Guide to Coved Ceilings


A coved ceiling is a ceiling design that has curved edges instead of sharp angles between the ceiling and walls which are commonly found in most homes. They create a dome-like design which is reminiscent of the arched ceiling style of Middle Eastern architecture.

Coved ceilings can feature a very rounded curve or a relatively shallow one, depending on the design and construction. Most of the time, coved ceilings are paired with tray ceilings or special inlays which are used to enhance their appearance and house light fixtures as well. Coved ceilings are also highly ornamental in high-end homes and historic buildings. Historic buildings or even a high-end home needs a coved ceilings for a fantastic ornamental look.  They feature tiles and gilded elements which add style to the ceiling.  

Methods of Creating Coved Ceilings

There are a number of construction methods to create a coved ceiling. The traditional way of installing coved ceiling is by using layers of plaster and wire mesh along the joints between the walls and the ceiling. Today, modern builders usually rely on simple kits to create coved ceilings. These kits include pre-fabricated forms which are used to construct coved ceilings out of wood and drywall.

There are also some who try to recreate the look of coved ceilings by using simple coved molding profiles. One of the easiest ways is to add concave molding to the edges of the ceiling to achieve the coved look. However, this also offers the fewest options in terms of design and customization.

Advantages of Coved Ceilings

Coved ceilings offer a number of benefits to homeowners and here are some of them.

Add Some Style to a Room

Coved ceilings are perfect for adding interest to the tops of walls. These can give them a stylish and elegant finishing touch that can really set off a room. Coved ceilings can also help avoid making the room’s décor look unfinished.

Can Achieve Both Traditional and Modern Look

Whether you’re aiming for a traditional or something more contemporary for your home, a coved ceiling can work for both. It is very effective for creating a character and enhancing an interior design theme. There are also a lot of wall moldings to choose from, ensuring you that there is always something to suit all tastes whether plain or patterned.

Elegant and Comfortable Feel

Coved ceilings can also help smoothen and soften hard lines which can give your home an elegant and comfortable feel. In fact, this type of ceiling is often associated with high-end luxury homes. Therefore, even when your home looks simple, a coved ceiling can make it look more refined.

In fact, coved ceilings can be spotted in some of the world’s famous and renowned hotels and buildings. Some of those are The Dorchester, Claridges, and Blenheim Palace which boast beautiful and stunning coved ceilings adding to their prestige and grandeur interior.

Can Make a Ceiling Appear Higher

When coved ceilings are combined with the right paint colors and molding, it can also make the ceiling appear higher than it actually is, creating a more spacious feeling in a room.

Add Value to Your Property

Installing a coved ceiling is a great way of taking a bare and uninteresting room into a visually stimulating place. It is able to add flair to boring ceiling designs and can help make a home stand out from others on the market. This is indeed a bonus which will add value to your property.

Disadvantages of Coved Ceilings

Coved ceilings have a lot of advantages but buyers should also be aware of a few potential drawbacks that are associated with this type of ceiling. One of the major problems you can face with a coved ceiling is it is a little bit difficult to create compared to a standard ceiling, and this can cost you more. Another challenging part is it can be tough to determine how to properly paint a room or install a crown molding with this type of ceiling because the curved profiles of a coved ceiling lead to tough transitions between walls and ceilings.

Design Ideas for Coved Ceilings

round dining room coved ceiling

Paint and Color Schemes

Utilizing different paint colors or finishes on coved ceilings can highlight this architectural detail and add depth to the room. A lighter shade than the walls will enhance the ceiling’s curvature, while a bold or contrasting color can create a dramatic effect.

Lighting Integration

Strategically placed lighting can accentuate the gentle curves of a coved ceiling, adding ambiance and highlighting the room’s architectural beauty. Indirect lighting, such as LED strips tucked into the cove, can create a soft, glowing effect that enhances the room’s mood.

Decorative Moldings

Adding moldings or trim within or along the edge of the cove can introduce an additional layer of detail and sophistication. This is particularly effective in rooms with higher ceilings, where the added elements can draw the eye upward.

Textural Elements

Applying texture to a coved ceiling, whether through plasterwork, stucco, or other materials, can add depth and interest. For a more subtle approach, consider a smooth finish that emphasizes the clean lines and curves.

Practical Considerations

Installation Process

Incorporating a coved ceiling into a construction or renovation project requires careful planning and skilled craftsmanship. The complexity of the cove and the structure of the existing ceiling will determine the feasibility and method of installation.

Cost Factors

The cost of adding a coved ceiling can vary significantly based on the design’s complexity, materials used, and labor required. Simple coved designs may be more affordable, while intricate or large-scale projects will naturally involve higher expenses.


Coved ceilings generally require minimal maintenance, similar to standard ceilings. Regular cleaning to remove dust and cobwebs, along with periodic inspections for cracks or damage, will keep your coved ceiling looking its best.

Final Thoughts

Coved ceilings offer a unique blend of aesthetic appeal and architectural interest, making them a captivating feature in any home. Whether you’re drawn to their historical roots or their potential for contemporary design, coved ceilings can transform an ordinary room into a space of elegance and charm. By considering the practical aspects of installation and exploring creative design possibilities, homeowners can successfully integrate coved ceilings into their interior design, enhancing both the beauty and value of their living spaces.

But overall, a coved ceiling is also a choice especially for those who want to turn a plain and dull-looking room into a more elegant one with a comfortable feel. We hope the information we shared can help you decide if a coved ceiling is perfect for your home.

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