Often overlooked, white, and under appreciated, ceilings are an interior surface that needs some attention. Instead of leaving it blank why not use the ceiling as another area to bring interest to your room, add a contrasting finish, or introduce a cool pattern. The possibilities are endless when you take the time to look up and integrate the ceiling into your design plan.
Adding an unexpected finish to the ceiling is a design tool that I don’t get to use often enough. Why is everyone scared to go dramatic on their ceiling? If you take the plunge the rewards will be great, I promise. I painted stripes on the ceiling at my previous house, and it was one of my favorite features.
Wood planks, beams, and accents are the best way to add a rustic element to your space. A mainstay in kitchens, they also add warmth to other rooms in your home. If you’re going with wood keep the finish translucent and the grain exposed, painted brown beams never look good. I like the repetition and order the wood brings, and how it pulls your eye upward. These kitchens are stylish in their own right, but adding the wood up top gives one more layer of interest and texture to complete the room.
Adding decorative molding to your ceiling is as simple or complicated as you want to make it. The cover image of this post is a ceiling I designed where molding was added to create a border around the space, and the whole ceiling was painted light bluish gray. The design and installation was straightforward, and the border helped to separate spaces in an open plan home. Some of these tracery designs and coffers can be expensive and time consuming, but the end result is a work of art. I prefer to keep the color and finish simple on these intricate designs, but I do love the wood paneling in the center.
Wallpaper on the ceiling is my favorite way to use wall covering. Sometimes it’s hard to commit to a pattern on all four walls, but using it on the ceiling lets you bring in the pattern with less surface area and cost. Papered ceilings seem to be popular in kids rooms and nurseries, but under utilized in grown up spaces. It is a shame, because it is such a nice way to bring in a fun pattern or color. The stripe paper rolling down the wall in the center picture is so good. It’s an accent wall I can actually get behind.
The easiest upgrade to any ceiling. Fun colors, lacquer finishes, and moody hues are all up for grabs. Each of these rooms look so good that it makes me want to paint every ceiling a different color, but I won’t. Instead, use the painted ceiling where it brings the most impact. A small powder room or formal dining room can all handle a jolt of color. The first image shows a light Tiffany blue ceiling brightening up a laundry room, and in combination with that great wallpaper and light fixture makes the utilitarian space much more fun.
I’ve put together a cool dining room to show how easy it is to incorporate a subtle patterned wallpaper into a space. Using a light wallpaper with silver dots adds shine and pattern to the room. It helps to contrast the matte finishes in the space, but doesn’t compete with the artwork, rug, or chandelier. It brings in a youthful element, and is much more interesting than a plain white ceiling.