Open Floor Plans Are Overrated
When my wife and I bought our first house it was a spacious new construction build on a tiny lot. When the agent was giving us the tour he said it had a “great room” floor plan—which meant that the living room, kitchen, and dining room were all one big open space. And I have to admit, we loved it. We had only lived in apartments up until this point, and the thought of having that much open space felt, well, great. There was room to stretch out, room to breathe. But the romance quickly fated.
Even though there was plenty of space, it sort of felt like we were living out of a single room. It turns out, “open concept” really means that any cooking makes the entire house look dirty. And that you shouldn’t even bother trying to hear the TV if the dishwasher is running.
Separate Rooms With Separate Functions
We recently sold that open concept and moved back to my home town; to an old neighborhood in a house that was built in 1923. The dutch colonial style house had a lot more character, but it also had quite a few more walls. At first it felt a little confined and we talked about which walls we might want to knock out to make things feel a bit more spacious down the road.
After living in the house for 6 months, all of that remodel talk has completely dissipated. We love how the house functions. My wife, who is a fantastic cook, can make a mess in the kitchen while making dinner and then we can enjoy that meal in a clean separate dining room. It’s not a nook, or an open eating area, no it’s a room. And it stays clean too, because we actually use it to dine in every night, and not much else. And it’s so refreshing to do the kitchen cleanup with your own soundtrack playing, and not worry that it’s competing with any conversations or TV shows in the living room.
I guess dutch colonial is a classic style for a reason.