I cannot stray far from the topic of the ceiling without focussing on an ornamental addition to grace the ceiling. The adornment of the ceiling medallion. Medallions add dimension, character, definition and architectural interest to an overlooked area. There are endless possibilities in decorative style to suit personal taste and style while truly transforming spaces.
Ceiling medallions have been traced historically to the early Middle Eastern times and were copied in later years throughout Europe. Medallions were often highly ornate and detailed. It is said that artists would spend months, even years, hand painting these works of art of earlier times. The French and Italian relied heavily on these medallions and used them to a point in which the medallions were the focal point of an entire room. Medallions were made of heavy materials such as iron, plaster and marble. Today, medallions are available in more lightweight materials, such as wood, polyurethane (and of course, plaster) and are stylistic of the French and Italian motifs. They have stood the test of time and will continue to grace beautiful interiors. Timeless and classic.
Ceiling medallions are typically a circular decorative panel, but can also be oval or square in shape. They range in size from 6″ to 74″ and larger in diameter. Size matters, but I believe it is a personal choice of how you deem it to be, that is, with taste. However, rules of interior design do follow the principle that the medallion should be the same size as the light fixture. A ceiling medallion that is too small will certainly appear ‘lost’ and at the same time, a medallion that is too large will overwhelm the room and appear ‘heavy’. The goal should always be to enhance a space, not overwhelm it.
Medallions are commonly painted white. White truly is always right. However, paint is also another great transforming feature with these flexible works of ceiling art. Consider painting a medallion a faux gold gilt, or painting it the same color as the trim for a unified look. Continuity without competition with existing architectural trim in a room. Painted medallions provide unlimited possibilities in terms of coordinating with decorative elements in a space. Unified drama. However, I simply adore the thrilling juxtaposition of a contrasting medallion and light fixture. Flourish of a medallion with modernity in a light fixture. Old with the new. It can absolutely work in any space. A prominent statement. Contrasting an interior style that lends itself to a modern simplicity with an unexpected medallion with ‘ruffles and flourish’ is a WOW. A statement of unexpected proportions.
So, consider the icing. Whether you choose a simple or ornate medallion, there is a style for any space. It is personal choice. A statement of style. Choose to enrich your interiors with this simple element to create a sophisticated, indeed, timeless appeal. Bring life and interest to your ceiling. Instant glamour. Instant elegance.
And what of using the medallions as art ON the wall? Decorative, fresh and unexpected. Architectural details as art. Who would have thought? I love it!
PS: Remember, the ceiling is the 5th wall…paint the ceiling first, then add the icing!