Design Dilemma – How do I choose paint colors for an open floor plan?
This will come as no surprise to you, but one of the most desirable traits in a new home is an open concept living area. We all want to be able to be cooking in the kitchen but still be a part of the conversation and activities in the family room. When we entertain, we want one wide open space that allows everyone to mingle in the living area and the kitchen, or the heart of the home. We don’t want walls sectioning off rooms so that we are separated from our family and friends.
We love open floorplans at Eastwood Homes, and we have completely embraced this concept. But even though these desirable floorplans are so highly sought after by new homeowners, they also pose a challenge: How does one decorate and paint an open concept living area?
This week, we will focus our blog on how to paint this expansive space. The simple solution is to use only one paint color. However, many homeowners want to include interest ontheir walls, and using only one color compounds the challenge of creating a visually appealing space. Some beautiful and popular colors are just simply too much color for a wide open space and therefore they need to be utilized in smaller doses. Fortunately, there are several options for homeowners who want more than one color on their walls in an open concept space.
Most designers agree that you shouldn’t put more than one color on a continuous wall (at least without adding a trim detail, which we will discuss later.) It’s challenging to get a perfectly defined, straight line and without an added feature to distinguish the spaces, it may not make design sense. Instead, use your second paint color on an accent wall. For example, the wall spanning a living area and a kitchen should be one color, while the adjoining wall can be a complementary wall. Accent walls have become very popular, likely due to the popularity of open floorplans. Designer wallpaper is another exciting option for accent walls.
Use trim to separate “rooms”
If you really want to separate a space that spans a continuous wall, you can use a vertical strip of pilaster molding to differentiate the areas. Simply use a different color on each side, and make sure to stain or paint the molding to match the rest of the house.
Use trim to make accent spaces
Another option for adding visual interest to a wide open space is to install decorate molding on your walls. These can be done in large panels, sometimes in addition to wainscoting. Choose a color one or two shades lighter or darker to create a focal point while keeping with an overall color scheme.
Paint your ceiling
Many designers suggest that in order to tie in the design of a room, you should consider painting that fifth wall – theceiling! The ceiling is often forgotten when creating a color scheme for a room, but there are so many options here that take a room beyond a typical white ceiling. Even simply choosing a soft white to go with a warm color palette can make a room feel more like a designer space than the typical bright white color will. Consider coordinating your ceiling color with your draperies if you want to experiment with something other than white on your ceiling. Coffered and tray ceilings can offer a beautiful canvas for some more exciting color choices and can serve as a focal point of a room, giving a room visual interest while being a nice alternative to accent walls. Consider utilizing the previous suggestion for your ceiling as well. Use trim pieces to create a faux coffered ceiling, and use an accent color within this trimmed section of the ceiling.
Painting an open floorplan first floor can seem daunting at first, especially when you are planning your move, but it does not need to be a challenge. These options can help you turn your space into a home that would impress any designer! We’d love to hear how you tackled the painting of your open floorplan home. Just let us know below!