If you are an HGTV fan you will hear the phrase “open plan” tossed around consistently on two of my favorite shows, Property Brothers or Income Property. After designing all day watching HGTV is not exactly my idea of relaxing but the men on these shows are seriously talented and not so bad to look at LOL. Ok, back to the topic. When I graduated from design school the term open plan was mainly used in commercial interior design, I had a few clients in Florida that were experimenting with the concept in residential design. Today we are breaking down those walls and creating homes that truly fit our lifestyle. It took some re-programming to change our way of thinking; removing walls and creating a space that suits the needs of a modern family, a concept that most of my clients welcome but one that does not work for everyone.
I just love the idea that the open plan concept can be put into practice in any size home and with any style of design from modern to traditional. Some of the advantages of the open plan include; being able to interact with your family and friends while preparing a meal, keeping an eye on the kids while working on your computer or in the kitchen and a place to gather where everyone’s needs can be met.
Another term you may hear for rooms that combine multiple functions in a singular unified space is the “great room“. The overall idea is similar to the open plan concept but great rooms typically feature raised ceilings and may or may not have the kitchen in the space.
In this space above varied ceiling heights combine the idea of the great room with an open plan concept and traditional styling. Below, a rustic interpretation of the open plan concept. Over-sized beams help to identify the spaces and change in ceiling height, just fabulous.
A monochromatic palette works seamlessly in an open plan. Other features that I love in this space are the varied ceiling details between the kitchen and living room, fabulous lighting and consistent dark wood floors. Below, my final yet fabulous example of how breaking down the walls can truly create the living space of your dreams.