Tuesday, September 29, 2009

The fifth wall. (And another dining room reveal!)

OK peeps. I've been wanting to talk about this topic for awhile. It's something very few do, but it makes a HUGE impact in a room. (In my little bitty opinion.)

The decorating element I love to add to a room is one most people never think of doing -- painting your ceiling. Not another coat of white -- a color. EGADS! Yes, I said it! Color on your ceiling! Ahhh, I've gone and lost my mind, right?

It is by far the one addition that I think makes a HUGE difference in the way a room feels, and it costs $20 for a gallon of paint.

The owner of the decorating firm I worked with turned me onto this, and I was SUCH a nonbeliever at first. I was hooked after our first painted ceiling though. I mean, head over heels in love, hooked. There are some "rules" that you may want to follow that I don't, and I'll tell you those in a bit. Also, there are some myths about painting a ceiling I'll address too.

I had the ceiling in our family room/kitchen combo painted the same color as the walls and absolutely love it:
Reason number one I love painted ceilings -- if you have crown molding, it will make them absolutely pop off the walls when your ceilings are painted. When you have crown and a white ceiling, at least the upper half of it washes away, and for all that work and money, you should SEE it. ;)

I am chomping at the bit to get the crown installed in these rooms, because I know it will look ahhhhmazing against the Sisal colored walls and ceiling. ;)

In our chocolate colored powder room, I painted the ceiling the same color as the walls, and look how the molding pops!:
I added a thin coat of my glaze over the paint, just to give it a little bit of fun. (I think you can do whatever the heck you want and get dramatic in three rooms -- laundry rooms, powder rooms and dining rooms.)

In our son's bathroom I did the same blue as the ceiling in his room:
I didn't go the same color as the walls in these rooms because I wanted to tie in the blue that was used throughout, I wanted it to give the look of a sky, and it was just plain cute:
We don't have overhead lighting in our den (pounds head on table for that), so it's the darkest room in our house. I went with the same color of the walls to keep the cozy feeling we had going:
And I. love. it. (I'm going to install crown in here too, forgive my horrible cutting in...)

There is a common thought that painted ceilings make the room darker -- this is only true if the room is small, has low ceilings has little lighting. If I did a dark color on the ceiling in our master bathroom, with tall walls and tons of natural light, I can promise you it would not be darker in there. Swear. Bet you one meeellion bucks.

Another thought is that it make the room seem smaller. Even a small room like our den didn't shrink -- I swear it got bigger. When you remove the white ceiling, the eye just keeps going...it doesn't stop. I make the room seem more expanse and taller...YES, taller. When the ceiling is white, it stops your eye and shows exact height of your ceilings.

My first attempt at a painted ceiling was years ago. I wanted to give the illusion (there I go with illuuuuusions again!) of a tray ceiling in our dining room, so I put up molding, and took a color out of the light fixture for the inside of the molding:
I added a glaze to the top to make it glitter just a bit, and at first we loved it. It has stayed like this for years, but with the recent dining room redo, it just wasn't working anymore. I had the ceiling painted a couple weeks ago (I splurged and called my "guy" I use for ceilings when I'm feeling lazy) and had him leave the color on the inside, thinking it would look cool: Ummmm, it didn't. It looked like baby puke.
So in about an hour and a half, I finished it up and continued the chocolate brown:
And I adore it. (Oh yeah, I'm waiting on a special little somethin' for that empty area to the right of the table...patiently...waiting...)

The light, I have always loved...

But now I'm craving something more traditional...is that wrong? I spent a pretty penny on this light. I can't believe I'm considering this. Yikes. I have a spot where I may be able to put it, but I'm not sure what I'll do. Thoughts?

There are general guidelines "they" say to use when painting a ceiling. The first is, if your ceilings are eight feet or lower, go half and half with the color -- like half white, half wall color. Or at least take the wall color lighter a few shades. Also, if you are painting ceilings in small rooms, the general thought is to go lighter.

If your ceilings are nine foot and taller, you can go the same color as the walls. If they are VERY tall, I'm talking like 15-20 feet -- you can darker than the walls. This is for instances when you want to make such a tall space cozier and not as cavernous feeling. And it works!

My rules are...do whatever the heck you want! I almost always do the same exact color that's on the walls, no matter the size of the room or ceiling height. You can do a different color, you can go lighter, darker, whateva. I highly recommend flat paint though. Any other finish will be too shiny. If you want some shiny, use a glaze like I did to glam it up...but do it sparingly.

Painted ceilings are not for everyone. And you will be sceered, verrrry screered the first time you do it. (Heck, the fifth time you do it!) But I have yet to regret one of them in our home.

Next up...I'll show you my cheap-o hutch redo!

P.S. I believe I said "ceiling" 267 times. 268.
P.S.S. I am finishing up answering your questions on my Q and A post tonight! That was FUN!


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