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A few ways of turning a tray ceiling into a beautiful focal point

Tray ceilings have the main role of breaking up the ordinary flat ceiling line and adding variation in height in order to create an architectural look. A tray ceiling can be either inverted or recessed and can also be plain, ornate, subtle or dramatic. Depending on the atmosphere you are trying to create in the room, you can opt for one of the following methods of decorating your tray ceiling:

A white tray ceiling for the bedroom.

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If you wish to maintain a very simple, crisp, white design in the bedroom, you can opt for a minimal color palette but also for a few subtle architectural details. For example, a white tray ceiling would be both simple and interesting from an architectural point of view. It can be the chic detail your bedroom needs to become less monotonous and more stylish.

Metal tray ceiling for an industrial or classical decor.

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For a more industrial look, currogated metal sheets can be used as the main material for the ceiling. This type of ceiling would look best in tall spaces. In order to enhance the naturalism and to draw attention to the industrial side of the décor, a corroded finish would really make the ceiling stand out. In this case, the more rust the better.

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The kitchen could also benefit from an industrial décor. You can keep things simple. For example, opt for concrete floors and countertops, a copper bar top and sink, some industrial light fixtures and a rusted metal ceiling. The result will be a contemporary decor created using simple materials.

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If you prefer something more classic, you could opt for warm, rich colors and strong finishes. For example, this dining room is an intimate entertaining space featuring a very impressive metal tray ceiling with numerous beautiful details. The walls have a metallic bronze glaze and the whole room seems very warm and sophisticated.

Decorate with exposed beams.

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Opting for a ceiling with exposed wooden beams is a very common way of adding warmth and texture to a room. It’s a way of making the décor seem more casual and inviting and of giving it a rustic look. This kitchen has an overall simple décor featuring a combination of modern and country-style details.

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A series of brown beams on a simple, beige tray ceiling is also a way of redirecting the attention towards that part of the décor. It’s a simple architectural element and a nice way of creating contrasts. Moreover, the beams have a dramatic impact on the décor while also introducing texture and warmth into the room.

A pink ceiling in a pink bedroom.

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If you have a daughter she’ll probably like to have a pink bedroom, at least at one point. So make her dream come true and make some changes in the room. A vibrant shade of pink would really make the tray ceiling stand out and would completely change the atmosphere. This way you can also opt for less bold shades for the rest of the room.

Decorate with wood planks or paneling.

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If you prefer a more traditional ambiance in your home, a simple and elegant way of creating a focal point is to use wood planks or paneling for the tray ceiling. It will give the room a more warm and inviting look and would also be an elegant element for a traditional décor.

Decorate your ceiling with wallpaper.

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Wallpaper usually covers the walls and is used to create accent details in a room. However, you can also use it for your tray ceiling. It’s a more unconventional way of using wallpaper but, at the same time, it’s an interesting way of creating a focal point in the room. It’s best to opt for colors similar to those used for the walls.

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If you opt for a simple décor for the room, with neutral colors, simple textures and without bold patterns, one way of breaking the monotony is to use patterned wallpaper for the ceiling, it doesn’t have to be overly sophisticated. The colors can be the same ones used for the rest of the décor.

Elegant molding on the ceiling.

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Another great way of decorating your tray ceiling is with moldings. They come in a variety of shapes and designs and they can be used to create simple or intricate patterns. They can be sued to create a simple, elegant décor or to add some pattern to an already sophisticated interior.

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In the dining room, ceiling moldings can be the elegant detail the room needs to feel more sophisticated. In this case, for example, vertical stiles have been added along with a wide wainscot cap and the result is a simple but still eye-catching design.

Use the same color for the walls and ceiling.

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A tray ceiling doesn’t necessarily have to stand out. It can be a wonderful architectural detail even without using additional elements to make it stand out. For example, if you use the same color for the walls and for the ceiling, a continuous and coherent décor will be created. Opt for furniture in similar colors and add a few bold accent details.

A slightly different color for the tray ceiling.

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Another way to dress up your tray ceiling is by means of color. By using a slightly different color for the tray ceiling, you allow it to stand out but, at the same time, you allow it to become a part of the rest of the décor. For example, a grey tray ceiling in combination with crisp white walls would be a subtle way of redirecting the attention towards it.

Use bright tray colors for a dramatic effect.

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The opposite of a subtle, slightly different color shade would be a very bright and bold color. This option works best with tray ceilings that also have an interesting shape. It’s a way of creating a dramatic effect and should be used in combination with colors from the same palette. The same bold color can also be used for other smaller accent details for continuity.

Picture sources: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14 and 15.

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Posted in How To, Tips, and Advice on November 12, 2012

About the author

Simona Ganea
She may not be very fond of people, finding them annoying most of the time, but she still enjoys helping them from the shadows. Her attention to detail drives others crazy yet remains her most appreciated characteristic.

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