Extra Etxra! Read All About It! In what may soon deliver a fatal existential crisis to the ubiquitous Chip & Joanna Gaines design team that has become famous nationally for revamping older homes by (ultimately) knocking out a bunch of walls and turning the entire house into a shabby chic knick knack retail show room, the open concept craze may finally be receding and even reversing course in some areas. More and more contractors and designers are getting work orders to re-build walls and delineate spaces in homes as families discover that they actually do like the ability to be alone sometimes (even when they're not sleeping or showering). While there are aren't any studies (yet) on the psychology of open concept layouts in the home- it has been well recorded that in offices and professional workspaces, the open concept has decreased productivity, lowered morale, and even discouraged face to face interaction as people are forced to retreat into themselves.
Anyway, here are some reasons one might wish to steer clear of the 'open concept' layout that we have come to know and 'love':
Top Reasons to Reconsider the Open Concept
1. You Actual Want to Cohabitate Harmoniously in Your Space
Does the idea of consulting with your entire family on what activities are going to be done when, at all times, every single day appeal to you? Timmy's trumpet practice at one end of the room, dinner prep & dishes at another, watching the evening news in another. All in one big room, all the time, every day, forever. Doesn't that sound like a fun party?
2. You Own Things, Multiple Things (Sorry Marie Kondo)
It's amazing how your posessions tend to migrate from their hiding places, from neatly stacked piles and drawers, and end up on floors, table tops, couches etc. If you don't adore the idea of taking an inventory of EVERY single object you own and how they are likely 'out of place' 75% of the time every time you walk into the room- mayble a wall or two might help adjust down the scale of your clutter.
3. Your Kids Make Noise
I think this one speaks for itself.
4. You Don't Want to Clean Your Entire Home Every Single Day
Do you actually enjoy using your kitchen to cook elaborate (or not) meals every evening? Do your throw pillows, blankets, and remotes miraculously appear on the floor or balled up in the corner of the couch? Does the idea of being able to leave an area in a 'lived in' condition overnight after a glass of wine without feeling like you are lazy and live in a slum appeal to you? Maybe it's time for actual rooms with doors again.
5. You Rarely Entertain Large Crowds
Your ambitious plans for entertaining crowds of 12 good friends and family 6 times a month when you were purchasing your home are adorable. How did that work out for you? Are you still taking reservations for your weekly gala? Truth is a family home doesn't need to be simultaneiously where you live your boring daily life AND a vacuous venue space for entertaining acquaintences.
6. You're Not a Millenial (no offense if you are) and Don't Crave Constant Social Interaction
Wanting to be alone sometimes is okay! While it is true that younger generations crave constant connection and communication, that craving isn't always 100% healthy (hello social media) or beneficial. The ability to retreat into spaces that have distinct moods or functions is valuable and often taken for granted.
What do you think? Is 'open concept' living on its way out?