seclusion is also healthy. 

Take a Break From the World in Your Own Zen Corner

Take a Break From the World in Your Own Zen Corner

A meditation nook is an easy thing to create with some creature comforts and small, tasteful decor elements. All you need are some throw pillows, a Tajik bistar (mat), some neat handmade pieces (pottery is a good place to start). For added atmosphere, you can also go the extra mile with some incense burners or a Feng Shui miniature water feature.    

Tips and Tricks to Make An Open Layout Cosy

There are also plenty of ways to add texture and coziness to an open floor concept — especially useful if you feel that your current setup is a bit too cold and empty.

Conversation Zones

The best way to add warmth to an open concept space is to enhance it’s natural qualities. Open floor layouts are meant to make social interactions easier, so be sure that your furniture reflects this by incorporating a variety of conversation zones. Conversation of the deep, satisfying kind requires people to sit comfortably and communicate easily without needing to shout or constantly repeat themselves. 

Add Warmth to the Space With Conversation Zones

Add Warmth to the Space With Conversation Zones

Focal Points 

The eye can get lost and overwhelmed if an open space does not have any distinctive features for it to focus on. This isn’t a recipe for a good interior design, so you’ll need to resolve this problem to revamp your open floor plan. This issue can be alleviated by adding visually interesting details such as vibrant artworks, pretty light fixtures, and bursts of vibrant color in furniture and fixtures. This also enhances the coziness of the space which is important for making it feel more private. 

This Stunning Layout Embodies The Luxury of Open Floor Designs

This Stunning Layout Embodies The Luxury of Open Floor Designs

Leave No Wall Blank 

If there’s one way to prevent emptiness, it’s to make sure no blank space is left unfilled. A bunch of blank walls in an open concept home translates to a lot of empty, cold, uninviting space that’s devoid of character. You’re probably not going for an alienation effect with your interior design, so emptiness is something to avoid. 

Bathe Your Walls in Colorful Artwork

Bathe Your Walls in Colorful Artwork

Fortunately, this is easy to do as all it requires is filling each space with something that’s aesthetic and adds a layer of personality. Paintings are always a good choice as are artistic photos, but you can also add intrigue to a wall design by converting a standard drywall surface into something more interesting such as classy natural stone or industrial brickwork. Some pretty Moorish tilework wouldn’t be amiss either if your home needs a dash of color.   

Light It Up

This might seem counterintuitive at first, but adding some extra lighting can help increase the privacy of an open concept room. Brightening things up helps add clearer zones to the open concept room which in turn makes it easier to install dividers for privacy. For an added effect, lights of different colors and brightnesses can be used to subtly indicate spaces that are meant to be open social ones and those which are supposed to be more intimate. 

Add Clear Open Floor Layout Zones With Better Lighting

Add Clear Open Floor Layout Zones With Better Lighting

Written by
Contractors.com Team

Written by Contractors.com Team