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Rustic Ceilings

   

 

  by Jennifer Jones

rustic log ceiling in dining room

Although taken for granted and often overlooked, ceilings provide plenty of charm to a room as well as set the tone for a particular type of atmosphere. They add interest to boring spaces and can alter the entire mood of the room. Adding a ceiling treatment can bring the height down of high vaulted spaces and make them feel cozier. A plain white plaster ceiling can be very uninteresting, but can provide an inspiring start for sprucing up the area. For homeowners who love the outdoors, they should consider the stunning effects of a rustic ceiling treatment. Applying wood to the ceiling will give the perfect style of intimacy for a soothing setting.

 

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Rustically designed homes have definite features and finishes that give them their natural quality. Most mountain houses enjoy steep rooflines that shed the snow on the outside as well as provide an open, vaulted interior. Many have a dramatic two-story appearance and some ceilings can be even higher. Lodges and cabins also enjoy wood applied to the ceiling for a rural atmosphere. There are several types of wood ceilings from wood planks to beamed trusses. Wood planks and vertical wood stripping are most popular in tongue and groove form, since they fit smoothly together for easy installation. For a more romantic atmosphere, trusses can be installed to create that mountain-esque and medieval appearance. Wooden beamed trusses are also most efficient for easier lighting options, as opposed to installing cans in the ceilings with wood planking.

rustic beamed dining room

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The wood materials used for rustic ceilings can be color-treated, remain their natural color, or stained to the shade that best fits the decor of the room. Timbers come in a variety of different woods, including Douglas fir, cherry, maple, chestnut, ash, pine, oak and many more. If you decided on dark wood, be careful not to make the space appear too small. Painting the walls a lighter color will provide a good balance and contrast to the darker wood appearance.

There are a few options when choosing the perfect rustic appeal for your ceiling. Reclaimed or recycled wood is a popular choice for many homeowners and is often utilized in green building construction. The reuse of salvaged wood definitely portrays the rustic mood and is a genuine part of our American Heritage. As buildings age, there is sometimes no other choice but to tear them down. Fortunately, the lumber can be recycled into other projects such as furniture, wood paneling and beamed trusses. This practice of reclaiming wood from older buildings is useful in many ways, including incorporating a piece of history into your home. It has exquisite architectural quality that is like no other.

Reclaimed, barn wood is used most often by builders because of its low moisture content. This provides stability and reduces the inclination of shrinkage and separation that often occurs when building with lumber. Reclaimed wood is also extremely dense and has high structural value. Additionally, the harvesting of valuable forests and habitats is avoided when recycling wood and therefore more environmentally friendly.

beamed rustic ceiling in great room

 

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Antique wood is a bit different from recycled and reclaimed wood. The natural aging process of drying and oxidation creates a gorgeous veneer that is difficult to recreate on fresh lumber. This type of wood is usually not exposed to the elements, like barn wood, so it generally retains most of its natural color. If it has been exposed to nature, the antique wood develops a grey topcoat with the original color below the surface.

A completely different way of achieving a rustic wood ceiling is with the incorporation of faux wood beams. Faux beams are created from a rigid material called polyurethane. It is maintenance-free, lightweight and can replicate the texture of actual wood. A mold is made from a real wood beam and the polyurethane is poured into it to create an exact replica of natural wood. These beams can be ordered in standard sizes, pre-assembled or sold in parts as well as are easily customized and cut to size. They provide the appearance of solid wood beams, while weighing much less them solid trusses. This puts less stress on modern homes and structures that cannot bear the heavier load. Additionally, faux beams can be installed over existing wood, steel and laminate surfaces. Since these false beams are hollow, they are perfect for hiding unsightly plumbing, wiring and other ceiling conduits. After installed, they appear no different than natural wood trusses for that natural rustic appeal.

rustic ceiling and wall details inside home

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It seems that every homeowner gives much attention to the floors and walls,

but often forgets the customization opportunities of the ceiling. It is the perfect space to create a work of art and display rustic appeal to an otherwise plain area. Whether you decide on fresh lumber, reclaimed wood or faux beams, designing the ceiling with a rustic design will create an amazing classic appeal to your home.

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