Home » Design Ideas & Inspirations » 20 Best Ways To Create an Open Floor Plan

What is an Open Floor Plan?

Sprawling rooms flowing into one another, unencumbered by walls! Open floor plans are hard to hate. Since it arrived in New York in the 1990s, the open floor concept in home design has gathered much aplomb for being dynamic and liberating. Flats and homes that were up until then choppy clustered and cramped breathed a whiff of fresh air with the introduction of open floor plans.

 Coveted by most home buyers, an open floor plan increases the curb appeal of any house. A designer’s dream, some people, however, do not appreciate open concept homes. Privacy, as we realized during the pandemic, becomes a vexing issue when your home is one free-flowing area.

Segregating spaces and zoning activities can become a little chaotic. Designing such a vast space also becomes challenging for the average homeowner. But an open floor plan can flourish in the hands of a competent interior designer and architect.

Once the clients decide to hire an expert interior designer, an open floor plan has myriad benefits that can be enjoyed. To help you comprehend these perks better and make an informed choice, we have listed below some of the apparent plusses of an open floor plan.

Read also – 15 Best Free Floor Plan Creator

Benefits of Open Floor Plan

Better movement and flowing spaces

The lack of walls and doors between shared spaces lends the whole area a fluid form. Square footage comes at a premium, and this style makes the room look more prominent in small spaces with no scope for expansion. The lack of long corridors or passages means you have the freedom of movement.

The Social Connect

An open floor plan idea also breaks down communication blocks along with walls. Ideal for hosting parties, an open living area-kitchen-dining combo can accommodate a larger group easily. Similarly, the person cooking in the kitchen can interact with their family members in the other rooms and overcome the usual isolation.

Pooled natural light

Compact rooms bring added interior walls that may or may not hold windows. Bringing down such walls means every room benefits from sharing external windows.

These windows can also be widened, letting in bright, warm sunlight and clear, crisp air! Natural light and ventilation are thus plentiful in an open floor plan. This, in turn, purges the room of dark corners, allergens, and dust mites.

Increased real estate value

An open floor plan boosts the value of your home during appraisal. As per recent findings, for a house with a well-designed open layout, a buyer can be expected to pay 10-15% more than the market price of a sectional floor plan.


For the artistic homeowner, an open floor plan is an empty canvas where they can let their creativity run wild. No walls or partitions mean it’s comparatively easier to configure different layouts for the furniture and other accessories.

One can even move things around according to the season or occasion. For instance, a dining table in the winter can be huddled closer to the fireplace. Whereas, the same seating in summers, can enjoy some warm sun rays by being next to the window.

The layout can be multifunctional

An open floor plan can transform into several rooms depending on the need of the hour. This pandemic season witnessed work-from-home parents turning their dining room into the home office while keeping an eye on the kids lounging in the living room.

Read also – Floor Plan Symbols and Abbreviations

20 Best Open Floor Plan Design Ideas

It is easy to plan an open layout that’s both practical and stylish. You can start zoning out places such as the living space, dining area, family room, office, kitchen, bedroom, etc. Once you have the zoning ready, you can refer to some innovative ideas given below to level up your open plan.

1. Design around the user's daily needs

An open plan can be the wow factor or a focal point in the house, but it should also be functional. As a designer, you must take into account the client’s lifestyle and routines before setting out to design an open floor layout. You will then know how perfectly to delegate the spaces.

For instance, is your end goal to have a great room that’s expansive and stately? Or should the different areas wrap around the user cozily? Comprehend clearly what each member of the home needs and how they plan to use the open spaces before you start ideating.

Read also – 8 Elements To Read A Floor Plan

open floor plan ideas - design around the user daily needs

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2. Work with invisible walls.

It’s easy for open floor plans to look stark and scattered. To avoid this, zoning is crucial. The easiest way, ironically, is to imagine as if there were walls around. How would you put the living, dining, kitchen, and bedrooms as separate rooms?

Use this as a template to zone out rough placement for each room. Once the zones are marked right, use connectors. Connectors in interior design are elements that bind together different areas. They can be carpets, wall treatments, architectural features, flooring, lighting, or even art.

Read also – How To Draw A Floor Plan?

open floor plan ideas - work with invisible walls

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3. Kitchen connection

Kitchen Islands are the go-to in an open kitchen design. They double up as a serving or dining table during events and offer an unencumbered view. However, u shaped kitchen can provide the same advantages but with added storage and cabinetry space. Let the flooring flow from the dining into the kitchen for a seamless conversation between the two zones.

open floor plan ideas - soundproofing

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4. Bringing the outside inside

Open floor plans bridge the gap between the exterior and interior impeccably. Sizeable floor-to-ceiling glass doors and windows look right at home in an open layout. Most often, the living or dining space opens into a garden or backyard, thus inviting nature inside and making the rooms look boundless!

Having a home be part of the great outdoors can be very calming. You can utilize the said garden space on special occasions for an al-fresco dining experience easily! For a bold statement, let the same flooring pour onto the patio for a smooth transition.

Read also – 28 Best Outdoor Kitchen Ideas and Designs

open floor plan ideas - the nature connect

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5. Highlight structural features

Structural features like beams, columns and vaulted ceilings can be the superstars in open floor plans if incorporated into the design deftly. Use them to your advantage. For instance, the beam on top of a fireplace can frame the mantle like a crown. Similarly, vaulted ceilings are rare and exquisite. Be sure to draw them out with a few chandeliers for an extravagant overtone.

Read also – 19 Floor Plan Mistakes To Avoid

open floor plan ideas - highlight structural features

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6. Smart storage is critical

Storage remains a criterion in every interior design scheme. So don’t be afraid to make storage part of the open extension. With an open plan, one should refrain from cluttering up the space with bulky, vertical storage but rather smartly infuse it into the design. For example, you can decide to add wall panels that conceal a hidden storage closet in the living room.

Read also – 20 Best Floor Plan Apps To Create Your Floor Plans

open floor plan ideas - smart storage is critical

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7. Sunken floor

What if you wanted to demarcate an area without compromising the integrity of an open concept floor plan? Instead of big visual blockers, create a sunk to beautifully underscore the center of the living room. Depending on the depth of the drop, the recessed pit can be lined with comfortable cushions for distinctive floor seating with a low coffee table. 

Read also – 15 Best Sunken Living Room Design Ideas

open floor plan ideas - create a sunk

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8. Step it up

Conversely, you can also consider a split-level floor plan if you have a decent floor height to play with. Imagine adding a raised platform with a few steps leading to the kitchen. This diversity in levels also can be used to spell how communal the area is. For instance, the dining set on a raised level makes perfect sense as the center of attraction. However, a reading nook can sit snugly in a sink near the fireplace.

open floor plan ideas - step it up

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9. Highlight your walls

There are innumerable ways to deck up a wall, from classic French trimmings and wainscoting to contemporary slatted walls, framed photographs on gallery walls, or funky like a neon-lined bookcase near the entryway and creating a playful vibe. In an open-concept space, all the existing walls automatically become the hero. Thus, leaving them blank is not just an opportunity wasted but can also look incredibly dull.

Read also – 20 Best Wall Decor Ideas

open floor plan ideas - highlights your walls

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10. Natural and neutral

Other than large, sweeping windows, another way to visually connect the interior of an open plan with the exteriors is through a material palette. Opt for natural materials in neutral shades such as wall cladding, furniture, and even cabinets. This way, the exterior finishes can follow the same language, emphasizing the link. For instance, a tan or deep beige wall can harmonize with the sand outside.

Read also – 15 Modern Dining Room Ideas for Your Home

open floor plan ideas - dining needs

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11. Go for an L-shaped layout

If you are planning the architecture from scratch or have the opportunity to knock down and remodel some walls, consider making an L-shaped open-plan space. Easier than a standard square or rectangle shape to break up, this design will let you zone more efficiently.

The benefit of having an L-shaped open plan is that you can have your kitchen cabinets and utilities tucked away in the corner, and the whole space feels unfettered.

Read also – 7 Types of Kitchen Floor Plans with Dimensions

open floor plan ideas - go for an l shape layout

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12. Plant a barn door

Toying with the idea of a possible semi-permanent divider? You can have a channel connected to the ceiling on which the barn door can slide in and out. This suspended door can give you the desired privacy when required and melt away into the walls at other times. Throw a barn door into your design mix and create a unique rustic atmosphere. 

Read also – 11 Modern Rustic Interior Design Ideas

open floor plan ideas - plant a barn door

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13. Exult personality

It is easy to lose that personal touch when designing an ample open space. To avoid this, you can make an effort to add personal items in common areas to make the room feel closer to the heart.

If you are thinking about a picture wall, then a neutral wall can complement some black and white photos of the family on the wall. Thrown in a colorful armchair with a floor lamp next to the images, and you have a cozy family reading corner.  

Read also – 6 Steps To Design Your Dream Home

open floor plan ideas - exult personality

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14. Bring in natural light

Figure out the direction of natural light at different times of the day. Once you have this crucial information, you can plan the window placement efficiently. If done right, your room can be lit up with the changing colors of the day! This makes for a scintillating experience. One extra pro tip is installing large, sliding-folding glass doors to open the room completely.

Read also – 20 Ways To Add Color To Your Home Without Painting

open floor plan - bring natural light

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15. Mixed mediums

Talking of bold, define each zones with radically different elements. Each area should be highlighted with its very own unique characteristics and personality.

This contrasting scheme, for instance, can house a kitchen that exults moody, raw concrete walls, industrial fittings, and lighting, while the adjoining dining room hosts a rustic barn table and chairs with a dark wood floor. Beware that this style can go horribly wrong if not undertaken prudently by an expert designer. 

Read also – 20 Types of Interior Design Styles

open floor plan - mixed mediums

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16. Shelves as a division

You can opt to design a large structure that is a fusion of many small shelves to discern between two areas. Additionally, it can also give you the sought-after built-in storage solution.

open floor plan ideas - shelves as a division

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17. Include a corner sofa

We are spoilt for choice when it comes to sofa designs. Large sectionals or L-shaped sofas are the best way to neatly cordon off the lounge area in an open-space plan. Again available in various materials and finishes, these sofas can automatically become the room’s focal point. 

open floor plan ideas - include corner sofa

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18. Place an area rug

You can mark an area by adding a rug, which is obviously more economical than swapping out the flooring. As a rule of thumb, the carpet should not cross the line of the furniture placed on it. Always leave some flooring visible at the edges to give an illusion of more space.

Read also – Space Planning In Interior Design

open floor plan ideas - place an area rug

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19. Colorize zones

A mishmash of colors thrown together haphazardly spells disaster. You can connect all the spaces in the open floor plan by assigning them with a color scheme. You can either pick out the wall paint colors, décor, or furniture in, say, an autumnal color scheme. Or, you can go tonal, using the hues and shades of a single color.

open floor plan ideas - colorize zones

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20. Install a skylight

The crowning glory of any open room plan is its ability to imbibe a skylight in the ceiling. Installing a skylight can bask the center of the room in natural light, giving it that natural spotlight. It’s also a special joy to be able to star gaze from the comfort of your living room!

Read also – 16 Best Interior Lighting Tips

open floor plan ideas - implement a skylight

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As a designer, you are often full of ideas but fall short on words to describe them to your clients. When there are so many fantastic decorating ideas to consider while designing an open floor plan, it makes sense for you to call visual tools to aid.

This is where Foyr Neo’s powerful rendering software can help your clients envision the tailored open layout you have been crafting for them! You can build a 3D model with accurate measurements using the vast library at Foyr Neo.

You can add furniture, lighting, home décor, material, and finishes to your model and produce quality renders within minutes. Try the rendering engine by signing up for a 14-day free trial; we guarantee you will never look back.

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