What is a coffered ceiling? This is a special type of ceiling design in the form of beams, cells, recesses. The word “caisson” in this case means a polygonal depression, cell, section on the ceiling. The shape of the caissons can be very different: rectangular, square, polygonal and even round. Longitudinal and transverse beams with various ornaments, cornices, borders, stucco rosettes are widely used to create caissons.
Immediately, we note that the coffered (lacunar) ceiling has a very ancient history. Even in Ancient Greece, a similar technology for arranging ceilings was widely used. However, at that time, coffered ceilings were, rather, a necessity, because they made it possible to give strength to the canvas, to remove some of the load from the ceiling beams. Sculpting and drawings were used for beauty. Palaces were often decorated with wooden coffered ceilings during the Renaissance.
Nowadays, coffered ceilings usually do not have any practical function, they are simply a very noticeable, original decor of the premises..
Today, a coffered ceiling can be made from various materials, the choice is quite large:
- Natural wood. The most noble, but also the most expensive option. To create caissons on the ceiling, oak, ash, walnut, alder are usually used. The most budgetary option is pine;
- MDF. A good option for replacing natural wood. It is cheaper, does not dry out, and is easier to install;
- Drywall. Ceiling cells can be created from affordable drywall, which can be decorated with rosettes and cornices;
- Polyurethane. Modern, lightweight material that allows you to create durable and moisture-resistant structures on the ceiling;
- Cardboard. This refers to beams made of construction cardboard, light, inexpensive, but short-lived and fragile. It is customary to cover them after installation on the ceiling with a self-adhesive film that can imitate the structure of wood and other materials..
The advantages of coffered ceilings:
- An aristocratic appearance that will give a special charm to any room, whether it is a living room, kitchen or bedroom;
- A large selection of materials, textures, the ability to paint in various colors, many combinations, for example, using wallpaper, stretched canvas, plaster, plaster or polyurethane rosettes, all kinds of fillets inside the caissons;
- The design of the coffered ceiling allows you to hide any communications;
- The coffered ceiling allows you to hide all surface irregularities;
- Ceiling section cells can improve room acoustics by scattering and absorbing sound waves;
- Additional heat and sound insulation of the ceiling appears;
- There are very wide opportunities for experimenting with lighting, which can be very different, including hidden light sources;
- The service life, of course, will depend on the material for creating the ceiling, but in general it is quite long.
Disadvantages of coffered ceilings:
- The suspension system of this design “eats” the ceiling height. Making caissons with a ceiling height of less than 2.5 m is a risky task, the effect may not turn out at all as you expected. And it is best to use caissons on ceilings with a height of three meters, so they will look especially luxurious;
- Installation of a coffered ceiling is quite complicated and requires careful calculations;
- If the sections are made of plasterboard, then the ceiling cannot be washed or cleaned, you only have to repaint. In general, we must not forget that drywall is a rather fragile material. This disadvantage also applies to cardboard ceilings;
- Quite a high price in comparison with the usual painting of the ceiling or pasting it with wallpaper;
- It is more difficult to care for the cells of the coffered ceiling, in the irregularities of the beams, on the stucco, dust can accumulate.
Installation of a coffered ceiling always begins with drawing up a sketch, a detailed plan. First, measurements are taken of the room, the sizes of the caissons are selected, which, recall, can be of very different shapes, the same and not. For large rooms, the designers advise to make the caissons smaller, but for relatively close ones – larger or of different sizes.
The technology for arranging a coffered ceiling will depend on the material you choose. For clarity, we will show several video instructions.
Now there is an opportunity to purchase ready-made kits for coffered ceilings, which include such details as: long and short rail-guides, cornice-curbs, additional elements and coffered nodes.