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For all the benefits that open plan living spaces have, residents still find one issue to be particularly challenging: dividing space between different areas of the home. This leaves many to search for the best way to create separation without compromising the design. If you’re searching for creative ways to define and divide your open plan residence, keep reading for nine ideas.

1. Wooden Dividers with Shelving

If you have an open plan space, in addition to finding ways to section off your home, another one of your challenges is to create aesthetically pleasing space for storage. One creative solution solves this problem in the form of a wooden divider with built-in shelving. The divider makes it easy for you to corner off any particular room in your home while ensuring that the divider doubles as open shelves.

With these dividers, the shelving is designed so that you can adjust the visibility between the spaces. For example, you can purchase a divider that goes from the floor to the ceiling while opening up the shelving wherever you see fit. Depending on how you set up these dividers, the open shelving will allow for more privacy. One way to do this is to populate your shelves with plants. This will add style to your space while immediately creating more privacy for you.

2. Create an Island

Islands are a favorite among designers of open plan homes. These island benches or tables tend to divide the living room from the kitchen quite effectively. If you want to have your own take on this island idea, consider using a dining table. While it won’t be as solidly constructed as a traditional island, you can pair your dining table with a drop-down extension.

This extension can be used to further emphasize the division between rooms in your home. As the dining table would otherwise have open space around the legs, the extension ensures that the table creates a solid line of separation between rooms.

3. Choose a Campground Layout in the Bathroom

Using a campground layout in the bathroom makes it as accessible as possible. Dividing showers from the rest of the room makes it easier for multiple people to have access to the bathroom. Ideally, this division will involve a solid wall to guarantee maximum privacy. In the event that you can’t construct a wall, a solid shower curtain can essentially provide the same privacy benefits.

4. Use Shutters as Dividers

While many people only consider shutters to be window treatments, they make for excellent room dividers as well. For houses with an open floor plan, Charlie Jones from Shuttercraft recommends using shutters as a stylish option for room dividers. Though these shutters can be used anywhere in the house, many people opt to use them to divide the kitchen from the rest of the home.

These shutters as room dividers are essentially shutter doors that allow for the maximum amount of versatility with your open floor plan. Depending on your needs, you can keep the shutter doors closed when you want privacy and open when you’d prefer a continuous line of sight throughout the rest of the home.

5. Install Floating Paintings

If you’re an art lover, this idea is perfect for you. Using paintings as dividers instantly gives more dimension to your space as the paintings act as both decor and a tool of separation. For the artwork itself, invest in a local artist and buy their art or go the DIY route and make the work yourself.

When installing this floating divider, you’ll need two large canvases that you can hang back to back. Using fishing line, you’ll be able to hang these pieces from the ceiling and will instantly have your very own artistic dividers.

6. Use Curtains for Separation

If you want to have a bit of a softer touch as you separate the various space in your home, curtains may be the better choice for you. With floor to ceiling curtains, you can section off areas like the bedroom, living room, and similar spaces. Depending on the level of privacy you’re hoping for, you may want to invest in light blocking curtains. This will ensure you get a good night’s sleep and that no one else will be able to see you on the other side.

7. Create Mirrored Walls

Who says mirrors are only for the bathroom and closet doors? With a mirrored wall you’ll instantly make any space feel more open as you section off various rooms. Whether you build a freestanding mirror or you install sliding mirror doors, you’ll love how much more space you seem to have after adding the mirrors.

8. Build An Extended Headboard

If there’s no division between your bedroom and the rest of your space, consider creating one by building a headboard that doubles as a narrow wall. This extension will instantly make your room feel more like a place of rest while allowing for more privacy between the bathroom, kitchen, and every other room in your home or apartment.

9. Try a Hanging Plant Wall

Though this wall offers more in the way of aesthetics than privacy, this idea is a clever way to section off the more shared spaces in your home. Call it a living wall, a vertical garden, or a hanging plant wall—this idea will bring a new sense of life to your home while giving you the sense of division that you crave. You can create this wall yourself with your favorite plants or dried flowers. If you do use real plants, be sure to have a built-in plan to keep them watered and healthy.

Open floor plans offer residents the chance to get as creative as possible when designing their space. As you work on turning your space into a home, keep these nine separation tips and tricks in mind. While all of them may not work for your home or apartment, let these ideas inspire you to find the ones that will.