Oasis at Riverlights

Maximizing Space and Privacy in Your Open Plan Apartment

Maximizing Space and Privacy in Your Open Plan Apartment

Maximizing Space and Privacy in Your Open Plan Apartment


An open plan apartment in a vibrant city like Wilmington, NC boasts a multitude of benefits, from increased natural light to a spacious feel that can transform even the smallest floor plan into a roomy retreat. Yet, with great space comes the challenge of creating functional zones that offer both privacy and versatility. There's nothing quite as frustrating as a home that doesn't feel truly yours, where every space serves as a reminder of its multipurpose nature.

In this post, we'll explore inventive ways for you to segment your apartment, providing the division you crave without sacrificing the open, airy feel that makes this style of living so appealing. We'll paint a picture of a getaway that's distinctly personalized through subtle and creative architectural means.

From choosing the right furniture to incorporating smart storage solutions, we aim to inspire Wilmington, NC inhabitants living in open-plan spaces to make the most of their home, creating a harmonious blend of function and style.


Practical Furniture Placement

Your furniture is not just for sitting or sleeping—it's one of the most versatile tools for sectioning off areas in your apartment. Whether it's a room divider that doubles up as a bookcase or a smartly placed sofa, the key is to use each piece to its full potential.

Freestanding Shelves

Freestanding shelving units like the ever-popular Billy bookcase from a certain Swedish retailer are a godsend in an open plan. Not only do they provide much-needed storage, but they also act as a visual barrier that doesn't completely close off a space. Pro tip: choose the bookcase wisely by opting for ones with varying levels. This can compose a more dynamic partition that still allows light to filter through.

Dual-Purpose Furniture

Make every furniture item count by opting for pieces that serve more than one function. A bookshelf can be a room divider and a storage unit; a futon can act as a sofa by day and guest bed by night. This sophisticated layering of purposes maintains the open feel of the apartment while clearly delineating living and sleeping areas.

Rugs Define Spaces

Never underestimate the power of a rug to anchor a room. By using different rugs in your various zones, you can create distinct "rooms" that feel separate yet interconnected. This can be especially effective when your living and dining areas are essentially sharing the same space.

Visual Tricks for Division

Incorporate visual illusions to create the semblance of separate spaces. This involves selecting colors, textures, and design elements that demarcate each area with subtlety.

Statement Walls

Consider painting a wall or a portion of a wall in a color that complements your overall design aesthetic. This serves as a visual cue that one area ends and another begins. You can also use wallpaper or wall decals for a more texturally stimulating effect.

Hanging Curtains

Curtains don't just belong in the living room and bedroom. They can be used in open plan apartments to provide privacy or to conceal untidy areas. Opt for sheer or gauzy fabrics to maintain the flow of light and to avoid creating a heavy, closed-off look.

Strategic Lighting

Play with lighting to set the mood in each section of your apartment. Use pendant lights over the dining table to establish that space as separate, and floor lamps in the living area to carve out a cozy reading nook. A variety of light sources will give the illusion of definite spaces without the need for physical barriers.

Clever Storage Solutions

Storage serves a dual purpose in an open plan apartment—it keeps your space tidy and can be used to separate areas.

Under-Bed Storage

In the bedroom area, utilize under-bed storage for items that you don't need immediate access to. This is a great way to keep the visual clutter to a minimum and maintain a sense of openness in your apartment.

Storage Ottomans and Benches

In living areas, use benches with storage space or ottomans that double as bins for blankets and throw pillows. Not only do these provide additional seating, but they also help delineate the living space from other areas of the apartment.

Hanging Shelves and Hooks

Make use of vertical space with hanging shelves and hooks. These are perfect for keeping items like pots and pans in the kitchen or for hanging coats and bags in an entryway. By keeping items off the floor and walls, these solutions can indicate the transition from one space to the next.

Nurturing Green Divisions

Integrating greenery into your apartment is not just for aesthetics—it can be used creatively to define areas and enhance the atmosphere.

Room Dividers with Plants

Large potted plants can make for beautiful and natural room dividers. Palms, fiddle leaf figs, or rubber plants can provide a green barrier between living and dining areas, adding an element of serenity and filtering the air at the same time.

Vertical Gardens

Use vertical gardens to section off spaces like the home office or dressing area. These not only offer privacy but also bring the calming influence of nature into your home.

Floating Plants

Suspend plants from the ceiling or use high shelves to give the impression of a plant-filled canopy. Hanging plants create an interesting dynamic within any space and can be particularly effective in defining areas without creating a visual block.

Space Division Through Decor

Lastly, use décor to tell a story and frame the narrative of each section of your apartment.

Gallery Walls

Create a gallery wall with family photos or artwork in the living area. This not only personalizes the space but also establishes that part of the apartment as a distinct living area.

Themed Spaces

Choose a theme for each area of your open plan. For example, your dining area could be rustic with wooden accents and earth tones, while your living space could be modern with clean lines and a monochromatic color scheme.

Consistent Color Palette

Maintain a consistent color palette throughout your apartment. This doesn't mean everything has to be the same color, but using complementary shades ensures a cohesive look. It's a subtle way to blend or break up spaces with visual interest.


In conclusion, maximizing space and privacy in your open plan apartment is an exercise in creative problem-solving. It's about finding those delicate balances between division and unity, privacy and connectivity. By thoughtfully choosing your furniture, implementing visual cues, optimizing your storage, integrating nature, and crafting spaces with intention, you can transform your open plan into a multifaceted, personalized oasis.

For residents hunting for apartments in Wilmington, NC that offer the potential for such creative spatial evolution, look no further than Oasis at Riverlights. Contact us today to schedule a personal tour and start envisioning how you'll make the most of your new open space home. Open plans present the opportunity for endless configurations and would-be endless memories.

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