Chloe Warner - Tall Skinny BookshelvesCover Photo by Chloe Warner

Reality is usually better than illusion. But when reality is not quite up to snuff, a little illusion can be useful. This is certainly the case with Interior Design, which deals with the psychology of home.

We tend to benefit with certain features in our environment. The illusion of those features is often better than nothing, and often in fact good enough for our well-being.

A good case in point is plants. Many of us probably have a bias for real plants; but where it is not possible to have them, fake plants still provide us some of the psychological benefits.
Another example, and today’s focus, is ceiling height.

Ceiling height gives us a visceral feeling of grandeur and freedom. It is vital to giving us a sense of space and opens up even the smallest of room.

So what to do when your ceiling height falls a little short?

Here are few ideas:

  1. Use tall, skinny bookshelves
  2. Bring kitchen cabinets all the way up to the ceiling
  3. Use full-height doors and taller passageways
  4. Hang curtains directly from the ceiling
  5. Bring the finish on the face of a fireplace all the way up
  6. Painting walls, baseboards and ceilings the same color
  7. Use floor to ceiling mirrors
  8. Orient wall sconces vertically
  9. Keep chandeliers a little higher; stick to light, slim designs that you can see through and around
  10. Opt of low-profile furniture
  11. Include transoms above doors and windows
  12. Design your feature wall vertically
  13. Avoid clutter, which can also close the room in

Not sure what a transom is (or a sconce, for that matter)? See the slideshow below, where you can also see examples of each idea.


So? Have lower ceilings and tried any of these ideas? Let me know!

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