Last week, we got an email from our reader, Kathy, asking for advice on how to deal with decorating their living room with a high ceiling.
Given our hot and humid climate, a high ceiling is always a desirable feature in a house as it provides room for warm air to rise. However, it can be quite a challenge to fill up the additional vertical space to make everything look balanced and proportioned.
Here are three things that you might want to consider to achieve a cozier space in spite of the height.
1) LOWER THE CEILING
It’s difficult to achieve an intimate and cozy atmosphere in a room that has a high ceiling. To scale down the height, incorporate false beams and trusses (top photo, via elements of style) into the design if you have the budget for the additional interior work.
For a quick fix, use drop/pendant lamps instead of ceiling-mounted lamps. Pendant lamps lower the light source, darkening the upper half of the room to downplay the height.
2) HIGH CEILING = TALL FURNISHINGS
A high ceiling naturally calls for tall interior furnishings to create a balanced composition. Furnishing it with mainly low or short items will only create contrast, highlighting the height of the space.
Install longer curtains by hanging them a few more inches above the window. Add vertical items like a tall plant (photo above, via brown design), tall twigs on a vase, and a few tall furniture pieces such as an armoire or an upright bookcase. Like pendant lamps, these pieces create a middle or transition point between the floor and the ceiling above.
3) FILL YOUR WALLS
A high ceiling also means more wall space. Avoid hanging a single row of small to medium-sized frames. They will just look tiny and lonely against the tall wall. To minimize the appearance of bare, boring surfaces, fill up at least one wall with an assortment of framed photos or artworks (see ana’s post on photo walls). This strategy minimizes the height of the room by visually dividing the height into several horizontal sections created by the display. (photo above via housetohome)
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