Top It Off With An Accent

Homeowners searching for a unique “wow” factor in their next home remodeling project would do well to try looking up. The 5th wall (your ceiling) is a frequently ignored surface in your home, one that can make a huge impact on the space if given a little special attention.

Some folks are content to simply paint their ceiling a striking color, but adding an architectural element can make a significant design statement. Depending on the existing room, or plans for the addition, different ceiling options may be appropriate.

Beams and Coffered Ceilings:

Beams and coffers are very closely related since they both are visible and extend from the ceiling by a few inches. “Most beams are either decorative in nature, or conceal a structural beam, and typically run in a single direction,” says Normandy Designer Vince Weber. Exposed beams are more commonly found in Tudor or Rustic style homes, but can be modified to work with most aesthetics. Coffers are beams that are typically three to eight inches deep that intersect creating a grid-like pattern on the ceiling which gives the illusion of recessed panels on the ceiling. Coffered ceilings are best suited for traditional styles of homes.

Both decorative beams and coffered ceilings can be added to virtually any room, although it’s recommended to only apply them to spaces that have a minimum ceiling height of eight and a half feet. Because the beams will extend down into the room, you want to be sure there is ample space before adding the decorative element.

Tray and Vaulted Ceilings:

Tray ceilings feature a center section that is several inches (or several feet) higher than the areas around the perimeter of the room. The recessed area can go straight up or at an angle. Depending on the style of the home, this raised area may include decorative trim, up-lighting, or an accent paint color. Tray ceilings make a room appear larger without adding any additional square footage.  “This is often a nice alternative to a vaulted ceiling, and is easier to implement in a remodel,” notes Vince.

A vaulted ceiling provides the greatest opportunity to create height within a room but they are best reserved for a newly constructed space.  “These are contextually appropriate for homes built within the last 30 years or so, and may look out of place in older homes,” says Vince. There are some cases when a tray or vaulted ceiling can be incorporated into existing space, but are most commonly seen as part of a new room addition.

Adding a unique ceiling design to your home remodel can be a striking focal point in an unexpected place. Schedule a time to talk with Vince to discuss the possibilities for your home, or see what other people have to say about working with the Normandy team.


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