11 Types of Room Dividers
- Sliding Barn Doors
- Pocket Doors
- French Doors
- Accordion Doors
- Privacy Screens
- Bookshelf Divider
- Wooden Room Dividers
- Glass Room Dividers
- Modern Room Dividers
What Are Room Dividers?A room divider can be anything from a sliding door or curtain to a screen or bookshelf. It divides a space without being a permanent, solid wall. Room dividers are great solutions for larger spaces like lofts or studios, or in areas that need a flexible form of privacy. Sometimes, renters will install portable screens or curtains to limit some of the visual clutter that an open floor plan might create.
Other times, parents choose room dividers like sliding barn doors and French doors to section off play areas or define rooms that are for adults only. Room partitions provide the solution for all of these spaces by creating division without permanently dividing areas, like in traditional floor plans that utilize solid walls with framing.
11 Types of Room Dividers
1. Sliding Barn DoorsAn innovative option for interior room dividers is a sliding barn door. Rustica’s selection of sliding barn doors includes many options of space-saving panels that move along a track, wall, or ceiling mount. A sliding door is perfect for any interior space that requires a fixed door that acts as a wall divider but allows for movement between rooms. Installing a sliding barn door in open-concept spaces innovatively creates faux division within the floor plan, and hanging sliding barn doors over open storage areas creatively and effectively hides disorganization or clutter from the remainder of the house.
Rustica offers a variety of sliding barn door types. On their website, these doors come in four different systems:
Standard: Single door, single track. A hanger is placed at the top of each side of the door, attaching the panel to a singular mounted track. Pricing ranges from $298-$1278 for standard dimensions.
Biparting: Double door, singular track. The doors slide in front of the wall as they open, diverging to the left and right. Four hangers are needed in total for this system. Pricing ranges from $1100-$6615 for standard dimensions.
Bifolding: Double doors, singular track. Creased panels fold over one another as double doors diverge and slide to either side of the door frame. Pricing begins at $1047 and increases to $2400 for standard dimensions.
Bypassing: Double door, double track. Sliding barn doors each move along their own tracks, allowing them to bypass, moving left to right in front of and behind each other. Four hangers in total are needed to attach these doors to their track. Pricing begins at $1351 and increases to $6637 for standard dimensions.
In addition to meeting spatial needs, barn doors also provide aesthetic appeal. From door finish and dimension to barn door hardware, home renovators can customize each purchase to match their personal design style.
There are a few things to consider when purchasing sliding doors. Though these doors do block more light and sound than curtains or a screen, sliding doors are not air tight and therefore do not entirely prevent sounds or light from entering into a space.
2. Pocket DoorsPocket doors are similar to sliding barn doors in that they are the perfect wall dividers substitute for conserving space.
Rustica offers three types of pocket doors in a variety of price ranges. This chart provides a brief explanation of the three different types of folding room dividers offered through our website.
Pocket Door Type
Standard Pocket Door Size
(2’ W; 6’8” H; 1 ¾” L)
Single Pocket Doors: one panel, sliding left or right)
Double Converging Pocket Doors: two panels, each diverging and converging in opposite directions
Stacked/Bypassing Pocket Doors: two or more panels that pass over one another as they run on multiple track systems
Like a pocket, this type of door disappears when opened into a compartment in the door frame or wall. When closed, it stretches the length of the opening. There’s no need to consider the radius of a door swing or the hanging room needed for a lengthy track system. A pocket door’s track fits neatly into the dimensions of your wall or frame.
3. French DoorsFrench doors are stunning room partitions for spaces that can allow for a traditional door swing. These doors are also excellent for blocking sound without detracting from a space’s natural lighting. French doors will allow natural or artificial light to flow from one area to the next, creating a linear viewpoint into surrounding rooms and spaces.
French doors can easily be installed in virtually any size of wall or door opening. Often, homeowners choose to install not just one but two interior French doors for a more dramatic entryway into the kitchen, dining, living, or office spaces.
Interior French doors can be made of several different materials, including aluminum, fiberglass, and wood. All generally fall within the same price range with little price variation, costing anywhere from $900-$1100 per standard interior door.
French doors may be a bit more difficult to install and can require more upkeep due to the types of materials. Additionally, French doors may not offer complete privacy as there will always be a bit of glass paneling.
4. CurtainsCurtains are an elegant and surprisingly innovative choice for room division. Gorgeous lace or chiffon can be hung that stretches from floor to ceiling in doorways. Curtains can span the width of the room in a larger loft or studio apartment. Like French doors, these sheer curtains allow for a generous flow of light to flood from one room to the next. Or, solid fabric can be hung for a more private effect, limiting light and sight without removing the aesthetic of beautiful fabric room partitions.
Curtains are also extremely customizable for your space’s specific dimensional needs. A homeowner can easily move between privacy and accessibility by simply sliding the curtain to close off a space, or gathering the fabric into a wall hook in order to open the space. This could be perfect for a bedroom area in a studio apartment that needs to remain sectioned off when guests are over but reopened to create the feeling of a larger space but exposing more surface area. In essence, a curtain can act as a temporary wall.
As far as installation goes, there are many ways to hang a curtain to create the perfect room separator. Curtains can easily be hung using a cable or wire, a tension rod, or a ceiling-mount track/rod, meaning that these room dividers can be as permanent or temporary as you desire. Pricing varies depending on fabric choice and dimensions. In general, curtains made from low-end fabric or blends will be cheaper, costing around $5-$20 per panel. Curtains made of finer materials, such as silk or linen will be significantly more expensive, ranging from $20-$150.
One downside of curtains, however, is that they sometimes can look a little too much like a DIY project. For this reason, many renters and homeowners choose to install something more substantial, like a sliding door.
5. Accordion DoorsAccordion doors are perfect for partitioning off closet or storage areas or smaller spaces that can’t allow for a traditional door swing. An accordion door is basically a folding screen that is installed along a track so its foldable panels can collapse or stretch (like an accordion) towards a door frame or wall. These doors can be made from a variety of materials, including fiberglass, mirrors, mahogany, fir, and glass with an aluminum-clad frame. Since these doors are solid and generally opaque (aside from transparent glass), they also act as excellent sound blockers in addition to blocking light.
When installing accordion doors, home renovators have several options. Common choices including installing a single panel that stretches the entire length of the door, or installing two panels that converge and diverge to close and open. These panels can be crafted out of several materials, including fabric, plastic, wood, or PVC plastic. Most often, panels can be easily cut and trimmed DIY to easily alter your room partition at home.
Though convenient, accordion doors can be somewhat costly. Accordion doors can cost anywhere from $700 to $1,000 per linear square foot, not including the hardware system. Of course, prices can vary depending on the materials.
6. Privacy ScreensOne of the most portable room dividers available for homeowners is a privacy screen. These screens can be single or multi-paneled and are usually mounted on wheels for ease of movement and storage. Most frames are made with a durable material like wood or solid-steel, making this type of room divider perfect for long-term use. The screen itself can be made from a variety of materials: fabric, glass panes, decorative painted or printed panels, or solid wood. In a commercial space, office dividers help break up large areas and provide a space for conversations that need a little more privacy.
When in use, privacy screens can serve as an accent or centerpiece to your home’s decor. They’ll capture your guests' attention and bring a daily beautiful aesthetic for the homeowner, as well. Privacy screens can be used throughout a home or apartment’s layout but they especially work well in combination living space and dining room areas, sectioning off each area for intimacy or during more formal events. As portable as they are functional, privacy screens can quickly be stored against a wall or folded up in a corner of your room.
Privacy screens have a few downsides amongst their many benefits. Interior screens are not as stable as other room dividers and could potentially fall down while moving the unit. Some of the screen material can likewise be very delicate. You have to be careful with the fabric while it’s in transit.
7. MirrorsOften overlooked, mirrors can serve as an excellent room partition. Particularly useful in smaller spaces, mirrors have the ability to make a room appear larger as they reflect “more” surface area. Mirrors are also a trendy option for more industrial or contemporary loft spaces. Its glass will emphasize the beautiful brick and exposed beams so that those raw materials catch your eyes first upon entering into the space. Mirrors also reflect lighting, making dim or darker spaces seem bright and airy.
Mirrors can be purchased in sets of single, separate panels or as attached multi-panels that can be customized to fill your space. Mirrors can be cheap room dividers if purchased from larger retailers. Each single panel can cost as low as $75-$100. However, if you are looking for vintage mirrors or a set of attached panels, you’ll probably end up paying anywhere $500 upwards.
Keep in mind that glass is very fragile and needs to constantly be cleaned. Otherwise, you will always have unsightly fingerprints or dust. This is especially true if you treat your glass room divider as a portable partition and frequently handled.
8. Bookshelf DividersA bookshelf room divider is another flexible type of storage. Though not as portable as a wheeled privacy screen or mirror, a bookshelf can also be assembled and rearranged with little effort. Once in place, bookshelf dividers are semi-permanent dividers that are perfect for more fixed separation between spaces. They work can eloquently partition a living room from a dining area or an entry area or bedroom from the greater loft or studio apartment area. A major benefit of choosing bookshelf dividers is that the shelves provide additional storage for not only books but also decorative pieces, picture frames, or small storage baskets and bins.
Bookshelves, though functional, do have a few downsides. Sometimes, the extra books, bins, and decorations can add to the clutter of an open-space plan when the intent is to subtract from it. Additionally, bookshelves can be difficult to disassemble and move. Other options, like privacy screens or mirrors, might be better for the homeowner who is looking to alter their space on a regular basis.
9. Wooden Room Dividers
Wooden room dividers work incredibly well in a variety of settings, from a studio apartment or large bedroom to a classroom. This is one of several room divider styles that can easily accent any decor scheme you’ve created, from industrial to rustic or traditional.
Foldable sliding room dividers provide a distinct partition from one room to another while in use. They also allow for easy adjustment of the space, since sliding wooden room dividers can be collapsed and pushed out of the way when not in use.
If you’re looking for a more permanent solution for office room dividers, you should decide whether you want to combine room separation needs with your need for storage space. A solid wood bookcase, for example, can provide an elegant way to divide a room while providing extra office storage for important books, manuals, and other needed items.
Wood room dividers that can provide temporary space division while converting back to an open space include hinged panels, an accent piece, or a hanging room divider, such as a sliding barn door. You can find many options for permanent or temporary room dividers at Rustica.com, including our popular knotty alder doors.
10. Glass Room Dividers
Glass room dividers are used to create a separate space while maintaining the look of an open floor plan. A glass room divider also cuts down on the amount of noise that can travel from one side of the room to the other, much like soundproof room dividers.
A glass permanent room divider is ideal for areas of the office or home that are designated for a specific purpose, such as a reading area, playroom, or a meeting room. For these room divider ideas, permanency is beneficial since the floorplan and layout won’t be changing much. However, if you want the ability to section off a portion of a room and eventually open it back up, you might want to employ a sliding glass divider, instead.
Dividers of all types help you repurpose one large room into multiple areas for use. Numerous room divider ideas take advantage of glass dividers. If you want to allow natural light to pass from one end of the room to the other, permanent or temporary glass room dividers are ideal.
A glass sliding door provides more elegance than other options that are common in many office spaces, such as a folding screen or a temporary wall. Sliding glass doors are also ideal if you need a temporary room partition. Thanks to customization options, you can choose see-through glass, frosted glass, or opaque options for a room partition that provides class and privacy.
11. Modern Room Dividers
For those looking to create partitions in a modern room, there are many options to choose from, such as hanging room dividers, shoji panels, a portable partition, partition furniture, and other divider styles that create separate areas for your living space while allowing natural light throughout.
A modern space calls for modern room dividers. While soundproof room dividers might be ideal for offices or conference centers, a temporary wall might not fit a more modern aesthetic. Instead, consider a folding screen, pivot doors, or even a macrame hanging divider.
It’s important to figure out your goals before choosing and installing a living area wall divider. Are you going for modern room dividers that provide a visual break in the open floor plan space? Or are you looking for something along the lines of soundproof room dividers? Your answer to questions like these will help you narrow down your options, from a sliding barn door, a glass pivot door, or a light and airy macrame wall hanging.
Choosing the Right Room DividerWhen it comes to choosing the right room divider, there are many factors to consider. Here are a few questions to ask before making your decision.
- Functionality: Do you need a portable, semi-permanent, or permanent room divider? For portable partitions, consider a folding wall like a privacy screen. An excellent semi-permanent divider is a bookshelf or a curtain. Permanent room divider options include pocket doors, French doors, accordion doors, and sliding barn doors.
- Design: Are you looking for the modern features of sliding door hardware or do you prefer the decorative appeal of a privacy screen or mirror? Do you want your design to double as functional with the shelving units of a bookshelf? Ask yourself which design best fits your style.
- Spatial Limitations and Needs: What is viable for your floor plan? Do you have a wall where you can easily install a pocket door or is it best to install a ceiling mount that runs the width of a room? How far should your privacy screen stretch or how many panels of accordion doors should you purchase? Are you only looking to divide a space with curtains for aesthetics or do you need a more efficient way of blocking light and sound blockage? It’s important to choose a room divider that fits within your spatial limitations and requirements.
- Price: What is your budget? Curtains and bookshelves are definitely room divider ideas that won’t break the bank, but they may not provide the style that you desire for your space. Contemporary sliding doors and elegant privacy panels might meet more of your design expectations but they also come with a higher price tag. Choose a divider that meets your needs and fits your budget.
6 Benefits of Barn Door Room Dividers
- Unique and Stylish Look
- Great Addition to a Multipurpose Room
- Budget Friendly
- Space-saving and Versatile Alternative to a Door or Wall
- Convenient for Children, Pets, and Guests
- Very Easy to Install
A barn door room divider can be a fun project that anyone can accomplish with the right tools and effort. Your new barn door room divider project starts with finding the perfect barn door to use for your specific function. Take your measurements and start your search. Most of all, enjoy the process of applying a new functional and timeless addition to your home.
You can utilize a barn door room divider in a variety of instances, and it can be an affordable project that also provides straightforward installation. Room dividers have been viewed as temporary, flimsy, and even tacky. However, a contemporary room divider like a barn door looks much better than the options from the past and can also be a useful addition to the style and function of your home.
1. Unique and Stylish LookOne of the main reasons that sliding barn doors have become such a popular interior design elements is that they fit into smaller spaces, while also being functional.
Sliding barn doors can be customized to fit your style and are easy to install. They can be left open to provide an open living space, but then simply closed when you need to separate areas. Room dividers of yesteryear had to be stored or unattractively shunted to the side when not needed. A sliding barn door doesn’t pose these problems, and more and more homeowners are installing barn doors for the utility as well as cohesive interior design.
The interior design styles that you can use with your DIY barn door room divider are endless. Choosing a real barn door made of reclaimed wood will give your space a rustic look, but you can also find brand new interior barn doors that can provide a more modern style.
Interior sliding barn doors can be made in a variety of styles and colors and will complement the interior of your house. You can order a door to your style specifications, or you can paint it yourself. Some feature glass panels to allow light to flow. Some are made of solid wood, and others are crafted with metal or stainless steel. Your sliding barn door can be designed to match the interior décor and other elements in your space. There are many barn door ideas to choose from that can be unique to your home and your style.
2. Great Addition to a Multipurpose RoomMany houses contain rooms that serve multiple purposes, such as a living room and dining room combination. While you can’t always build a wall to create two rooms out of one, a sliding barn door living room divider can separate the two areas when you want. You can always open up your door to make it one living space again.
You might have a room that you use for games, homework, hanging out, watching TV, and other activities. When more than one person needs to use this room, a barn door room divider wall can separate the two activities.
The primary benefit of a barn door as a wall or room divider is to create more privacy. There are a variety of room divider ideas that you can consider for your own home.
Living room: A living room is often situated in an open space that is in clear view from other rooms. Interior sliding doors allow you to block off the other rooms when you want to keep sounds to a minimum. Living rooms often also do double duty as a guest bedroom. Sliding barn door dividers can section off the guest's sleeping area and be opened when the guest has left.
Master bedroom: You can utilize a custom barn door room divider to separate your master bedroom from the en suite bathroom, or from a reading nook you’ve set up in the corner.
Bathroom: You can use sliding room dividers to separate bathing and sink areas, allowing for those living in the home an extra measure of privacy if the bathroom has to be shared.
Kitchen: While some people enjoy having an open kitchen, you may want to install a rolling divider so that if you want to host a party, the kitchen or cooking area can be discreetly hidden from guests. A pantry is a small area that can benefit from the space-saving design of a barn door, too.
Dining room: Dining rooms in open spaces can be blocked off from other rooms so you can focus on eating meals without additional distractions. The room divider can then be opened to allow free movement around the living space.
Laundry room: This space is often very small or shares with other activities, such as a mudroom. A sliding barn door allows you to partition it off while using a minimum of space.
The ultimate multipurpose room is a studio apartment. Many open studios have entryways that make it easy to install a studio barn door room divider to create the appearance of a separate bedroom or dining room. Even a single small space can be turned into multiple rooms when needed.
3. Budget FriendlyAlthough a barn door is made of real wood, you can often find and fix up an old barn door or reclaimed barn wood. Besides the barn door, the only other thing you need is sliding barn door hardware. You can buy a sliding door hardware kit or create your own from a variety of parts if you are industrious.
Instead of spending a lot of money on multiple room partitions that won’t function as well as a sliding barn door, you can make your own DIY barn door room divider. Or, if you have a very specific design idea in mind, you can have your sliding barn door custom made, right down to the color, material, and decorative hardware.
Even those who don’t know how to install a barn door can follow straightforward instructions to have a design element that will last for years.
With a traditional door, you need to have a doorframe in which the door is hung and you must have a wall that will allow for a doorframe to be installed. With a sliding barn door, you won’t need to spend as much time or money on installation because it can be attached to wall studs or even the ceiling. This makes this DIY project much more affordable and easier to complete.
4. Space-Saving and Versatile Alternative to a Door or WallBuilding a wall costs a lot of money and may not provide the function you want at all times. A barn door divider allows you to create two spaces when needed and then slides stylishly out of the way when you need a larger living area.
Installing a barn door hanging room divider can also be a tremendous space-saving alternative to basic or even French doors. With any hinged door, you must ensure there is enough space for the door to swing open. That can further limit space, as well as furniture and decor options. Rolling door hardware can be fixed on the wall or even the ceiling, which takes up zero space, compared to a swinging door that is always hanging by the hinges and taking up living space.
5. Convenient for Children, Pets, and GuestsSome circumstances may necessitate closing off part of a room and a custom barn door room divider can help:
Children: Being able to close off the TV or a play area means sounds are dampened. This can be especially useful on Saturday mornings, or if your desk is located in the same room as the TV.
Pets: If you have a space in your home you don’t want your pet to enter, interior sliding barn doors look more stylish than a pet gate, and can be left open and out of the way when needed.
Guests: If you are having guests over and want to give them some measure of privacy while sleeping on the pullout couch, a rolling barn door is convenient. When hosting a party, you may want to close off the area where everyone has thrown their coats, or perhaps the kitchen from the dining space.
6. Very Easy to InstallBuilding a DIY room divider with barn doors or installing a premade sliding barn door room divider is straightforward and can be an exciting project. There are many levels of DIY. You can do everything from putting the door slab together, installing hardware and hanging it, to having the door delivered pre-hung and all you need to do is install the track and hang it. Think about the design ideas you want to implement into the final product based on the décor and style of your living space, and then consider how much time you have to spend. Follow these basic steps to find out how to make a barn door room divider:
- Measure your space: The most critical step is to measure the area where you are going to install your DIY barn door room divider. There’s nothing worse than not measuring correctly, only to find out that your six foot barn door room divider should have been eight feet instead.
- Find out what kind of sliding barn door hardware you need: Your sliding door hardware might be different depending on the current situation of your wall and ceiling. If you want to hide the hardware, you’ll need to select a different hardware kit than if you want the hangers and wheels to be visible.
- Make changes to the style of the barn door if needed: If you want to get creative, you can implement stylistic changes like sliding glass, metal, color, or even lighting. Even though the typical DIY barn door divider project utilizes a rustic solid wood style, you can implement glass room dividers into your barn door as well.
- Install the rolling door hardware: Based on the decisions you made about how you will hang your barn door divider, use your sliding door hardware kit to mount the hardware to the wall or ceiling. You will also need to install the hardware to the door itself if you didn’t choose to have it arrive pre-hung.
- Attach the sliding barn door room divider to the hardware: The final step is attaching your DIY barn door to the rolling door hardware and ensuring it rolls smoothly from one side to the other.
Sliding Doors as Room DividersDespite the many benefits to each type of room divider, some of the most popular choices are sliding room dividers. This is because sliding doors encompass a huge variety of design styles and functionalities. Since sliding doors have the ability (depending on material) to block both light and sound, renovators often choose to install these doors throughout a home or apartment.
Sliding doors make excellent room dividers between dining rooms and kitchens, living spaces, entryways, offices and bedrooms. They’re the perfect option for opening up a previously closed wall or creating “rooms within rooms” in lofts or studio areas. And with a huge selection of materials to choose from on Rustica’s website, sliding doors are as flexible in style as they are in functionality. You can customize dimensions and sliding door hardware, choosing different track systems as well as hardware finishes.
The style of door is also up to you. Turn older, traditional doors into sliding doors or purchase French doors, Japanese shoji screens, or solid wood barn doors to separate your space. Rustica offers a huge selection of modern and vintage options, ranging from beautiful frosted glass panels to wood panels finished with chalkboard paint.
Where to Buy Room Dividers?Thanks to our digital age, there are many places to purchase room dividers. However, not all room dividers—or manufacturers—are created equally. When it comes to creating an inviting aesthetic with quality products, it’s important to purchase items from a company that knows how to create pieces that last, while also providing customer service to help clients get the right piece for their home.
At Rustica, we’re proud to serve our customers by providing products with excellent craftsmanship and first-rate design support. Not only do we provide a wealth of information on our website to help you choose the best items for your home, but you can give us a call or shoot us an email and we’ll provide personalized support for your needs.
Unsure whether you should use a curtain to style your small space or a pocket door? We can help. Want to incorporate some decor into your divider style with shelving made of wood, a portable room divider, or a folding room divider? We can help you pick out a versatile divider that complements the elements of your decor, room aesthetic, and overall vibe. Whether you want a rustic-inspired divider, a traditional shelf unit, or a modern room divider, at Rustica we can provide guidance to help you find the right item.
We’re proud of the many Rustica reviews we’ve received from happy customers who have purchased hardware, sliding barn doors, and room dividers from us! What are they saying? Customers overwhelmingly love the quality of our products, the stellar customer service, the customization options we offer, the quality parts and hardware, and the ease of ordering. They also love our availability and willingness to help with the installation process from start to finish.
Shop Rustica.com for your room divider needs and create the perfect layout for your home that exudes class, sophistication, and style.
Find the Perfect Room DividerYou can create your own style and functionality with the many choices of room dividers. Each divider has the ability to meet your design needs and spatial limitations. Consider your options to determine which type of partition is best for your home or apartment. You’ll find a room divider that has the right functionality and visual style to suit your needs and expectations.
The best part about many room dividers is that not only can they be customized to order, but can also be altered in the future. Though some might be labeled as “permanent” they are not nearly as fixed as a solid wall. You have the freedom to undergo some trial and error as you find the optimal room divider for your space.