Half walls (commonly referred to as knee walls for obvious reasons, or pony walls due to their origin) aren’t new to home design or construction. That being said, they also aren’t outdated or out of style. Half walls have seen a major boost in popularity over the last few years — and for good reason.

A mindfully designed half wall can act as a partition for the large open concept areas of your home, as well as define feature areas within your home, all without giving up the desirable and sought-after qualities offered by an open concept layout like an airy feel, improved connectivity, and increased light flow. Some half wall designs have never gone out of style, some designs have kept up with the times and there are some designs that are worth a comeback.

Privacy Half Walls

Some of the best examples of how half walls can functionally and aesthetically improve a space are found in bathrooms. Bathroom space is fairly complex and houses quite a few contrasting areas within itself, but by using various types of glass half walls around areas like showers or solid half walls around things like toilets, these contrasting features can become complementary in a shared space.

Half Walls for Full Intrigue

You may have a nice big space that you don’t necessarily want to section off but would like to define and add interest to. Separating one wall vertically into two halves with paint or using decorative wall molding panels will add interest to any room, and can be an extremely fun and easy feature to work with when decorating.

Cozy Half Walls

In an open and airy area like a spacious living room, a half wall (especially when built into a corner or designed in an L shape) can create the perfect cozy space to nestle your couch or seating area into. In the bedroom, a cozy half wall may almost resemble a grand headboard or half cubicle to cap the top of the bed and create a sleeping space that feels more safe and comfortable — and looks more comfortable and aesthetically pleasing as well.

kitchen, interior design, real estate

Highly Functional Half Walls

Half walls are a perfect spot to integrate sought-after storage space, whether it be decoratively done, secret and subdued, or even both with accessible and aesthetically pleasing storage on one side and a clean and complementary finished surface on the other. With a half wall that’s providing storage, necessary room separation, defining an area within your home, and perhaps even improving it by creating a more cozy and personalized space, you may start questioning what your normal walls have done for you lately.

Half Walls with Personality

There are a lot of unique features that can be incorporated into a pony wall. Accentuating your design with antique hardware to express and define your style, using unique lighting to encourage cohesiveness between the styles found in your home and various other finishing features can have an extremely positive impact on the design and creation of your pony wall. It may be a half wall, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t go all out.

Half Walls for Maximum Flow

The half wall is a perfect solution to accommodate extra appliances like ovens and dishwashers that often create their own versions of half corner walls when you don’t have enough space under or alongside your main counter. A pony wall set behind these appliances that match your existing finishes will resolve this by tying everything together and making it look as though the appliances were meant to be there.

apartment, window, glass wall

Partition Half Walls

Though some of the half wall designs noted here are limited to certain areas of your home, the classic partition style pony wall refuses to be limited to any space or form. Highly customizable and highly adaptable, a half wall used in this capacity can work well in almost any space — especially when you’ve taken the time to create a design that incorporates what you need in that space both functionally and aesthetically and that flows with the rest of your home’s spaces and decor.

Cubicle Half Walls

If you’re working with a large room and open concept, consider defining a feature space within it by framing it in its own cubicle using pony walls to keep it open and part of the room. Depending on just how big and airy your space is, this could be as simple as a sitting area within your living room or as big as giving an entire room a half wall cubicle in amongst an entirely open floor plan.

Embracing Half Walls Wholeheartedly

Intended for (you guessed it) ponies and horses in stables, the pony wall emerged from the stables and took over as a feature design choice in homes, businesses, and commercial buildings far and wide to become the modernized and versatile half wall that we know it as today.

Half walls can help you define certain areas within your home and even create them. Both visual and functional boundaries exist in the form of half walls, and they achieve this without sacrificing natural light flow, closing areas off from each other, or closing your house members and guests off from each other. This means that whether you’re trying to keep a party going, or trying to keep an eye on children or pets, you’ll be thankful for your half walls and their ability to keep you connected — along with the mindful design choices that you’ve made for them.

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