How to Build a Coffered Ceiling

During our recent dining room renovation, one of the features we added to the room was a coffered ceiling. A coffered ceiling adds dimension and texture to a space and is a wonderful addition for high ceilings. A coffered ceiling is achieved by installing wood or fiberboard planks to create a grid pattern. Molding or other decorative elements can also be added to the grid, depending on the look you are trying to achieve. Coffered ceilings are also commonly referred to as sunken ceilings.

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For our coffered ceiling we did not add any crown molding or additional accents to the grid. We want the style to be modern farmhouse and transitional, giving the appearance of beams on the ceiling. Adding crown molding gives the space a more traditional look.

As I mentioned above, we redesigned the entire room. In this redesign, we removed the elaborate crown molding from the room. You can read about the complete dining room transformation (HERE). 

IMG_5442*This post contains affiliate links for your convenience*

After removing the crown molding and prepping the ceiling well, we begin designing the grid. The space we are working with is a tray ceiling in the shape of an octagon.

IMG_5470Using a tool to create a chalk line (HERE) is the easier way we have found to do projects such as this coffered ceiling.

Notice multiple chalk lines? That’s one of the benefits of using this tool, it allows you to visualize where the boards will be placed. On the first try, I decided the beams weren’t wide enough apart, so we created a wider space for the beams using the chalk line. We also adjusted the spacing of the boxes, taking into account the chandelier in the middle and the speakers on either side. We began with creating 9 similar sized spaces, but decided the space would look better with larger boxes in the middle row, (with the chandelier and speakers) and smaller spaces at the corners.

We had these challenges because we are working in an octagonal space, if the room was square, I believe the spacing would have been easier to achieve.

IMG_5457We attached 1″ x 6″ common boards to the ceiling. These boards will be used to attached our wood panels to, they are 1″ thick and 6″ wide.

IMG_5458IMG_5461Using WindsorOne 8″ boards, we start nailing the boards to the common pieces of wood (HERE). The Bostitch is our nail gun of choice.

IMG_5460The chalk line is working well and guiding us to where the boards should be placed, as long as we remember which line we are using 🙂

IMG_5472IMG_5459IMG_5471 The beams are 6″ wide and 8″ high.

IMG_5473We nail in the last of the bottom boards to the side pieces.

IMG_5474Turned out pretty well!

Now the caulking begins (HERE), it goes quickly using a caulk gun (HERE).

IMG_5479We painted the ceiling using a semi-gloss paint and it looks beautiful!

IMG_5624fullsizeoutput_7175fullsizeoutput_7176fullsizeoutput_7177img_5583Thanks for stopping by, I hope I inspired you to take on a new home project. Remember to follow along on Instagram and see you next time!

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