When designing a home, the ceiling may not be first on your list of priorities. While the ceiling is often overlooked, its design can greatly influence the atmosphere and aesthetic value of a home. The popular styles of ceilings have shifted over the years, and for a modern home, there are some options that are considered more desirable than others. A conventional ceiling (which is flat and typically 8 or 9 feet high) is a safe choice, but there are alternatives which can add character and flair to a room.
One of the more dramatic options, the vaulted ceiling grants depth to a room by drawing the gaze upward. These ceilings are more appropriate on the floor below the attic or roof as a vaulted ceiling on the ground floor could result in serious design limitations. The vaulted ceiling invokes the interior of a cathedral, making a space seem larger and more open, and this design is one that can be considered timeless.
A tray ceiling is born from a conventional ceiling, but at the center of a given room, the ceiling is recessed about 6 inches to create more depth and increased opportunities for customization. From the shape of the cutout to the paint used to adorn the recess, the possibilities are endless. A tray ceiling is especially attractive in a kitchen or bedroom.
Exposed elements of construction are coinciding with the industrial trends of interior design and decor, and the beam ceiling adheres to this trend well. Such a style adds interest to an otherwise plain ceiling. False beams can be added to a ceiling without requiring the installation of actual support beams, and they can be built into a variety of other ceilings such as a vaulted design.
One of the most expensive and intricate options, the coffered ceiling is certainly one of the most interesting and attractive. Combining crown molding and the beam ceiling style, the coffered ceiling typically creates a geometric pattern upon the ceiling, added unprecedented depth, dimension, and interest.
This unique ceiling design is named the barrel vault because its curved arch is comparable to a barrel when cut in half. The barrel vault design originated in ancient Rome and was often used to adorn hallways. Enhancing the dramatic effect of the arch by adorning the design with stone or brick is a popular choice, but more modern designers will opt instead for white paint. This design can also be combined with others such as the beam or coffered ceiling to add additional depth.