Much Ado about Ceilings
By: National Association of Home Builders at nahb.org.A ceiling with a pop of color, a stylish ceiling fan or detailed trim work can give a room personality and character. Ceiling décor also can add drama to an otherwise dull space, give the illusion of height in a compact room, or increase the feel of intimacy in a large one. If you have a small home, there are plenty of ways to work around it, for example, by using toilets for small spaces and other compact, space-saving devices, but heightening your ceiling is the most effective way to give the illusion of more room. Making a ceiling the focal point of a room has its challenges though. The right look depends on the style of the home, the size of the room and the desires and taste of the owner or buyer. With so many factors to consider, deciding how to enhance a room by altering the ceiling can be overwhelming. But with so many options and design trends available, the result could make the venture worthwhile. Here are some ideas to consider as you build or remodel your home:
- Fun with Paint – Contrasting ceiling and wall colors give a room modern appeal. Experts recommend using deeper shades, like eggplant or cocoa, to make a large space cozier, and softer ones, white included, to open it up. Or consider a wallpaper – over-scale or bold patterns will definitely keep it interesting. One thing to note: Designers caution against using the same color or pattern on both the walls and the ceiling. Doing so tends to make a room feel small and closeted.
- Structured Design – When it comes to custom ceiling design, the only limit is the imagination. Popular options include coffered ceilings, which feature a symmetrical grid of painted beams; tray ceilings, which give off a recessed look; and ceilings featuring various woods or exposed wood trusses. Detailed trimwork and ceiling medallions also add flair to a room.
- Specialty Lighting – Specialty fixtures make a room rock. Whether it involves a custom or a stock fixture, designers are finding ways to showcase it as a piece of art, rather than just a functional element. Recessed lighting, pendant lamps and chandeliers are being paired with other ceiling details to make a statement with a room’s design.
- Keeping Cool in Style – Among decorative home features, ceiling fans stand out as the most wanted item, with 88 percent of buyers rating them essential and desirable, according to the latest What Home Buyers Want survey by the National Association of Home Builders. In fact, ceiling fans have consistently remained the number one home décor feature over many years. Though in high demand for both their aesthetic appeal and practical application, when it comes to style, it’s all about personal preference and comfort.
- Out of Sight Height – Ceiling height makes an instant impression. Though ceilings that are 9 feet or taller are falling out of favor due to concerns about energy efficiency, high ceilings on the first floor are still desirable, particularly among Millennials. Ceilings that are too high, however, can make a room feel cold and uninviting. That’s why experts recommend the use of light fixtures, ceiling beams and paint to better define a space or make it cozier.