Things are looking up! The ceiling’s role in your room’s décor

It’s hanging over your head every day—a bland, lackluster ceiling. The ceiling is often one of the most overlooked areas of a room when it comes to interior decorating. Yet, if you look beyond the popcorn ceiling and water stains, you may find your ceiling can be an outlet for your most inspired creativity.

“The ceiling offers one of the few truly blank canvases in interior design because it’s never obscured by doorways, windows or furniture,” said Sherrie Towne, a ceiling décor expert with Focal Point Architectural Products. “Some of the most stunning examples of the marriage of architecture and art can be found on the ceilings of historic buildings, from Grand Central in New York to the Sistine Chapel.”

Dressing up your ceiling doesn’t require that you hire a master painter or even a handyman. Thanks to some innovative new products, giving your ceiling pizzazz with architectural details like medallions and crown moulding, color and texture is well within the capabilities of most do-it-yourselfers.

From classic and high-impact to simple and low-tech, here are some common ways to dress up a ceiling:

Add a decorative medallion

The essence of architectural sophistication for the ceiling, medallions have adorned castles and palaces through the ages. In modern homes, they are particularly effective in a dining room above a chandelier. In traditional times, you would have hired a professional to render a medallion in white plaster that matched the ceiling color. Today, you can find pre-constructed, pre-finished medallions that install onto the ceiling to enhance your existing light fixture.

Some products, like Focal Point’s Quick Clips medallion installation system, even eliminate the need to locate studs to hang the medallion and patch screw holes afterward. Available with select Focal Point medallions, the system literally allows you to twist the medallion in place. The company also offers a range of faux finish options to match today’s popular light fixture styles. Whether your light fixture has a metal, wood or crackle finish, Focal Point offers medallions to match.

Crown moulding is king

A must in any upscale home, crown moulding can enhance the décor of virtually any room in the house. Popularly used in dining rooms and living rooms, modern designers are finding creative uses for crown moulding in kitchens, bedrooms and even bathrooms.

Once, getting the corners just right would have taken hours. Now, crown moulding can be installed in half the time by even novice do-it-yourselfers. Focal Point’s Quick Clips moulding installation system eliminates the need to miter corners, find wall studs and patch nail holes, allowing you to prefinish the moulding of your choice and install it in a snap.

Color creates appeal

If you want a low-cost way to make a room look bright, fresh and clean, a new coat of white paint on the ceiling can work wonders. It’s a must if you’re thinking of selling your home. If you plan on staying put and crave some drama, consider adding a ceiling color that contrasts and complements your wall color.

Teture lends visual impact

There are a number of techniques for applying texture to a ceiling, from using spray on textured paint to faux finishing by hand. In some ways, texturing a ceiling can be easier than tackling a wall. Although you’re working overhead, the blank canvas of a ceiling is more forgiving of first-time mistakes. Small errors that might have big impact at eye-level can fade into the distance when they are several feet above your head.

To learn more about easy-to-install medallions and crown moulding, and for other ceiling decorating ideas, visit or call (800) 662-5550.

Courtesy of ARA Content

from the April 4-10, 2007, issue

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