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Architectural Detail Experts | A Blog by Worthington Millwork

Guidelines for Buying Ceiling Medallions

Posted by Kyle Boatwright on 6/4/18 2:20 PM

Ceiling Medallion

Do you have a room in your house that you'd like to transform in only a few hours without putting a strain on your wallet? If so, consider adding a ceiling medallion as this can give a room a feeling of elegance, while adding character to what was once an ordinary looking living area. Before rushing out to buy just any ceiling medallion, it's important to consider size, style and other factors. Here are some of the advantages of polyurethane ceiling medallions, along with several basic buying guidelines and other considerations.

What Are Ceiling Medallions?

Ceiling medallions are decorative disks that are attached to the base of a ceiling lighting fixture. These ceiling additions are generally circular and  include floral patterns, flowing curves and other decorative features.

Originally (from the early 1700s through the early 1900s), ceiling medallions were used for mainly safety reasons as they protected ceilings from candle burns. They were especially loved by the Victorians who cherished a ceiling medallions deep relief patterns and detailed ornate features. While they were once used for practical purposes, today they serve a decorative role.  

Benefits of Polyurethane Ceiling Medallions

These architectural fixtures used to be constructed only from heavy plaster, but now you can find them in other materials. Although there are wood or metal ceiling medallions, polyurethane offers the most benefits. For example, polyurethane is considerably easier to install. It's also lighter and more affordable. Another perk is that it's easy to paint.

Consider Size

The diameter of a medallion should be your main consideration. You can find ceiling medallions in various sizes. Our medallions range in diameters from 10"-15" to up to 30" or wider.

To find the correct size, you'll need to measure the length and diameter of your room and then multiply these numbers for the room's total square footage. Next, divide this number by seven. This final number is the diameter you'll need for your ceiling medallion.

Logistics

Logistics is another important consideration when buying ceiling medallions. Consider that most medallions come as either a single piece or two pieces that are cut down the center.  If you don't want to be bothered with sticking two halves together, then you're better off with just one piece. On the other hand, you may want two pieces if you intend to buy an exceptionally wide medallion.

Other Considerations and Warnings

  • Ceiling medallions aren't just for chandeliers. You can also use them with almost any type of ceiling lighting fixture, such as recessed lighting and ceiling fans.

  • Make sure a medallion goes with the style of your room. For a contemporary room, select a medallion that features clean, conservative lines. But for a more elaborate room, choose a ceiling medallion that has more details and patterns.

  • After installing your medallion, consider the color you want to paint it. While many homeowners choose colors that match their ceilings, others prefer contrasting colors. It all depends on your personal preferences.

  • The center of most medallions is cut open for accommodating the canopy of the light fixture. Therefore, you'll need to make sure that the opening is the right size for a light fixture canopy.

  • It's a good idea to have your medallion about the same size as your light fixture. However, if your room has a high ceiling that's 8' or higher, your medallion can have a larger diameter that's wider than your light fixture.

  • You may need more than one medallion for an exceptionally large room or ballroom.

  • Ensure any medallion you're considering buying doesn't clash with your existing light fixtures and crown molding. 

Don't neglect your ceiling. At Worthington Millwork, we have a wide selection of ceiling medallions that can add just the right finishing touch to your interior lighting fixtures. All our ceiling medallions are crafted from sturdy, yet lightweight polyurethane. What's more, they're pre-primed and ready to be painted and installed, which saves you time and money. To find out more about our wide range of high-end quality architectural products, please contact us.

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