Building a new home, extending an existing property or converting a loft can all be ideal opportunities to do something a little different with your ceilings. We’re accustom to flat ceilings in our homes, but with some forward planning, vaulted ceilings can add interest and volume to any interior.

What’s more, vaulted ceilings can add wow factor to double and single-storey spaces alike. And, from curved to angular shapes, vaulted ceilings can also suit both contemporary and traditional homes. Here, we explore some of the clever ways you can employ this architectural feature in your home.

1. Timber-Clad Vaulted Ceilings

rounded vaulted ceiling made with whitewashed timber in a Scottish longhouse

The curved ceiling in this traditional-style new build features whitewashed timber cladding, which gives a cosy Scandinavian feel to the interiors

Make a focal point of your vaulted ceilings by using cladding. Timber is often the material of choice here, adding texture, character and warmth to lofty spaces.

2. Maximise Glazing to Dramatic Effect

glazed gable end of a bathroom with a vaulted ceiling

 A frosted window film allows this master en suite to enjoy plenty of natural light without compromising privacy. This project was designed by WG+P

Glazed gable ends can be a great way of bringing natural light into rooms with vaulted ceilings.

3. Partially Vaulted Ceilings

vaulted sloping ceiling with rooflights

In this SIPs and oak frame self build project, designed by Carpenter Oak, the first floor galleried landing sits beneath a sloping ceiling; rooflights bring light flooding down to the ground floor below

Where top floor accommodation can’t be left open to a fully vaulted ceiling due to restrictions on space, partial vaulting can look equally effective and add visual interest.

This idea is also a useful way of adding height in one and half storey homes.

4. Make the Most of Vaulted Ceilings with a Mezzanine Level

double-height-living-room

The mezzanine study, in this striking chapel conversion, ensures the full height of the original building can be enjoyed when entering the building

Mezzanines are a great way of gaining additional floorspace under a vaulted ceiling — and creating both single and double-height zones in one area. Mezzanines can be put to good use as studies, play rooms or TV snugs.

5. Vaulted Ceiling Can Provide Opportunity to Introduce Light from Above

open-plan-living-room-in-an-accessible-bunaglow

In this renovated bungalow, a partially vaulted ceiling has provide scope to introduce clerestory window — bringing light flooding into this space

Vaulted ceilings can provide an ideal means of introducing natural light from above. Installing rooflights or structural glazing in a vaulted ceiling are two ways of achieving this.

6. A Clever Loft Conversion

vaulted ceiling of loft conversion living space

Scheme designed by POW Architects

Creating extra space within a home is often a top priority for many homeowners, which is where vaulted ceilings can prove beneficial.

This partially vaulted ceiling creates the illusion of space in the living room, while providing scope for a further bedroom to the other side.

7. Curved Vaulted Ceilings Can Add Drama

curved ceiling glulam self build dining area

This self build project features a wow-factor grand dining hall space thanks to the double-height curved ceilings

Not all vaulted ceiling are angular. In fact, curved ceilings (often created with the aid of curved glulam beams) can add wow factor to an interior.

8. Rafters and Trusses Lend Character

exposed rafters and trusses in a bedroom with a vaulted ceiling

In this self build, ‘faux’ rafters have been introduced to lend character to this traditional new home

Exposing elements of the roof structure, including the trusses and/or rafters, can add character to a home. This works particularly well beneath lofty double-height vaulted ceilings, but can also work beneath in single-height rooms, as this example goes to show.

9. Exposed Building Materials Can Add Interest

exposed steel ties on vaulted bedroom ceiling

The exposed glulam beam and steel ties add industrial flair to this two-storey extension and remodel scheme

It’s not just the rafters that can be exposed: steel ties can look extremely effective, and give contemporary and traditional interiors alike an industrial-style edge.

10. Vaulted Ceilings Can Create Height for a Feature Fireplace

Welsh Oak Frame vaulted ceiling living room

This oak frame home from Welsh Oak Frame features an impressive stone fireplace complete with woodburning stove beneath a vaulted ceiling

A great design idea for making the most of high vaulted ceilings is the inclusion of a feature fireplace.

11. ‘Pods’ Can Add Privacy in Large Vaulted Spaces

vaulted ceiling of an open plan bedroom and en suite

A dividing wall in this Oakwrights barn-style self build provides privacy between the en suite and bedroom

Large spaces with tall vaulted ceilings are great, but what if you want to create more intimate, cosy areas beneath?

Pods and/or dividing walls can help zone areas, without fear of losing the beautiful vaulted ceiling above.

12. Vaulted Ceiling Can be Used to Create Galleried Landings

galleried landing with a vaulted ceiling

The natural plaster finish, from Clayworks, lends texture to this vaulted ceiling

A galleried landing beneath a double-height vaulted ceiling can add real wow factor upon entering a home.

13. Vaulted Ceiling Can Help Zone Open Plan Spaces

kitchen-in-traditional-style-self-build-with-vaulted-ceiling

This stunning Scottish self build mixes contemporary finishes and large areas of glazing, with reclaimed materials

Designing in different height and shaped ceilings can help zone open plan spaces. In this spacious kitchen diner, a vaulted ceiling helps delineate the kitchen from the dining area.

14. Vaulted Ceilings Can Add Head Height

converted chapel bedroom with vaulted ceiling

This guest bedroom in a chapel conversion, designed by Evolution Design, maximises on available space thanks to built-in storage. The vaulted ceiling adds height to the small bedroom, helping it to feel larger

Think vaulted ceilings are for big, lofty rooms only? Think again — vaulted ceilings can be a useful feature for smaller rooms, or those with limited head height.

15. The Bridge Landing

gangway in double height ceiling space of a converted barn

This award-winning barn conversion project was designed by Hudson Architects provides circulation space to the first floor accommodation, without distracting from the impressive original trusses

Barn conversions can often boast voluminous vaulted ceilings, but providing access to rooms above can prove troublesome. Designing in a ‘bridge’ landing can prove the perfect solution for linking the first floor accommodation within a dramatic vaulted space.

16. Vaulted Ceiling Can Add Drama to Bathrooms

bathroom-under-vaulted-ceiling

This colonial-style bathroom in this self build takes its cure from the impressive exposed frame

Vaulted ceiling should not simply be the reserve of your main living spaces. They can work well in bathrooms — with areas which need less height head (i.e. above the bath) being accommodated beneath the eaves.

17. Built-in Storage Works Well Beneath Vaulted Spaces

This spacious bedroom features in a home built by a young couple, for just £80K! Built-in wardrobes maximises space beneath this sloping ceiling

One of the challenges associated with vaulted ceiling is furniture and storage — off-the-shelf furniture does not always suit such spaces. Built-in, bespoke storage solutions will help you maximise potential in rooms with vaulted ceilings, however.

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