The Best Room Dividers of 2022

Whether for open-concept home design or studio-apartment living, the best room dividers partition a space to maximize its use.

By Carol Benton | Updated Apr 26, 2022 1:27 PM

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Best Room Dividers Options

Photo: amazon.com

Room dividers combine form with function while serving numerous purposes. For example, a portion of a guest room might double as a crafting space, and a room divider screen can help conceal the chaos. Alternatively, the best room divider for Zoom calls provides a solid-color backdrop for online meetings.

On the other hand, room dividers also can serve decorative purposes when they complement the decor and blend with existing furniture. Keep reading to discover the best room dividers for multiple uses, combining visually attractive features with functionality.

  1. BEST OVERALL: Rose Home Fashion 5.6 Ft Partition Wood Room Divider
  2. BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: Bayou Breeze Cecilia 68.5” H Room Divider
  3. BEST MODERN: Minted for West Elm Modern Screen
  4. BEST RUSTIC: Olivia & May Farmhouse Wood Room Divider Screen
  5. BEST BOHO: Livalaya Large Macrame Curtain
  6. BEST CUT-OUT: Urban Outfitters Amber Carved Wood Room Divider
  7. BEST WITH SHELVING: IKEA Kallax Shelf Unit
  8. BEST SHOJI: Roundhill Furniture Black Japanese 4-Panel Screen
Best Room Dividers Options

Photo: amazon.com

What to Consider When Choosing the Best Room Dividers

Choices for room dividers abound on today’s market in an array of shapes, sizes, colors, materials, and price points. Sifting through the myriad options can be overwhelming, which is why it’s important to consider a number of factors from the outset. Ahead, find important considerations for selecting the best room divider to meet a variety of needs.

Type of Room Divider

Manufacturers produce different types of room dividers to suit various needs and preferences. A folding room divider, the most versatile, is generally light enough that one person can move it. When not in use, it can be stored in a closet or another out-of-the-way place. Some folding screens can be custom sized from three panels to eight.

For a more permanent solution, room dividers that hang from the ceiling—either accordion-style, folding screens suspended from a track, or screens made of fabric or intricately woven macramé cord—are available.

Large shelving units make attractive and utilitarian room dividers that offer two advantages: increasing storage space and partitioning a room into distinct areas.

Function and Privacy Level

Decide if the room divider needs to create a solid division within a room or is simply to enhance the decor. If the goal is to create privacy, the screen should be constructed from a solid, opaque material. However, many room dividers block light, which can create a dark area in the room.

On the other hand, a room screen with a cut-out design or transparent fabric allows light to filter into the space. A traditional, Asian-inspired shoji screen’s wooden frame contains heavy-duty rice paper that permits diffused light to come through. These screens offer partial privacy as well as serving as a decorative accent, but they don’t fully conceal a portion of the space.

Size

The screen’s size is another factor that affects the screen’s privacy. The screen must be both wide and tall enough to block the view of the concealed area.

Some manufacturers offer folding room dividers in various sizes based on the number of panels in the unit. With more panels hinged together, the folding divider takes up more space in a room to cover a larger area. A simple folding screen with three panels serves as a small backdrop and offers a moderate level of privacy.

Hanging screens made of fabric or other flexible materials can be adapted to various sizes. They can even extend across an entire room, dividing the space into two sections.

Material and Style

To complement myriad style preferences, manufacturers offer room dividers in a broad array of materials, colors, and designs. Room dividers are usually constructed in one of these ways:

  • Woven rattan or wicker material encased in a wooden or metal frame
  • Wooden slats in a wooden frame, similar to a traditional shutter
  • Heavy-duty fabric or flexible plastic in a suspended room divider
  • Partially transparent fabric or macramé as a hanging screen
  • Shelving unit constructed from wood or fiberboard
  • Wood frame upholstered with padding and covered in fabric

Ease of Use

A folding room divider, constructed of multiple panels hinged together, offers maximum ease of use. If the screen is not intended to be a permanent fixture in the room, a folding unit is the most versatile and portable choice.

For example, the best room dividers for home-office use can be easily and quickly set up when needed. A solid-color folding screen serves as a professional-looking backdrop for video conferences. When the workday is over, the screen folds out of sight.

After the initial installation, accordion-style screens suspended from the ceiling are easy to use. Threaded onto curtain rods or hanging from tracks, they’re easy to push out of the way or pull out for privacy when needed.

Our Top Picks

We searched for high-quality room dividers in a variety of styles and materials at a range of price points. Here’s our list of recommended room dividers.

Best Overall

The Best Room Dividers Option: Rose Home Fashion 5.6 Ft Partition Wood Room Divider
Photo: amazon.com

This Rose Home Fashion room divider is available in four or five panels and three options in color and wood finish, including brown, coconut, and natural. The panels are made of wood slats, similar to a window shutter. The slats are close together to create a solid partition between two spaces. The three shelves that extend across the unit provide an ideal place to store books or to showcase decor accessories and memorabilia.

The four-panel option is 67 inches wide and tall. The five-panel option is 79 inches wide, yet it’s lightweight and folds for storage.

Product Specs

  • Dimensions: 67 inches wide (four-panel) by 67 inches high
  • Weight: 31.6 pounds
  • Material: Wood

Pros

  • Shelving
  • Offers privacy
  • Wood construction
  • Choice of colors, finishes, and sizes

Cons

  • Opaque; does not allow light through

Get the Rose Home Fashion room divider on Amazon.

Best Bang For the Buck

The Best Room Dividers Option: Bayou Breeze Cecilia 68.5'' H Room Divider
Photo: wayfair.com

Weighing only 11 pounds, the Cecilia room divider is easy to fold and store when not in use. It stands 68.5 inches in height, and its opacity provides complete privacy.

Bayou Breeze makes the Cecilia room divider in a selection of four colors, including beige, black, brown, and ivory. Additionally, shoppers may customize the desired number of panels to include three-, four-, six-, or eight-panel designs.

Each panel has a wood frame with an interior surface made of bamboo rattan. The intricately woven pattern of the bamboo exudes a nature-inspired, artistic vibe.

Product Specs

  • Dimensions: 52 inches wide (three-panel option) by 68.5 inches high
  • Weight: 11 pounds
  • Material: Wood and bamboo rattan

Pros

  • Lightweight and foldable
  • Natural materials
  • Choice of colors and number of panels
  • Offers privacy

Cons

  • Opaque; does not allow light through
  • No shelving

Get the Bayou Breeze Cecilia room divider at Wayfair.

Best Modern

The Best Room Dividers Option: Minted for West Elm Modern Screen
Photo: westelm.com

West Elm collaborates with the Minted community of independent artists to source the modern-design fabrics for this upholstered room divider. Choose from a selection of 65 fabrics in gorgeous colors to complement modern decor. To facilitate the decision-making process, West Elm will send customers up to 15 free fabric swatches.

Due to its upholstered design, this room divider offers both privacy and sound absorption. The frame is constructed in Mexico from kiln-dried, sustainably sourced wood. With clean lines and a unique, modern fabric, this room divider is art for a contemporary space.

Product Specs 

  • Dimensions: 49.5 inches wide by 72 inches high
  • Weight: 40 pounds
  • Material: Wood frame with customizable fabric in 65 choices

Pros

  • Offers privacy
  • Large selection of modern-design fabrics
  • Sustainably sourced materials
  • Taller than other room dividers

Cons

  • Fairly heavy
  • Not as wide as some options
  • Opaque; does not allow light through

Get the Minted for West Elm room divider at West Elm.

Best Rustic

The Best Room Dividers Option: Olivia & May Farmhouse Wood Room Divider Screen
Photo: target.com

Use this Olivia & May rustic room divider to create a charming statement piece for a room decorated in farmhouse or shabby-chic style. The heavily distressed antique-white paint along with burlap fabric in the faux window panes give the illusion of an aged piece from the past.

Although the design features faux arched windows, the piece is solid, with medium-density fiberboard (MDF) backing and a frame constructed from Chinese fir wood. This three-panel screen provides privacy.

When not in use, the screen folds on its metal hinges. Weighing 30.87 pounds, it’s fairly easy to move and store.

Product Specs

  • Dimensions: 48 inches wide by 71 inches high
  • Weight: 30.87 pounds
  • Material: Chinese fir wood and medium-density fiberboard (MDF)

Pros

  • Offers privacy
  • Popular farmhouse decorating style
  • Sturdy frame and backing
  • Portable

Cons

  • Opaque; does not allow light through
  • Not as wide as some room dividers
  • No shelving

Get the Olivia & May room divider at Target.

Best Boho

The Best Room Dividers Option: Livalaya Large Macrame Curtain
Photo: amazon.com

Reminiscent of tribal, Aztec, and bohemian design styles, this large macramé curtain partitions a room without blocking the light. It’s designed in Oregon and woven in India with 4-millimeter 100 percent cotton cord. In addition to serving as a room divider, the piece serves as an airy, open-weave work of art.

Hang this macramé curtain from the ceiling or from a suspended curtain rod to serve as a room divider. With a 50-inch width and 78-inch height, the curtain covers a large area. It also makes an attractive wall hanging or a covering for patio sliding doors. The materials in this curtain are all natural, sustainably sourced, and biodegradable.

Product Specs 

  • Dimensions: 50 inches wide by 78 inches high
  • Weight: 4 pounds
  • Material: 100 percent cotton

Pros

  • See-through; light filters in
  • Lightweight
  • Attractive, decorative piece
  • Sustainable, renewable, biodegradable, 100 percent cotton

Cons

  • Must be installed (suspended from the ceiling or a curtain rod)
  • Not as easy to set up and take down as other options
  • Doesn’t provide privacy

Get the Livalaya macramé curtain on Amazon or Livalaya.

Best Cut-Out

The Best Room Dividers Option: Urban Outfitters Amber Carved Wood Room Divider
Photo: urbanoutfitters.com

Measuring 60 inches in width and 72 inches in height, this Urban Outfitters piece is substantial enough to make a decor statement while it delineates a large space. Light filters through the delicately carved openings in the wood. The materials include mango wood and medium-density fiberboard (MDF). It can be wiped clean with a damp cloth.

Product Specs 

  • Dimensions: 60 inches wide by 72 inches high
  • Weight: 37.47 pounds
  • Material: Mango wood and medium-density fiberboard (MDF)

Pros

  • Artistic design
  • Wood construction
  • Allows light to filter through
  • Ample width and height

Cons

  • Doesn’t provide complete privacy
  • No shelving

Get the Urban Outfitters room divider at Urban Outfitters or Modesens.

Best With Shelving

The Best Room Dividers Option: IKEA Kallax Shelf Unit
Photo: ikea.com

With sleek Scandinavian styling and plenty of storage space, this IKEA Kallax shelving unit functions as a room divider.

Situate the IKEA Kallax shelving unit in a room to divide the space as needed. It’s a substantial piece of furniture, measuring almost 58 inches wide, 15 inches deep, and almost 58 inches in height.

Interior partitions divide the shelving unit into 16 cubbies, each measuring 13 by 13 inches. Within these cubbies, users can display plants, art objects, books, and more. For organizational purposes, IKEA offers cube-shaped bins and baskets as well as inserts that feature drawers or doors. The storage containers are made to fit the cubbies, and they are sold separately.

IKEA makes the Kallax shelf unit from fiberboard, particleboard, plastic, and paper filling material. The company strives to use recycled and renewable materials when possible. Select from four color choices, including black-brown, light gray, white, and high-gloss white.

Product Specs 

  • Dimensions: 57.88 inches wide by 15.38 inches deep by 57.88 inches high
  • Weight: 73 pounds
  • Material: Particleboard and fiberboard with plastic edging

Pros

  • Storage space
  • Substantial piece of furniture
  • Customizable with bins, baskets, and inserts
  • Attractive Scandinavian design

Cons

  • Requires assembly
  • Not easily portable
  • See-through; does not provide privacy

Get the Kallax shelf unit at IKEA.

Best Shoji

The Best Room Dividers Option: Roundhill Furniture Black Japanese 4-Panel Screen
Photo: amazon.com

A shoji screen, a traditional fixture in Japanese homes, consists of a wooden frame with panes of rice paper, wicker, or cloth. Used as a room divider, the screen provides privacy while allowing diffused light to filter through.

This shoji room divider from Roundhill Furniture, which is made of wood with a black finish, consists of four panels, each with 21 rectangular panes. Rice paper printed with plum blossoms on a tree branch is on both the front and back sides of the panes.

Measuring 71 inches by 71 inches, this four-panel shoji screen covers a large area, yet it weighs only 11 pounds and folds flat for portability and storage.

Product Specs

  • Dimensions: 71 inches wide by 71 inches high
  • Weight: 11 pounds
  • Material: Wood with heavy-duty rice paper

Pros

  • Allows diffused light through the rice paper
  • Lightweight and portable
  • Complements Asian-inspired decor

Cons

  • May not offer complete privacy
  • No shelves

Get the Roundhill Furniture room divider on Amazon or Hayneedle.

Our Verdict

We recommend the four-panel Rose Home Fashion room divider with shelving for its good looks and versatile functionality. The Bayou Breeze Cecilia room divider exhibits quality at a budget-friendly price. With bamboo rattan construction and choice of colors, the Cecilia offers optimal value.

How We Chose the Best Room Dividers

To select the best room dividers, we considered both their appearance and their functionality. Knowing that shoppers typically want a room divider not only to provide privacy but to also serve as decor, we looked at a broad array of attractive options.

As a starting point, we read five articles detailing the qualities of optimal room dividers, as well as the product descriptions for more than 20 options. These represent more than 10 manufacturers as well as 12 online retail outlets. We focused on room dividers consisting of hinged panels that fold for portability and versatile use, which appear to be the most common type of room divider. They are available in a broad range of appealing styles, materials, and sizes. For variety, we included a shelving unit as well as a hanging macramé piece.

FAQs

Unlike a sofa or a dining table, a room divider is not an essential piece of furniture, but it can contribute to the versatility and usability of a living or working space. For privacy or to make a large room serve a more versatile function, a room divider can be a wise investment. Shoppers often ask the following questions about room dividers.

Q. Are room dividers worth it?

To divide a room for multiple purposes, room dividers make a living or working space more versatile, which makes them worth the price for many.

Q. What are the best room dividers?

The best room dividers suit the needs and tastes of users. Depending on preferences, a room divider might be permanently installed or portable.

Q. What can I use as a room divider?

Hanging curtains, folding screens, and shelving units work well as room dividers.

Q. How many panels do I need in a room divider?

For stability, a folding room divider needs at least three panels. Additional panels may be added to increase the width of the screen.

Q. How do I clean my room divider?

Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for cleaning a room divider. Dust a room divider with a soft, damp cloth.