Should My Ceilings and Walls Be Painted the Same Color? Should My Ceilings and Walls Be Painted the Same Color?

Whenever you're considering a design or decorating move, you have to take into account what the current trends are, even if you're not going to be following them. Trends in design often work on us in subtle ways, and so we may not even be aware that we're following them until we suddenly start seeing “our” brilliant ideas in magazine photographs and at decorator show houses.

However, when it comes to ceilings, you want to be comfortable that whatever paint color you choose will work for at least a few years, as repainting the ceiling can be a daunting task.

So, should you paint the ceiling the same color as the walls? Or will it work better matching the trim. Or should you paint the ceiling a different color entirely?

Here are some things to consider for a more informed and conscious choice about what you want long-term.

Small Rooms

The idea follows a basic principle of design: a line between two colors draws attention to the end of the top of the wall, making the viewer more aware of the ceiling. In smaller rooms, it gives the illusion of making the ceiling appear taller, and therefore of making the small space appear larger.

So, the idea behind the trend of using one color for walls and ceiling isn't a bad one; it's a way of disguising the ceiling so it blends in more, making the room appear more spacious.

However, in a good-sized room, this effect may not be the best. Painting the walls and ceiling in one color can flatten out the look of a room, whereas using a different color can add elegance.

Older Homes

Crown molding gives older homes a vintage look with a lot of character. Often you can take a room that is boring and give it some extra detailing by adding some crown molding for not much money. Then, by painting the top edge of the wall, above the molding, the same color as the ceiling, you create an elegant, classy effect.

More often than not, ceilings in older homes are painted white, regardless of the wall color. Using any color other than white will make the ceiling feel low. If you must use something other white, make sure it is the same shade or paler than the wall color, or you'll create a cave-like feeling.

Modernist or Minimalist Style

One place where painting the ceiling the same color as the walls can work is in rooms decorated in a modernist style. Here, the monochromatic look of using the same color can work, especially if you're using a somewhat monochromatic scheme in the rest of the room's decor. It keeps a sense of continuity and contributes to an overall look.

Information provided by the Sheffield School of Interior Design.

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