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How to Light a Vaulted Ceiling

How to Light a Vaulted Ceiling

Posted by Danielle Sherrer on Apr 25th 2023

Vaulted ceilings are a beautiful architectural feature to buildings and homes. They make a room feel much more spacious and larger. But with that additional space, it can be challenging to figure out what lighting should be used. It's important to know the size of the room and what type of lighting you want to achieve to determine the right type of lighting fixture and the best way to mount it. Generally, you'll want to choose several light fixtures like track lighting or chandeliers that will both fill the room with light and create an interesting visual effect. It's also important to consider the type of bulbs used, as some may be too bright or too dim for the space.

Once you've chosen the right lighting fixtures, you may need to install them in a way that takes advantage of the space you have. It is also important to consider the type of bulbs to use. If you're aiming for a bright, ambient light, you'll want to choose bulbs with a higher wattage. On the other hand, if you're looking for a softer, more subdued light, you'll want to choose bulbs with a lower wattage. Additionally, you'll want to make sure the bulbs you choose are dimmable and in the color temperature to help fit the mood of the room.

Start with recessed lighting.

Installing recessed lighting in a vaulted ceiling can be an excellent way to provide a room with both bright, even light and a unique visual effect. The versatility of recessed lighting makes them ideal for use in vaulted ceilings, as they can be easily adjusted to either spread the light across the whole ceiling or concentrate it around the wall border. When selecting fixtures for a vaulted ceiling, it is important to choose ones with housings that are specially designed for this purpose, as they will be more durable and better able to provide the desired lighting effect. Additionally, consider the overall layout of the room and how the light from the recessed fixtures should be spread to create the desired visual effect. For example, you may choose to spread the lights evenly across the ceiling or concentrate them primarily around the wall border. When used in combination with other lighting sources, such as pendant lights, recessed lights can provide a beautiful, layered look to a vaulted space.

Shop Recessed Lighting on LightUp and check out our blog post on laying out recessed lights.

Install pendant lighting, chandeliers, or other hanging light fixtures and layout recessed lighting or can lights effectively to fill the extra space and add style.

Vaulted ceilings are a beautiful and unique feature that can add height and drama to a room. Lighting a vaulted ceiling can be tricky, as the extra space can leave the room feeling dark and uninviting. Fortunately, there are a few tricks you can use to light up the room and brighten up the space. Pendant lights are an effective way to fill the extra space in a room with vaulted ceilings and jazz up the room's style.

There are other options than just pendant lights. Ceiling fans can be used for a more practical application. A chandelier can also be used in a room with vaulted ceilings in order to add a more dramatic feel to the room.

For more challenging architecture, try something linear like track lighting.

If you have a more challenging architecture, linear lighting is a great way to bring out the beauty and character of the space. Linear lighting is composed of long strips of light that can be used in a variety of ways to create different effects. If the ceiling has rafters or a more warehouse feel to it, track lighting is also a great option. Track lights are very versatile and can make a taller ceiling look more artistic.

Want to add more natural light to brighten the room? The answer is not always more lighting.

Skylights are awesome for high and sloped ceilings because they let in more sunlight. Skylights are a cool way to add more natural light into a living room or other areas of the home without relying on adding a variety of light fixtures like track lighting, pendant lights, or chandeliers. When skylights are installed in a part of the home that will bring in enough light during the day, they become a clever technique used to help save energy from lights that would need to be installed within a particular area of a home.

What is the difference between a cathedral ceiling and a vaulted ceiling?

Cathedral ceilings and vaulted ceilings are often used interchangeably because they both are types of sloped ceilings that create an open, airy feel in a room. But there is a distinct difference between the two. Cathedral ceilings are characterized by a steeply pitched roof, while vaulted ceilings feature a more gradual, curved roofline. Both types of ceilings have the benefit of creating a larger, more open space, but they require different techniques when it comes to lighting.

Cathedral ceilings often have windows and skylights that allow for natural light to fill the room, making them a popular option for living and dining rooms. Vaulted ceilings, on the other hand, are usually found in bedrooms as they provide a more cozy, intimate atmosphere. 

Both cathedral and vaulted ceilings can be decorated with a variety of styles, including traditional, modern, and rustic. However, cathedral ceilings are often better suited to grand, ornate decorations, while vaulted ceilings are more suitable for simpler, minimalist styles.

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