If your family home was built in the 1960’s 70’s or 80’s, ceiling heights are most likely around the 2.3 metre ceiling – 40 cm lower than current designs. And, while a lower ceiling may make a space look cosier, there is a suite of clever tricks you can master to help disguise the low hanging ceiling. We recently asked Vicki Gillingham, Henley Design manager, for the simple steps she recommends you to take if you want your ceilings to soar.
It is all about the paint
Painting the ceilings a lighter colour to the walls helps create the illusion of height in a room. At Henley Design we always specify Dulux Lexicon Qtr strength on ceilings as it’s a beautiful fresh white that opens up the space and compliments any colour scheme teamed with it.
Vicki says, “Painting windows trim in a semi-gloss white and avoid installing heavy curtains or bulky pelmets just above the architraves. Instead installing ceiling mounted tracks with sheers or venetian blinds inside the window reveal where possible to allow the natural light to come through and assist with creating the illusion of higher ceilings.”
Do away with the cornices
Create a more seamless look by removing the cornices which adds to the look of the ceiling height. Upgrading to a square set gives the room a modern and sleek edge, plus the illusion of a higher ceiling. If this upgrade doesn’t fit into your budget, consider swapping a wide cornice for a narrower one, painting it the same colour as the ceiling.
Send in the light
By allowing as much natural light in a room, it helps lighten the walls, which in turn, helps gives the look of higher ceilings. Consider installing low lying ceiling lights or recessed lights such as down lights to achieve a minimalist look and create a sense of height. Avoid chandeliers or pendant lights as that can enclose the room.
“Think about positioning mirrors in a room to help bring in additional light or allow light to bounce into another area, creating the feeling of greater ceiling height or even extra depth to a room or width to an entry way.” Vicki adds.
Keep it on the low
Try selecting furniture such as couches and bookcases which are shorter and not heavy looking. Avoid dark furniture and keep them neutral.
Vicki says, “Adding a peppering of colour in the form of rugs and throws will add personality to a room, while keeping the base palette light and bright adds that much needed balance.”