Decorative Ceiling Molding Ideas

Chandlier image by NICS Escapee from

Decorative ceiling moulding, also known as crown moulding, fills the corner between the wall and the ceiling. Usually made of wood or plastic, ceiling moulding can add an artistic, architectural and finished accent to any room. For the best results, always balance the crown moulding with the moulding between the floor and wall, known as base moulding. An elaborate crown moulding without, or with a simple, base moulding will make a room feel top-heavy.

Modern Molding

Decorative ceiling mouldings may be popular accents in classic designs, but they also work for modern styles. The key to modern-looking mouldings is to choose a design with sharp lines, bold colours and a crisp style.

A two-inch wide, ivory-checkered trim with each square outlined in black covers the wall and ends one inch below the ceiling to create the basic moulding design. An ivory panel juts out from the upper trim at a slight angle and ends at the ceiling, three inches from the wall. A thin black line edges the end of the panel to create a break between the moulding and ceiling. Pair the ceiling moulding with cream walls and a thick, checkered base moulding for visual balance.

Ornate Molding

Large and/or tall rooms can pull off heavy and ornate ceiling mouldings for an elegant style. The large concave ceiling moulding creates an inward curve between the wall and ceiling. The bottom of the mahogany moulding consists of a thin line of trim topped with a thin line of carved leaves. The top of the moulding consists of the same design, except the carving is below the trim. The middle concave part of the moulding consists of a carved rose pattern for a floral accent.

Pair the ornate ceiling moulding with a thick base moulding with matching trim and leaf carvings, but a plain section in the middle. The plain base moulding complements the ceiling moulding without overwhelming the room. You can also use the basic leaf and trim design for matching door and window frames in the room.

Rope Molding

Rope ceiling mouldings look like a thick piece of painted rope stuffed into the corner between the wall and ceiling. The moulding has a bulging silhouette the works best in large rooms. Taupe-coloured, rope-carved, half-inch wide moulding trims the top and bottom of the off-white, rope-carved, two-inch wide ceiling moulding to create texture and contrast in the room. Base moulding with the taupe piece against the floor and white moulding only on top provides a finished look.

Simple Molding

Small and/or short rooms look best with simple ceiling mouldings. Large mouldings will make the room seem smaller and/or shorter. The simple moulding consists of a one-inch wide piece of rectangular white wood topped by a two-inch wide piece of rectangular white wood. The small rectangle sits flush against the ceiling and wall with the tiny rectangle positioned below. Matching base moulding with the tiny rectangle positioned above the small rectangle provides visual balance.

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