8 Reasons Designers Are Painting Ceilings

These interior design experts explain how the concept of painting your ceiling can elevate your home's design — in more than one way.

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July 25, 2018

Photo By: Mary Costa

Photo By: Amy Bartlam

Photo By: Chipper Hatter

Photo By: David Lauer Photography, Design By: Devon Tobin and Miranda Cullen of Duet Design Group

Photo By: DKOR Interiors

Photo By: Alyssa Kirsten

Photo By: Terra Cotta Design Build

Photo By: Lauren Rubin Architecture PLLC

Make the Space Feel Larger

Black ceilings can make a small space feel larger, explains Caitlin Murray of Black Lacquer Design, located in Los Angeles. "I chose a velvety black for the ceiling to make the space feel that much larger. As counterintuitive as it might sound, a black ceiling can open up a small space and create the illusion that the ceilings are higher than they really are. In this particular space, the black ceiling and bright white walls also balanced the more saturated hues of the furnishings and decor."

Elevated Design

Painting a ceiling is another way to create impactful design. "Ceilings are often an afterthought, but I like to accent them because it can really change the entire mood of the space. Highlighting them with a dark color or a patterned wallpaper all of a sudden elevates the entire design," says Kelly Sutton of Sutton House, located in New Orleans.

Unexpected Interest

Implementing a striped ceiling into this kitchen's design creates a lasting impact, explains Calif. designer Kristianne Watts. "We wanted to bring some color and a little interest into this kitchen, and play up the decorative pendants over the island. The ceiling was a blank canvas to create something that would be classic and give a little unexpected element to this space. We liked the idea of bold stripes to run with this transitional modern home."

Ceilings Are the 5th Wall

Often forgotten, ceilings left blank don't enhance the room's design. "We consider ceilings the 5th wall. As designers, it is our responsibility to address every aspect of a space including the ceiling. From accent paints to a fabulous wallcovering or an insane light fixture we use the ceiling as the 'cherry on top' of a thoughtful room design," explains Miranda Cullen with Duet Design Group.

Bold Design Feature

Painting a ceiling a color that makes a statement creates impactful design, explains Miami-based designer, Ivonne Ronderos of DKOR Interiors. "Painting and material applications on ceilings are a great way to add a bold design statement to any space. What’s typically a forgotten surface, by treating it, it immediately makes a space feel unique, while adding a playful approach to design."

Creative and Fun

Lauren Rubin of Lauren Rubin Architecture in NYC, explains that bringing a colorful ceiling into a kids' room is the perfect way to bring creativity and imagination into a space. "The kids love the opportunity to add a color to their room, and they typically love bold and bright colors. The ceilings are the perfect place to insert their creative and fun nature."

Added Drama and Elegance

Ili Hidalgo-Nilsson of Terracotta Design Build in Atlanta says, "high-design concepts can be easily incorporated into any teen room. In this room, a painted ceiling with a defined trim edge adds a bit of drama and elegance, but the festive blue color keeps it youthful and fresh. Who knows? A little extra design attention might encourage your teen to keep the room in tip-top order!"

Fun & Whimsical Feature Wall

"I started painted ceilings in response to my clients wish to keep the walls of a room white. I am a big fan of color, especially in kid’s playrooms and bedrooms. The ceiling is a more whimsical, fun feature and the walls can still remain a more muted color," says NYC designer, Lauren Rubin of Lauren Rubin Architecture.