House owners have quite varied tastes when it comes to decoration. Some opt for muted and subtle designs while others prefer a bold and challenging look. So when comes to looking at ceiling panel designs the same rules apply.
Some people choose to make a feature of their ceiling whereas others will just want a plain look that doesn’t jump out at you. There is plenty of choice on the market so there should be something to suit your needs – whichever route you take.
All panelling products will offer a range of benefits over traditional ceiling coverings:
- easy to install – they cut easily and can be stuck or stapled in place
- no preparation required – they can go up over a variety of substrates
- zero maintenance – nothing to paint, varnish, scrub or renew
- 100% waterproof – totally unaffected by condensation, steam or water spray
Click here to find out more about this remarkable ceiling covering and the fantastic benefits of this product.
What Ceiling Panel Designs Are Available?
There are many different ceiling panel designs available. In fact, you can use any design of panel for your ceiling including those that are primarily intended for use on walls.
Some of the larger, shower panels are a bit heavy for this purpose but there is nothing to stop you from trying!
You will need to make one basic decision that will determine which route you go down with regard to design. Do you want a plain, flat, white ceiling or do you want some form of pattern or relief?
Once you have decided this you can start to narrow your choices down. So what are the choices? Let’s look at the options in a bit more detail.
Flush-Fitting White Panels
These are a popular choice for use on the ceiling.
Their main advantage is that they do not catch the eye. They are designed to cover the ceiling and not a lot else. The panels do not draw attention to themselves and just provide a long-lasting surface that will never require any work doing to it.
There are gloss finish panels as well as matt finish ones. The matt panels are the closest in appearance to a painted plaster ceiling. So if you want the least conspicuous appearance these are the ones for you.
Gloss panels are marginally easier to wipe over but both are really easy to live with.
Flush panels work well with coving trims because the lack of grooves means there are no gaps when they are slotted into place.
With plank-effect panels, the front surfaces do not quite meet. They form a groove that resembles the old T&G timber panels.
There is still and tongue and grooved joint behind the visible join and they are still 100% waterproof. This is simply a design feature. Have a look at our article on joint types to see how they slot together.
The choice of design includes gloss white, matt white and woodgrain.
Woodgrain effects are extremely popular for people who want a little bit of a pattern on the ceiling but nothing too eye-catching.
Here are some examples of plank effect panels:
Chrome Strip Panels
Chrome strip panels are the perfect choice for those people who are looking to make a feature of their ceiling.
Some ceiling panel designs are subtle and unobtrusive whereas these ones are designed to catch the eye from the outset. There are a few different types and approaches to the construction of chrome strip panels but they all result in the same effect.
With some makes, the chrome strip is a separate item that is used in conjunction with a standard white panel. The strip can result in a flush finish, a slightly raised surface or a slightly recessed look.
The other approach is to mould the chrome strip into the panel. This makes installation a bit easier because the strips can be fiddly to work with, especially when working overhead on a ceiling.
We have more information on panels with chrome strips here.
Other Ceiling Design Options
There are a few other ways in which ceiling panels can be deployed to create some interesting design effects.
One option is to create a “floating” ceiling where the panels do not actually meet the walls. It is then possible to install lighting above the ceiling panels letting light flood out through the gap.
This technique requires the level of the ceiling to be dropped to accommodate the lighting so this might not be an option if you have very low ceilings. But in taller rooms, it can provide a very dramatic look that is quite unique.
Many of the lighting packages come with the option to vary colours and intensity so it is possible o vary the look depending on the mood you are trying to create.
Make sure you choose the correct rating for your bathroom – there are different rules for different zones.
Not all ceilings are flat. Some have awkward angles and some have curves. This example shows a basement in a hotel where the ceiling was completely curved. They had some major issues with flaking paint so wanted a permanent solution. It is possible to cut the back of ceiling panels to enable them to flex and follow a curve. That is what was done here. This is also an example of panels being used outside the bathroom. There are many other ceiling panel applications – see this page for more information.
You could use this technique to add some curves to your own ceiling for visual interest. The ceiling would need to be quite high for this to work and you would need to create your own framework. But it shows just what is possible with these flexible and adaptable panels.
Which Ceiling Panel Designs Work Best?
There is no right and wrong answer here. It depends if you either want to make a feature of the ceiling or fade into the background.
If you are just looking for a modern alternative to a plastered ceiling then plain white panels fit the bill exactly. There are several plain white ceiling panels on the market in both matt finish and high gloss. Longer-length panels are also available for larger ceilings.
If you would like something slightly more eye-catching you can add chrome strips to make a feature of your ceiling Wood-effect panels provide a more traditional look or for something completely different you could try fitting marble panels.
The choice is down to you. But one this certain, you will not regret fitting ceiling panels.