Friday, January 22, 2010

Ask the Designer - Vaulted Ceilings

A new feature - Ask the Designer
Send me your Interior Design or Decorating questions via blog comments, email, Facebook or Twitter and I'll blog an answer with some visual examples. Our first question is from Meri via Fabebook. Enjoy and send in your questions!

“If you have high or vaulted ceilings and you hang pictures at eye level (so you can see them) what do you do about all that empty space at the top?” ~Meri

How you handle vaulted or high ceilings depends on a couple of variables about the room and how you need the room to feel or function. Before you begin your decorating plan, look at the room and determine how you want it to feel. Is the room very large and open? If yes, do you need to create a cozier, more comfortable environment? If this is the case, it is best to hang artwork in the lower area of the wall, leaving the upper area blank. This will create the illusion of a line where the room exists and the space above feels as if it is not really part of the room. This could also be emphasized with painting the lower area of the wall a darker color. A slightly different effect can be achieved by hanging more and/or larger pieces at the bottom of the wall and moving up with smaller, lighter pieces. This adds a visual weight to the lower portion of the wall that will make the room feel cozier.

However, often I see high ceilings in rooms that actually have quite a small footprint.  Here you will want to use the height of the walls and ceilings to add a feeling of additional space in the room. In this case it is best to hang art either higher or on multiple levels of the wall to make that tall space a part of the whole room. 

The photos are an example from one of my client projects. The room has very high and steeply sloped ceiling while the footprint of the room is relatively small. To emphasize the height and thereby the overall volume of the room, we chose large artwork to really utilize the total wall space. We also chose to emphasize the slope of the wall by using long, narrow pieces and hanging them to follow the slope of the ceiling.

Before - there is a tiny painting to the left of the TV that you can hardly see and makes no use of the wall.

After - the large artwork draws the eye up, making the whole room feel larger.

Beautiful Habitat: Luxury Interior Design


Anonymous said...

What about a high vaulted. loft style home with stairs? I've been trying to determine what to put along my stairs but haven't found any ideas or pictures to follow.

Anonymous said...

It's very exiting to find your website. Thanks for sharing your talent and helpful information with us. You are a bright light!

Melissa Williams said...

I have been looking for something just like this! Now... where to buy art like these...

Beautiful Habitat said...

Hi Melissa,
Sadly the store where I found these has closed. However, should I come across anything similar, I will let you know.


Related Posts with Thumbnails