Consider your lifestyle with or without children in creating the open floor plan. The design and curation of any space, especially if it is an open plan, requires the focus to be you and your lifestyle. Function, then beauty. If there are insufficient closets in the plan, add ample wardrobe racks at the entry and next to the sleeping areas. Lighting is important to set up the proper ambiance in the individual spaces. If you don’t have open views with lots of outdoor light you must add hanging fixtures and mount track lighting.
Storage Solutions to Organize an Open Floor Plan Effectively
To keep open floor plans organized and clutter free, utilize the cabinet space at your disposal creating defined spaces for different item categories so everything has a home. This makes it much easier to do quick tidying of the space on a daily and weekly basis. Also, consider taking advantage of vertical wall space by installing floating shelves. These can be styled in different ways by space and function. For example, using them in a kitchen for daily use dishware and glassware; in an office space for books and pictures; or in a closet room for a shoe & bag display wall. Consider maximizing space on the inside and even outside of doors with the Elfa System from The Container store. This wall mounted system maximizes spaces and maintains the integrity of an open floor plan. The easy to mount brackets and adjustable baskets are perfect for family bathrooms, playroom, pantry, linen closet and entry closet.
Some creative ways to corral unfinished projects and prep spaces so things aren’t left out in the event is no easy task. Ideally, all of your items have a designated space in your home, so that at the end of a gift-wrapping session or a children's school project when you get to a good stopping point you can quickly put it back in its place until you are ready to continue the next day. A large basket with handles may serve as a perfect accessory to grab for a swift and efficient clean up. We love woven baskets like THIS as an example.
Use of decorative baskets in cabinet and closet spaces helps to minimize visual clutter, as you're able to store things away but with the use of labels you can still identify what is in each basket. You can also employ certain acrylic organizers for nicer items like purses and jewelry that you want to put out on display to create a more elevated look that reflects a store or boutique, in your own closet!
Clean-Up Tricks that can Help Make Life Easier for People who have Open Floor Plans
When you have an open floor plan, any amount of clutter can make the whole space lose order. Making and sticking to a plan to keep the space free of items on countertops, piles on chairs, or letting excess items build up near the front door will help you maintain order. Daily, commit to a 10-minute tidy session. Set a timer on your phone and clean up or put away as much as you can in that time frame. Weekly or monthly, try to edit through things in each space and get rid of or reorganize items by their purpose. If you haven't used or reached for something in over 6 months, consider if it still has a place in your home. Don’t wait for the clutter to build to the point of no return. Making a clean-up routine a fun chore with immediate results will become a habit before you know it.
Taming Smells in an Open Concept Kitchen
People are usually surprised by this, but most of the smells come down to neglect for your appliances. Any place that harbors water will eventually breed mildew if not properly and frequently cleaned. Constantly clean things like your garbage disposal and the deeper areas inside of your dishwasher. And of course do not forget your washer dryer. Every compartment needs to be opened and wiped with proper cleaning tools and products. We love the affresh tablets for both of these machines once a week. Having a trash bin that is built into a cabinet versus a standalone bin can eliminate a bit of your garbage odor, but committing to a better solution for your food waste such as a Mill kitchen bin will completely eliminate the smells that typically come from trash. Additionally, remove garbage from your home on a daily basis. Simple cleaning tricks should be routine like washing floors, countertops, showers, tub and toilets. Have a large container of cleaning white vinegar, baking soda and dawn dish soap handy to remove smells within any home.