exposed ceiling beams

The exposed ceiling beam is in these days, lending an industrial look to otherwise modern rooms. In fact, the fad has grown so popular that many people are looking for ways to add exposed beams to their homes as well. Some people want to know if they have to buy beams to achieve this look, or if they can simply remove their existing ceiling to expose the beams that are already there. Here's what you need to know before you take on this project.

 

Joists vs Beams

 

The first thing you need to know is that the joists used in the construction of your house are not the same as the exposed beams you see in popular restaurants and home renovation magazines. First of all, those joists were never meant to be exposed, so they are often unfinished and unsightly. Instead of giving you a clean industrial look, they will probably just look ragged and in need of finishing. Secondly, it would take forever to clean up your wiring and plumbing to make it look good in your newly exposed space because these things were probably routed in the quickest fashion during the building of your house, not the most aesthetic. By contrast, the exposed beams you see in pictures are likely finished and installed over hidden joists and supports. This allows you to enjoy the look of a finished beam that has been painted and coated for longevity without having to look at the real guts of the building. Even those open ceilings that do have plumbing and wiring visible often use painted pipes and conduit to conceal much of the mess. These beams are made to be artfully added to any space and they are lightweight so they can be easily installed and removed if necessary. They also tend to be larger and made with a variety of wood grain looks to give you an authentic look and texture so you won't be stuck with the dull, unfinished look of your interior joists.

 

Spacing

 

Another problem with exposing your existing joists is that they are spaced very close together and they only go in one direction. If you want to create a decorative look to your ceiling, you need to use ceiling beams sparingly and decide which direction you want your beams to run so that they can add to the look of the room, rather than making it look cluttered. Even large rooms typically only have a handful of beams spread across the span of the ceiling.

 

 

If you're interested in creating an exposed beam look in your home, visit Volterra online today. We sell finished faux wood beams in a range of colors and sizes to fit any installation. These products are made to be a decorative enhancement to your home that easily fits onto your existing ceiling without a hassle.