How to Design a Small Space Open Floor Plan

Usually, when you see a photo of an open floor plan, it’s this spacious, modern design. The kitchen sits way off in the distance, large windows let in plenty of natural sunlight and there may even be space for multiple sitting areas. But just because you might have a smaller space, that doesn’t mean that an open floor plan is out of your reach. With some smart adjustments, you can create a small space open floor plan.

This might be one of the most involved home projects you could undertake. If you don’t live where you already have a small space open floor plan, you may have to work with a remodeler, move or even design your own dream home. However, if you already live with a small open floor plan, some of the design ideas below can help you make the most of the space you already have. As such, the cost of this project could range in the hundreds of thousands of dollars for a new build or it could be a free endeavor of just moving around furniture.

Small Space Open Floor Plan Small Sofa

A single sofa or loveseat can work wonders in small space open apartments. Image: Jodie Johnson/Shutterstock

Go Minimalist with the Furniture

Whether you already have a small space open floor plan or you’re in the process of designing/finding one, a major feature in the space will be the furniture. If you are working with a smaller space, you’re not going to have as much room for multiple sitting areas. And you’re going to want to keep the space looking as open as possible.

The easiest way to work with furniture in a small space open floor plan is actually to go big. This is counterintuitive, but a single larger furniture piece along the wall keeps the space more open. Otherwise, you’re cluttering up the space with many smaller items like individual chairs. Depending on the layout of the room, you could use a long sofa, a sectional or even add a loveseat.

Small Space Open Floor Plan Wall Art

Boldly colored wall art can make a stunning focal point in an open space. Image:

Create a Focal Point in your Small Space Open Floor Plan

If you’re working with a small space open floor plan, you might want to create a focal point to add visual interest to the room. One focal point item will add plenty of style to your space without cluttering up the smaller area the way designs with more working parts might. Examples of small space focal points can include a:

  • Small accent wall
  • Fireplace, either real or electric (smaller electric fireplaces fit well into small spaces)
  • Single piece of larger, bold furniture, like a brightly colored sofa
  • Television over a mantel or a display cabinet
  • Piece of large wall art

These ideas also create their own sense of organization, as you’ll often organize other items like furniture around the focal point.

Small Space Open Floor Plan Loft Design

Open railings can visually expand small floor plans. Image: Waclaw_EPI/Shutterstock

Think Open Balconies

If you’re in the process of finding a new place to live or designing that dream home, a key feature to keep in mind is an open loft design. That way, even if the space is on the smaller side, you have a whole second story that is visually open.

An open loft design leads to the illusion that the space is far bigger than it is. And it helps add to the small space open floor plan feeling by actually opening up the space. This is a design that is both illusion and literally more open.

Small Space Open Floor Plan Light Colors

Neutral and bright shades can stop a small space open floor plan from feeling closed in. Image: Dariusz Jarzabek/Shutterstock

Keep it Bright

You’ll also want to keep a close eye on the color scheme of the room. A common feature of open floor plans is that they tend to stay on the bright and neutral side of the design spectrum. A small space open floor plan is no exception. In fact, in smaller spaces, it’s even more important to keep the space light and neutral. Lighter colors help keep spaces feeling free and open.

Also, keeping the area well-lit will help it feel more open since darker spaces usually automatically feel closed off. You might consider elements like large windows or skylights. These will keep the natural light flowing into the space. If these are not an option, other lighting features like recessed lighting, pendant lighting and even casual chandelier designs can keep the space well-lit.

And remember, everything in this style is about keeping the space looking as open as possible. Your small space open floor plan goal is to make the space feel more expansive.

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