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How To Create the Illusion of High Ceilings

You don’t really look at the ceiling when you enter a room. However, whether you notice it or not, a ceiling does impact the way that you perceive a room. High ceilings make a room feel open and spacious while a low ceiling can either create a cozy feel or a closed in feel.

Unfortunately, many homes weren’t blessed with high ceilings. So, l thought I would share with you some easy and quick tips on how to create the illusion of high ceilings.

6 Tricks to Make Your Ceiling Look Higher

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1. Floor-to-ceiling curtains

Making your ceilings appear higher than they actually are is not just a single step. It’s a combination of optical tricks that create the illusion of height. And curtains are a huge step towards accomplishing this. Purchase curtains that are a bit longer than your windows require, and then hang them a few inches above your window.  Hang window treatments as high as possible. Floor-to-ceiling curtains elongate a room.

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2. Low-profile furniture

In addition to drawing the eye upward, one of the easiest ways to make your ceilings appear higher is to source lower furniture pieces. Choose uncomplicated pieces with vertical, tailored lines. Lower profile furniture with fewer horizontal elements (arm rests, for example) can help emphasize the distance between the furniture and the ceiling.

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3.  Avoid overhead fans

Skip fans and ceiling or overhead lights because they draw attention to the ceiling.  Chandeliers are a great way to tie a room together, but if hung too low, a chandelier can give your room a cramped, claustrophobic feeling. If you have an existing chandelier, or if you’re planning to install one, hang your chandelier a few inches higher than standard practice. Like your curtains, a higher chandelier will naturally draw the eye upward.

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4. Use brighter lighter wall color

If you think your space is a bit cramped, then consider changing up your color scheme. Darker colors—specifically taupes and beiges—can make space feel claustrophobic. Consider a brighter color—light gray (check out Moonshine, Grey Owl, French Canvas by Benjamin Moore or Decorator’s Grey by CIL). By using one color all throughout the house, you will immediately feel the difference. It gives your space an airier, loftier vibe.

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5. Create high corners

This is yet another clever trick to make a low ceiling look higher. Place tall items such as apartment plants and floor lamps in the corners of the room. In this way, the eye will be attracted to this area and construe the entire ceiling as a high one. It gives better visual interest and photographs really well.

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6. De-clutter The Room

When your room is cluttered and disorganized, it makes it look chaotic, cramped, and claustrophobic. By having a clean and organized room, it not only makes your whole space feel bright and airy, but it adds a huge amount of space. If you need extra storage, use built-in shelving, floor-to-ceiling shelving, or nice wicker baskets.

All these simple tricks do not involve expensive investments – in most of the cases, they involve rearranging furniture or decorations which you already own. In some situations, you may reconsider certain items, but it is a worthwhile effort if you manage to make your ceiling look higher and enjoy a more welcoming home.


is a Canadian Certified Staging Professional. His professional affiliations include the Real Estate Staging Association (RESA) and the CSP. He is the recipient of numerous home staging awards and was picked as RESA’s Top Professional Stager of Canada for 2016. He has worked with hundreds of Real Estate Brokers, Investors, Real Estate Agents, and has helped homeowners showcase their homes at its best when it is time to sell.

As President and Principal Stager of REDESIGN4MORE, Red provides home staging and interior redecorating services for both small and large-scale residential projects throughout Toronto and the GTA. Click here to learn more about Red and REDESIGN4MORE.