While high ceilings are architecturally appealing, they present challenges for installing light fixtures, so consider these vaulted ceiling lighting options. Whether your decor style is traditional or modern, there are several ways to light your space and accentuate the ceiling planes.
Recessed Can Fixtures
Recessed fixtures are a popular choice because they allow the ceiling surface to remain relatively uncluttered, providing a clean and modern aesthetic. When installing recessed fixtures in sloped ceilings, be sure to choose an adjustable version so you can aim the light source downward or any other direction you desire. Be sure that there is enough space above the ceiling surface to install recessed fixtures.
Hang decorative pendant fixtures to illuminate your space. These versatile fixtures can hang several feet from the peak of your vaulted ceiling, or you can position them as you prefer by using a swag. Pendants are available in a variety of colors and materials from the classic crystal chandelier look, simple fabric wrapped drums, modern metal cylinders to colorful blown glass shapes.
Commonly used in museums and retail spaces, track lights offer versatility for a vaulted ceiling. The track can be mounted along the sloped surface of the wall and adjustable track heads allow you to aim the light at different parts of the room to evenly illuminate. You may also aim the track heads at paintings on the wall or other decorative focal points around the room.
An even more flexible lighting option for vaulted ceilings is cable lighting. A cable can be strung between the ceiling or wall surfaces and track heads hang along this wire. You can purchase a pre-packaged cable lighting kit that has almost all of the elements you need to install this system yourself. Cable lighting looks very modern and can be moved and reconfigured to fit challenging vaulted ceiling shapes.
Similar to track and cable systems, monorail lighting functions on the principle of flexible cable or rods that support pendant or other types of light fixtures. Rods can be bent into curves and angles, resulting in a unique light fixture that looks like an art piece. You can also purchase pre-packaged monorail lighting kits and install this system at any point along the sloped walls and angles of your vaulted ceiling, or suspend it from the middle to hang like a chandelier.
Natural lighting is the most environmentally friendly option. If possible, consider cutting skylights into the angles of your vaulted ceiling. You will need to consult with a contractor to ensure your roof is structurally stable in order to accommodate such a cutout, and that no other building systems such as electrical wiring or ducts would interfere with the installation. This isn't a cheap lighting option and you will need alternate lighting sources for the evening, such as lamps, but skylights can accentuate the shape of your ceiling and allow desirable natural light to enter the space.