25 Decorative Ceiling Medallions That Will Transform Any Room

by Joanna Stewart

Wed, Nov 14, 2018

classic dining room ceiling medallion

Photo via In-Site Interior Design

Want a dining room that looks like it belongs in Architectural Digest?

A ceiling medallion might be the answer.

For centuries, architects and interior designers have used medallions and decorative finishes on the ceiling as an integral part of their design.

However, recently the ceiling has been forgotten by DIY decorators and even professional interior designers.

Not only would designers during the Italian Renaissance decorate the ceiling, they would spend lavishly on the best painters they could find.

Have you seen the Sistine Chapel? This is a great example of the effort that was put into designing this space we rarely think about any more.

Whether you live in a contemporary or Victorian style home, there is a ceiling medallion to compliment your decor. Take a look at our photo gallery to get ideas for your living room, dining room, kitchen or even your bedroom.

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elegant living room with ceiling medallion

Photo via Ruhl Walker Architects

So what exactly is a ceiling medallion? Well, it surrounds the base of a chandelier on the ceiling. Think of it like the base of a lamp – but upside down.

They are typically made out of Polyurethane which makes them lightweight, but they have a solid plaster appearance. You can paint them any color you wish. Typically they are sold as blank white medallions with the expectation that you will paint it to match your room.

Traditional medallions are round with a variety of relief decorations. They are usually decorated with carved flowers or leaves and intricate patterns. In addition, they are available in simple and modern designs that are great for contemporary style homes as well.

Circular dining room with view of the city. In the center of the room is a round dining room table. Above the table is an organic wood chandelier and a large ceiling medallion.

penthouse dining room with ceiling medallion

Photo via Jessica Lagrange Interiors

Medallions are great in any room of the house including the kitchen. This eat-in kitchen features an oblong medallion above a small dining room table. The ceiling also features a decorative finish and crown molding.

rustic kitchen with ceiling medallion

Photo via Ben Herzog

This minimalist bedroom is completely white except for the hardwood floors. While there is almost no decoration in the room, the designer showcases a simple chandelier with a modern ceiling medallion above.

white bedroom with ceiling medallion

Photo via Carick Home Improvements

This living room has high ceilings and uses an oversized chandelier as the focal point of the room. Above the chandelier is a medium sized ceiling medallion. The size of the medallion in proportion to the chandelier is an important decision to make. This medallion is properly sized with the other furniture in the room, even though the chandelier is extremely large.

contemporary living room with ceiling medallion

Photo via Jensen C. Vasil

Contemporary dining room with a rustic wood table and modern dining room chairs. Above the table is a contemporary glass chandelier that resembles a bunch of balloons. The ceiling medallion is large and ornate compared to the rest of the decor. Notice how the walls and ceiling are painted the same color, in contrast to the white wainscoting.

contemporary dining room with ceiling medallion

Photo via Heather Garrett Design

This traditional dining room features a gold medallion above a large crystal chandelier. By changing the color of the medallion the designer was able to emphasize the ornamentation. Below the chandelier is an antique wood dining room table with fabric covered chairs.

traditional dining room with ceiling medallion

Photo via Fun House Furnishings and Design

Not all medallions need to be ornate. This teen bedroom features a basic light fixture with a large medallion painted lime green and red. There is no additional decoration on the ceiling, but the medallion compliments other colors within the room.

teen bedroom with ceiling medallion

Photo via B Fein Interiors

So far we’ve showcased homes in a variety of styles including very traditional and ultra contemporary. This home lies somewhere in between as it is decorated in a mid-century modern style. The ornate medallion compliments the crown molding throughout the room. Also notice how the modern chandelier contrasts against the traditional decorative ceiling – a perfect blend of new and old world style.

midcentury living room with ceiling medallion

Photo via Chantel Elshout Design

Modern bedroom with a traditional black chandelier. On the ceiling is a custom made square medallion that is a great addition to a modern style home. The designer commented that the medallion was created to hide the existing electrical outlet.

modern bedroom with ceiling medallion

Photo via Britto Charette Interiors

This eclectic living room features a crystal chandelier below a large ceiling medallion. I should point out that this is another example of a room that has both crown molding and a medallion. They are usually installed together but they are not necessarily mutually exclusive.

eclectic living room with ceiling medallion

Photo via Martins Camisull Architects

Contemporary dining room decorated with gold features. These include a chandelier with a large gold shade, gold curtains and chairs with golden fabric. The medallion has flower petals and features a detail relief pattern.

gold dining room with ceiling medallion

Photo via Optimise Design

This San Francisco living room is unique in comparison to the other rooms in this gallery. Below the medallion is modern art mobile instead of a chandelier or light fixture.

san fran living room with ceiling medallion

Photo via Todd Davis Architecture

Although dark colored ceilings normally make a room look smaller, this dining room uses the contrasting color to make the height of the room less intimidating. The designer has also chosen to use a large chandelier to help scale down the size of the room.

transitional dining room ceiling medallion

Photo via McGill Design Group

This dining room proves that you don’t need to have a large space to take advantage of a ceiling medallion. Below the basic metal hanging light fixture is a tall table with two wooden stools. There is abstract art on the wall and hardwood floors underneath the table.

simple dining room ceiling medallion

Photo via Megan Buchanan

ceiling medallion decorations

Photo via Joi

As we’ve tried to illustrate, there are many ways to use ceiling medallions in your home. The photos above were great examples of how to incorporate one into any style home. Not to mention we showcased a wide range of rooms including dining rooms, living rooms, kitchens and bedrooms.

Although medallions were originally used in more traditionally decorated homes, they can be incorporated into more contemporary spaces with a little creativity.

We selecting one for your home don’t forget to select a size that is in proportion to your chandelier as well as the rest of the room. While there are no hard and fast rules for selecting the size, you may want to create a cardboard template to experiment with sizes before you order one online.

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