Take positive steps to minimise sound travelling through your openplan kitchen and living area.
Image: Brayer Design
When designing your openplan kitchen/dining/living space it's important to consider how you are going to zone the different areas for minimal noise pollution.
The Grand Designs magazine team spoke to Sean O’Donnell, design consultant at Burlanes Interiors on the technical aspects of an openplan kitchen/living area that can help minimise sound travel.
Design the food preparation and cooking area of your kitchen, so that it is as far as possible from where you are going to be relaxing and eating. Dedicating the opposite ends of your space for cooking and relaxing will ensure as little sound movement as possible.
Check the decibel ratings of any new appliances you want to buy, particularly the extractor fan as this is likely to generate the most noise. Look for products that have been awarded the Quiet Mark, as they will need to have passed stringent tests for sound.
Image: Mereway Kitchens
Muffle any sound that is produced by choosing integrated appliances that are housed in good-quality cabinets and behind well-fitting doors that have soft-close hinges, so that the doors never slam shut.
Adding soundproof plasterboard such as those from JCW Acoustic Supplies to the walls and ceiling is an unobtrusive and effective noise-dampening solution.
Image: Tile Mountain
Soft furnishings and flooring such as cork or luxury vinyl tiles (LVTs) in the seating area will absorb sound, which can be particularly useful in a big space with high ceilings and can limit it acting like an echo chamber.
Divide the space
Folding screens or pocket doors can also help with separating the different zones, without losing the feeling of openness. This is a great way to create a chill-out area or quiet corner for a home office.