Broken Plan Living

What Is Broken Plan Living? 6 Great Ideas To Achieve It

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Is broken plan living the new norm? And what is it? The ways we live have changed over the years and is ever changing with the times. Reflecting in design trends that come about. Recently open living for most, has been the goal for our homes. Creating a feeling of more space and letting in more natural light. All of which are great benefits for us to enjoy our homes more.

The pandemic has since altered some ways on how we living. And now there is more interest in broken plan living than ever before!

What Is Broken Plan Living?

Broken plan living is the slight adaptation from open concept living. It can give the open space flow that is so loved from the open concept. Such as more natural light and openness, with flexibility to close off sections of the space for privacy.

It seems as if it is a much needed option in current times. During the lockdown we had a lot of things going on all taking place in mainly one area. And many of us realized that some activities are not practical in one area at the same time.

Broken plan living focuses on the zoning areas in both directions. Using the floor space as well as room height to help define the space with furniture and screens. To get the best of the open feel and create a sense of privacy. This creates a connection and natural light to the rest of the space but with a bit separation. Giving a choice between sociability and privacy depending on the activity that’s taking place.

Why Use Broken Plan Living?

Creating a broken plan living space creates interest in the room. As well as helping define separate areas. Reducing noise in certain places is definitely one of the benefits in broken plan living. This could be useful for at home workspaces and study areas.

Depending on the size of your family and the dynamics you may find broken living a good way of achieving some balance between privacy and family socializing. There are a few ways to implement broken living in to your space. Some ideas require more time and money than others. Other ideas are a bit more simple. A well placed bookshelf, is quite easy to buy and use for a broken plan living space.

Broken plan living is a great way of dividing the main home areas. Like living rooms, kitchens and eating areas. These are typically the rooms where open concept was used to create more open social spaces. Where one room was used to house entertaining, cooking, socializing and working, now there is more of a call for separation.

More kitchen designs have been incorporating glass partitions to block out noise and odours. Little reading nooks and work spaces can be carved out using furniture elements and decor. Here are a mix of ideas using permanent and more temporary structures and furnitures that can be used to create a broken living space.

Broken Plan Living Ideas

1. Sliding Doors

One of the best ways to get a balance between open and closed space is to use sliding doors. Pocket doors completely disappear into the walls to give a complete open feel. These options give are great for flexibility between a social setting and privacy. Depending on the room space and wall area, wider the doors will create more of open space when opened up.

This sliding barn door comes from I Spy DIY. Yep, she made it herself! There are some ideas that cost a lot less that you think!

RELATED POST: 15 Sliding Door Designs You’ll Love

2. A Change In Levels

A change in floor levels is something is that is already within your home. It would be costly expense to design into the home but split levels is definitely a way to define areas within the home. Even a couple of steps between levels can help divide and separate the space.

If you have the extra height within your home a mezzanine level could be a great design option. It could be worth the investment long term. But if you’re looking to reduce the noise an open mezzanine area might be better with a closed off upper section to the structure.

If free vertical space is not an option in your home, it’s a lot easier to create a broken plan living area separate with free standing furniture and decor instead of permanent fixtures.

3. Bookshelves

Using a high or full height ceiling bookshelf is a great way for a broken plan living area. A bookshelf can be moved to different parts of the room depending on your needs. And it can be moved up against a wall if you decide that it’s better out of the way. It also provides extra storage to help keep things organized.

RELATED POST: 13 Great Bookshelf Room Divider Inspiration Ideas

4. Screens

Putting screens up in the space can be either a permanent or temporary solution. Ranging from a full ceiling height Crittal style wall or folding doors which allows plenty of light to flow through the space. Or buying a stylish folding screen could be a more suitable option for something less permanent.

5. A Low Wall

A half wall would be another permanent structure to the space. But it helps create a feeling of a more enclosed cozy area. A half of low wall helps define an area without sucking out any natural light that might be needed in the space.

An alternative to a solid low wall, is to use a low to mid height bookshelf. Which can be open bookshelf or closed with lots of different designs available. Modular stacking shelves can be arranged in various ways and heights to create a more enclosed space.

With a low wall you can choose to leave it open or screen off with glass or another material for extra to reduce the noise levels in the area.

6. Designed Wall

Get creative when choosing to put up a full wall to separate areas. Using different materials and creating designs that allow light to flow through the space makes a huge difference from putting up a solid wall.

A simple wooden slat wall creates a definite boundary but isn’t a heavy look for the space. It’s more of a cost friendly option. And can be put up and taken down a lot easier than a glass screen or doors.

Giving Living Options

Broken living is more about having the open to choose how and when certain spaces are used. Rather than everyone at the mercy of one decision or action taking place. Decide whether any of these broken plan living ideas could work for you and your family.


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