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A Guide to Popular Ceiling Styles

Ceiling styles found in homes today range from flat white to decoratively dramatic. Discover a ceiling style that fits your home décor and let Armstrong ceiling tiles and panels help you achieve the look.

The style of your ceiling is more than structural. Ceilings are as integral to conveying interior design as the walls, flooring and furniture in a room. There are a surprising number of ceiling styles common in homes today – from a simple, flat surface that barely gets noticed to dramatic and decorative ceilings that really grab your attention.

If you want to enhance the beauty of your home with a distinctive new ceiling, a basic understanding of popular ceiling styles can guide your decision. For inspiration and a wide range of ceiling ideas, visit Armstrong’s photo gallery, filled with dozens of rooms featuring Armstrong ceiling products and tips to help you achieve the look that is uniquely yours.

Conventional Ceiling

This is the ceiling so commonly seen in the vast majority of homes. Typically 8 feet high to conform to standard construction material sizes, conventional ceilings have a simple flat surface and accessible height, making them easy to decorate. Create a unique and attractive tin ceiling look with decorative metal ceilings by Armstrong. Or, in just one weekend, transform your conventional ceiling into a work of art with a coffered ceiling..

Suspended Ceilings

A suspended or “drop” ceiling is a secondary ceiling that hangs below an existing flat ceiling. It’s made up of lightweight, acoustic ceiling panels laid into a metal grid that is suspended from the ceiling by hangers or wires. Suspended ceilings stylishly hide wiring, plumbing, mechanical fixtures and the original old ceiling. Armstrong offers a variety of unique ceiling styles, such as HomeStyle Ceilings, that add the right flair, dimension and warmth for a fresh new look.

Coffered Ceiling

This dramatic ceiling style has a grid of sunken panels divided and accented by molding. The effect creates a waffle-like pattern that takes a commanding role in a room. Coffered ceilings of the past were works of art made with carved stone or prized wood species. Today, the same classic ceiling style is available with the ease and economy of a suspended ceiling in Easy Elegance™ coffered ceiling panels from Armstrong.

Cove Ceilings

This ceiling style is characterized by curved molding that joins the wall and ceiling in a smooth transition, creating a hollow recess or cove overhead. With no sharp corners or lines to define the edges of the room, the look is soft and graceful. Cove ceilings are often the crowning glory of a well-appointed, formal room.

Tray Ceiling

Tray ceilings are flat with a rectangular center that is either “popped out” or inverted to add architectural interest.  Recessed lighting is commonly featured in this ceiling style. Tray ceilings are often seen in kitchens and dining rooms. Because of the two levels of ceiling height, tray ceilings can make a small room look taller. To enhance the look of a tray ceiling, use Tin Look Printable Ceiling Tiles finished to match the ceiling color or another accent color in the room. 

Cathedral Ceiling

Visually impressive cathedral ceilings have high, equally sloping sides that join like an upside down V at the highest point possible, usually the peak of the roof. Cathedral ceilings soar to 15 feet or higher, creating a dramatic design element, as well as an open, spacious feel to a room or entryway. Top off your cathedral ceiling with Woodhaven Ceiling Planks and see how the natural look of wood brings a touch of warmth and elegance to your room.

Vaulted Ceiling

A vaulted ceiling has unequal sloping sides that meet at a high point in a room. The asymmetry is the result of one wall being higher than its opposing wall. Like its cathedral ceiling counterpart, a vaulted ceiling adds volume, giving the illusion of a much larger room.

Shed Ceiling

A shed ceiling has a flat surface, like a conventional ceiling, that slants upward to one side. These ceilings are typically seen in homes with dormers or are built to accommodate an attic space above. The uneven wall height created by the rise of the ceiling gives the room a refreshing charm. Shed ceilings look great covered in classic beadboard.

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