How to Choose the Right Medallion


We hear frequent questions regarding ceiling medallions.  What size? What style? Should I paint? What about the center hole?  Let's see if we can help!

What size ceiling medallion should you choose?

There are many different opinions and a formula or two to help you pick the right size medallion.  Here is what we have to say about the subject:  A ceiling medallion is an architectural element - just like your crown molding (moulding) or your chair rails. Choose a medallion that suits the style of your room.  

If the ceilings are tall and the molding ornate, then choose something that fits into the decor - an ornate, big medallion larger than your chandelier.  If the room is simple and has 8' ceilings, then choose a plainer medallion that is smaller than your chandelier. Don't worry about the exact size of the medallion.

What style of medallion is right for your chandelier?

Any style is right - again, choose something that suits your room and your home. You can consider matching motifs (Egg and Dart, Greek Key) to your molding. 

Should you paint your medallion?

Yes!  But, how is up to you.  You can match your trim using a nice glossy paint. Or, you can paint it an accent color.  Most medallions are purchased primed and ready for paint.  Victorians would paint the various elements of a medallion in color schemes.  Beautiful if it fits your room. 

Why are the center holes in medallions different?

You will see medallions with center holes that are of varying sizes.  When choosing, keep in mind how your chandelier mounts.

Some medallions have center holes that are smaller than the ceiling box (frequently under 2"). In this case, an electrician will need to install the mounting hardware before the medallion is installed. You can then choose whether to use a canopy or simply use the screw loop without the canopy.  Other medallions have holes that are larger than the canopy you intend to use.  This is okay, as long as your canopy covers the hole in the ceiling.  The bit of the ceiling that peaks through between your canopy and the medallion can be painted the same color as the medallion and will blend in.   

A fancy medallion may protrude some at the very center. For extreme extension, you may need what is called a bee-hive canopy or another type of deep canopy.  

Whatever you do, it will be beautiful! And, if you don't want a medallion, that is perfectly fine. Without a medallion, you may see the gorgeous play of light on your ceiling.  

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