During the process of planning the interiors, the ceiling is often the most overlooked element. Usually, they are painted in white or a light shade to match the rest of the room, but they are an invaluable element that can be utilized to enhance the style of your home. From painting the ceiling to match or contrast the colours in a room to incorporating architectural features that make the ceiling the focal point of a space, there are a variety of design techniques that you can use for the ceiling in your house.
Today, we present tips and techniques on using ceiling design to maximise the visual impact of any home, whether you want to decorate a small apartment in Bangalore or a bungalow in Trivandrum.
While there is nothing wrong with having a plain white ceiling as it brings an airy feeling to the space, choosing the right colour and finish for the ceiling paint can make a world of difference to the style of a room. In a small room, using a shade that is lighter than the wall paint helps to raise the ceiling visually and make the area look bigger than it is. Similarly, a larger room can be made to feel much cosier by using a darker shade on the ceiling.
The colour of the ceiling paint can be used to create the desired mood in a room, whether you want to make the space feel more intimate or expansive. To add a dramatic effect, use paint with a glossy finish, but before you do, make sure that the ceiling surface is smooth as otherwise, imperfections will be more noticeable.
A ceiling doesn’t have to be a flat horizontal surface. You should look at it as a blank canvas that can be used to create a stunning architectural detail that becomes the highlight of the room. Installing beams is a simple technique to add character to a room. Depending upon the overall design style of the space, you can choose a material that matches the look. In a rustic home, exposed wooden beams enhance the warmth of the space. Exposed metal beams and pipes can add to the effect on an industrial-style house.
Besides exposed beams, you can use a variety of techniques to add uniqueness to your ceiling.
Tray ceiling: In this type of ceiling, the central part is recessed, and usually, the light fixtures are installed in the deepest part. It’s an excellent technique to create visual depth as it tricks the eyes into believing that the ceiling is higher than it is.
Vaulted ceiling: A vaulted ceiling is one that slopes, usually in the same angle and shape as the roof. They can feature slopes that meet in the middle or have uneven slopes or barrel arches.
Coffered ceiling: In this style, the ceiling comprises a grid of rectangular or square panels. The main lighting feature hangs from the central panel, while the others can have smaller recessed lights. This technique is often employed by interior architects and designers to add character to a room that is minimally decorated.
Domed ceiling: An architectural feature that is seen in old churches and buildings, a domed ceiling can be a perfect addition to a large home that is designed in the classic style. It can be made more stunning or functional by using stained glass or making it double up as a skylight for inviting natural light into a room.
Cove ceiling: This type of ceiling features a narrow border or section that extends from the four walls to frame the actual ceiling. Traditionally, the cove gently curves upwards from the wall to the ceiling. However, in modern homes, it’s common to find more angular designs. Cove ceilings are also used as a tool to create ambient lighting in the room by insetting lights in the gap between the frame and the ceiling.
Get inspired by these lighting ideas to make the ceilings in your home look stunning.
The most commonly used treatment for ceilings is to paint them in a lighter shade than the colour of the walls. Interior designers usually get their team of painters to mix a few drops of white in the colour of the wall paint to achieve this. However, going with darker and bolder colours presents its own advantages.
A ceiling painted in a dark shade such as navy blue, charcoal grey or black not only adds drama to the interiors but also brings a more intimate feel to the space. When using a dark colour for the ceiling, make sure that it is contrasted by a light shade on the walls and in the furnishings. Choosing bright colours such as yellow or turquoise blue for the ceiling can bring a fun element to the interiors and contribute a cheerful element to the ambiance. It’s a terrific idea for functional spaces such as bathrooms and kitchens, especially when it is contrasted by fixtures in white or other neutral shades.
Similarly, a cool colour such as light blue or green for the bedroom ceiling can enhance the soothing feel of the space, besides providing a pleasant contrast to the neutral white, beige or grey that is popularly used on bedroom walls.
For a plain ceiling, all you need is a coat of paint. However, if you want to use the ceiling to add an interesting architectural element to your room, then a variety of materials can be used depending on the type of ceiling.
Wood: Besides being used for ceiling beams, wooden boards or planks can be used to cover the ceiling and add warmth to the space. You can get wooden planks for your ceiling at a starting price of INR 175 per square feet.
Plasterboard: Earlier, plaster was used to cover the ceiling by applying the paste over wood strips. Nowadays, plasterboard, which is made of the same material, presents an easy to install option. It comes in prefabricated boards that can be nailed or screwed onto the ceiling. Gypsum or plasterboard is an affordable material that costs around INR 20 to INR 125 per square feet.
Metal: Usually used as a decorative component to add style to a ceiling, metal comes in embossed sheets, which are suspended from the existing ceiling to cover unsightly wires and pipes. The cost of a metal ceiling cover can vary depending upon the material. Stainless steel sheets are around INR 225 per square feet, whereas aluminium is INR 70 per square feet.
PVC boards: PVC or vinyl boards are a cost-effective option for covering ceilings. They are great for insulation and are waterproof, but they release chemical substances that can affect your health in the long term. The most basic PVC board or plank for ceilings cost only INR 70 per square feet, but this can go up to as much as INR 280 per square feet depending upon the finish and design.
Aerolite boards: These boards, which are made from calcium silicate, come with a range of benefits, including being lightweight, waterproof and resistant to termites. They cost between INR 140 to INR 230 on an average.
If you are unsure about which of these is the most suitable option for your ceiling, it’s best to consult an interior designer.
False ceilings or ceiling covers can be installed either directly on the pre-existing ceiling or by suspending the new cover from the ceiling. Direct installation is an option when you use wooden beams or boards. When you want to have a gap between the ceiling and the cover to access wiring or pipes, it’s best to suspend the ceiling by creating a frame on which the boards or tiles are attached.
While you can install a false ceiling on your own, it’s advisable to use the services of a professional to ensure that the finish is perfect.
Get tips on the factors to consider before designing a false ceiling.
While ceiling design can upgrade the style quotient of a room, it may not be required in every space. Be aware of this list of don’ts so that you don’t make a costly mistake.
1. Don’t use a suspended or drop ceiling in a room with a very low ceiling height as it will reduce the space between the floor and the ceiling and make the area look small and cramped.
2. For a small room, don’t install an ornate ceiling with too many elements as it can make the room look crowded.
3 If you are using a light material such as plasterboard for the ceiling cover, don’t install heavy lighting fixtures such as chandeliers, which require the support of a much stronger base.
4. Don’t forget to make provisions for lights, fans and other fixtures before the ceiling is installed. Otherwise, you will have to bring down the whole frame to make changes.
5. It’s important to make a list of features that you expect from the ceiling, whether it’s insulation or sound proofing. Failure to do so will result in choosing inefficient material that doesn’t meet your requirements.
The ceiling of your home is referred to as the fifth wall for a good reason. You can use its surface to decorate your home, just as you would do with a wall. Work with a professional interior architect or designer who understands your requirements and gives you ideas on how you can completely transform the look of your interiors with a stylish ceiling.