5 Ways to Divide a Room (Without Using Walls)

Creating two distinct living spaces from a single room, without closing either off, can be quite a conundrum. Fortunately, there are several solutions that are also easy to implement.
Here are five ways to divide rooms, helping you to define your space along the way.

1. Curtains

curtain room divider
Simple and easy to install, curtains (such as this one) will be able to create a defined space in a snap. They’re also very cheap and can be of temporary use.
You can open them, in which case your room will keep its perspective. When closed, it’s a change of scenery, and two intimate spaces are created.
In addition, curtain flexibility and lightness provide amazing height, and add an aerial look to your room(s). There are countless of variations to play with.

2. Storage

shelf room divider
Extremely useful, storage cabinets, shelves and libraries are smart solutions to separate a room.
You can put them in the middle of a large living/dining room, for example. They’ll define the space both aesthetically and playfully. Since they’re often without an actual bottom, or back, they can even let light through.
To counter a “blocking” effect, and change the perspective of your room without reducing its size, avoid using furniture that reaches both the ceiling and side walls.

3. Sliding Doors

sliding door room separator
Suspended, in a wall, staged or hidden, sliding doors offer many possibilities for structuring your space and divide a room.
In addition to visually defining an area, when they’re closed off, the doors are able to completely isolate everything from sound, sight and smell.
You can choose them opaque, colored, plain or transparent. Sliding doors like to play on materials, and are perfect to match whatever decor you prefer.

4. Screens

screen divider
More traditional, the long-forgotten room screen dividers are back. They are ideal for separating a room without closing it off completely. Screens can also become extremely small when folded.
They are very convenient for small apartments or rooms that need the occasional separation. You can find them in a multitude of style, from classic Asian inspirations to more contemporary ones. For example, here is an elegant room divider in “ivory fabric” with a metal frame.

5. Sliding Panels

sliding panel divider
To separate your rooms as you see fit, an interesting alternative could be sliding panels (like this Chicology “Provencal Maple”-style one).
Unlike sliding doors, panels offer a less “closed off” feeling, on top of being cheaper. They do follow a similar principle as sliding doors however, when it comes to installation.
They can either hang from the ceiling, or work within walls. The panels slide along a rail, to adjust the space to your liking.
Woven, window-like, custom, or mirroring mirrors, the removable panels will define and dress up your home to suit your own taste.


  1. Good ideas, but we need more details, such as what does one hang the curtains on? wall to wall ropes? We could use a photo of the ceiling rails that divider panels would slide along. These details will help us determine how feasible which of the plans is. Thanks.

    • For this level of detail I would suggest going to a Home Depot or other related store near you. You can talk with the professionals there and they will reccomend things.

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