Is Broken-Plan Living the New Open-Plan Living?

Sophie Miura

Open-plan living was a game changer in interior design. It opened our minds to spacial arrangement and gave us endless possibilities to lay out our homes. Despite its big impact, some architects are calling for a trend revival: walls. In a recent article, Kelly Phillips Badal of Yahoo! Makers says 2016 will be the year of the wall renaissance, and that broken-plan living is set to make a comeback. Scroll down for the best ways to adopt broken-plan living at home and divide your space in style. 

Give a large room structure with strong furniture that frames the space. A couch or coffee table can be used in place of a divider to create two separate zones. Opt for white or neutral tones so it doesn't draw attention away from existing décor. 

Airy open doorways and minimalist fittings are the hallmarks of an open-plan home, but don't worry, it's an easy trend to tweak. Create defined segments between two rooms by accentuating doorways. We love this metal divider pictured in a Canadian home by Elizabeth Metcalfe Interiors. It subtly accentuates the doorway but still keeps the space open. 

Split-level interiors are a simple way to fragment a room without putting up walls. A few stairs signal a change of room without disrupting the flow of the house. Update the two spaces with different styling accents so it's clear each room has its own purpose. 

Open-plan bedrooms are stunning when they're spotless, but if you're not one to make your bed each day, broken-plan living might be for you. Experiment with translucent drapes to mark off your bedroom. Sheer fabric will ensure the space still gets light, and the divider will hide an unmade bed. 

It's fair to say that sometimes you just want your own space. We love this creative nursery bedroom design where mother and child have been given their own area using a bookcase. Experiment with furniture that's easy to move and change to see if broken-plan living is right for you. 

In her article for Yahoo! Makers, Badal says technology could be the cause for the broken-plan trend. "More people are demanding 'fragmented' spaces because of the increasing number of adults working from home and the rise of individual-use technology—tablets, laptops, and mobile devices—and the desire for space to use those devices privately," she says. 

Create a private home-office space with glass walls. The clear partitions will offer soundproofing while keeping the bright open-plan feel. 

Inspired to try broken-plan living at home? Shop our edit of the top 10 folding screens; then visit Yahoo! Makers for more ideas about how to try broken-plan living. 

Tell us: Would you try broken plan living?

Add a Comment

More Stories