Learn About Tray Ceiling And

Thinking of turning your home’s ceiling upside down? Ceiling with eye catchy design and engineering ingenuity can easily lift up the happy spirit of your home and make it look more spacious. A new roof can do great things for a room’s atmosphere, nicely affecting the lighting, and general appearance. It may even raise the value of your home in front of others.

A tray ceiling adds a modern punch to any home that has had a standard roof before. It adds a sophisticated architecture element to your home decor while offering a space for an above-the-head art statement. Read on, to know more about the basics of tray ceiling design, how to install it correctly and decorate it for better ocular attraction.

What is Tray Ceiling?

Before knowing tray ceiling applications and its ability to enhance the interior beauty, essential to understanding what is a tray ceiling and how it varies from other ceiling types. A tray ceiling is a roof design that looks like an upside down the rectangular tray, which is made of various materials to create an illusion so that the room looks bigger. However, the height of the tray depends on one’s personal preference.

Installing Process of a Tray Ceiling

installing process of a tray ceilingThe installation process of a tray ceiling varies mostly on the timing of the construction. The cap can be constructed during either construction of the home or its remodeling phase, and following this, the process can be undertaken in two significant ways. For ease of understanding, we will provide both of the installation processes briefly.

Tray Ceiling Setup for New Construction

Creating a tray ceiling while constructing the house is comparatively easy than remodeling it.

In the time of the construction, the builder does not need to lower the ceiling height to integrate the drop-down border. The builder has the freedom to choose roof trusses instead of stick framing. If he orders the trusses, he will get it pre-engineered already suitable for the wall attachment. Both stick framing and truss setting are jobs set for professional, so it is better to leave this in the trusted hand.

Tray Ceiling Setup for Existing Rooms

Angling a tray ceiling within an existing ceiling requires modification of the joists or trusses. It is better to take advice from a structural engineer or the manufacturer of the roof trusses before applying it. However, we will demonstrate the procedure in a certain manner so that you can get an idea of how this tray ceiling setup works.

Attaching the Tray Ceiling

  • Cut drywall with a sharp utility knife and a straightedge in a certain size and then use coarse sandpaper and a sanding block to smoothen the edge of the drywall. It is better using T-braces to assist oneself and a partner if needed when installing the drywall
  • Nail the drywall and leave 6-inch intervals between the nails. Hollow the drywall by hitting the nail to break the surface material
  • Tape the joints, use the joint solution on the tape, and the nail dents. Let the solution dry at least 24 hours, and then apply a second and third coat. After that, feather the edges of the drywall with medium-grit sandpaper and a sanding block
  • Tape the corners and specific areas where the walls meet the ceiling. Apply joint compound then polish with a sandpaper
  • Measure the width of the lowered area. It is obvious to all how tray ceiling is created yet for clear idea understand the thing that tray ceiling is made by forming a lower rim to the roof rather than plucking elements from the center. The width of this ledge is typically 1 or 2 feet depending on the magnitude of the room
  • Measure the shape of the lowered area (Use a chalk snap line to mark this outline)
  • Frame the outlined area with 1-inch thick furring strips and Secure it with glue and nails
Final Work
  • Pin 1/2-inch thick drywall to the furring to shroud the space from the wall-edge to the furring strip edge and then let the walls dry for a few days. Wait as long as your joint compound instruction says to wait.
  • Connect the lowered section of the ceiling to the upper level with a 3-inch wide vinyl. The bead set around the perimeter of the outline at an angle. Using chalk to make an outline where the edge of the vinyl joined the upper-level ceiling
  • Staple the vinyl bead with the lowered section joint
  • Attach the longer vinyl beads first, conceal the edges, and seal the drywall with joint adhesive
  • Sandpaper the area and coat it with the primer solution
  • Apply caulk to the edges
  • At last, paint the ceiling so that the contrast level of the ceiling becomes visible.

Favorite Themes of Tray Ceiling Nowadays

Favorite Themes of Tray Ceiling NowadaysMost of the house owners are installing two major tray ceiling ideas for their tray ceiling to make it trendy and gorgeous, and those are cove and crown moldings. Cove and crown molding show almost the same characteristics with a slight change of attributes. Carpenters use both of them decoratively to give a stylish modern look to the tray ceiling. However, the differences are noticeable to the naked eyes, and major contracts are provided below for your grasp.

Crown Molding

Crown Molding Features


  • A common combination of convex and concave profile features
  • Generally used as ceiling trim and with only the wider versions readily available
  • Create an illusion of being the ceiling downwards
  • The different profile can be combined
  • limited applications than the cove
  • Has a flat back corner at an angle
  • Can’t be used on bottom corners
  • Always has angled edges to fit flat against wall and ceiling

Designing Tray Ceiling with Crown Molding

How Design Tray Ceiling with Crown MoldingWhat do you think about your tray ceiling? Do you want to attach a crown molding to your ceiling that isn’t flat? Here’s how to cut and fit the tray ceiling crown molding without breaking the back.

Materials and Tools
  • Crown molding
  • 2-by-4-inch lumber
  • Drill
  • Table saw
  • Miter saw
  • Nail gun
  • Tinted wood putty
  • Ceiling paint

Crown Molding Mounting Process

  • Cut the lumber 2-by-4 to make it angled with 45-degree-angle and remove one corner
  • Repeat the same process and eliminate the opposite corner
  • Then give the lumber a straight half cut. Nail the 2-by-2s to the wall with a level line
  • If you want to attach lightening in the future, add some clips with a gap of 18 inches
  • Paint the crown molding and let it dry
  • Determine the type of cut is necessary for each piece to fit correctly
  • Nail the molding into place with precision, and fill the holes with putty

Its might seems very easy by reading the procedure but trust me! You have to hire professionals; to set up these designed molding. Because the setting requires precise angle measurements otherwise, it can go wrong.

Cove Molding

Cove Molding Features


  • Simple bowing inward status
  • Capable of a sharp transition between wall and ceiling
  • Also available in narrow widths that meet various woodworking purposes
  • Low profile variations than crown molding
  • Smaller models have a square 90 °back that fills corners
  • Can be used for both top or bottom corners
  • angled edges vary on demand
  • good gran and simplicity its best feature

Tray Ceiling Customization Ideas

Tray Ceiling Customization IdeasGenerally, homeowners prefer tray ceilings ideas that can be installed in rooms with very higher elevation. The point of arranging the ceiling this way is to avoid space cluttering with too much design and flourish the modern art. With the raised area, also open up spots for unique lighting options and other textural beautification.

There are vast ranges of different ideas to dress up tray ceiling decor. The following segments are some of the most commonly used elements.

Painting Is the Best Illusion

Painting the tray ceiling with a contrasting color is one of the most beautiful ways to make the roof stand out from drywall. You can utilize color to your advantage to add dimension to a room. Example, painting the ceiling tray with a darker color than the surrounding wall will create the illusion of more space while appearing the tall ceiling even higher.

Textural Enchantment

Tarnished elements easily uphold the homey feel. A grooved wooden pattern in the tray puts the textural diversity of natural wood on display. If you want to display a quaint farmhouse effect, a wooden tray painted in a slate or light blue color will do the job.

Double Tray Installation

In a higher ceiling, a double tray design truly draws the attention upwards to the centerpiece. This delivers a stunning vantage point for a jaw-dropping art effect, a colorful mural, or other objects of interest. The double tray goes well with classic decors, such as Rococo-inspired interiors or Spanish-style Colonial framework. However, with odd color choice and little tidiness, it also can be done with modern designs.

Lighting Creates Enigma

Applying lights on the tray ceiling generally make your guest to raise their head above. Chandeliers and another decorative lighting can easily enhance the brightness of the room and illuminate the roof vividly. Tray ceilings generally provide enough space for ceiling fans and can lights, which is a great opportunity to make the roof more lucrative and presentable.

Murals and Stencils

Tray ceiling created space is a perfect place to turn it into a show off the canvas. Stenciled designs with bold colors, elaborate murals, and striped slopes are just some of the ways to highlight the custom-built ceilings.

Elegant Lighting for Tray Ceiling

Elegant Lighting for Tray CeilingTo add some happy spirit to your bored living space, an all-around tray ceiling lighting can be an excellent idea. Cove lighting can add elegance and life to the shabbiest room. Cove lighting is indirect lighting built into ledges or valences in a ceiling or high on the walls of a room. We’ll demonstrate how to make cove lighting using LED strip lighting and wire it up.

Required Tools for Installing

  • 18-gauge brad nailer
  • Compressor
  • Drill/driver – cordless
  • Miter saw
  • Table saw

How to Install the Light Strip?

To give a brief idea about light strip installation, the systematic procedures are given below.

For Precision, Mark the Wall

  • Draw marks to highlight the bottom of the light strip and the bottom-base
  • Do measuring from the ceiling in assorted places and connect the marks to gain a precise distance between the bay and the ceiling
  • Cutting a couple of blocks of wood to use as marking gauges will be time-saving.

Set Up the LED Light Strip

  • Try to place the LED strip on the wall before the cove is up because it is difficult to set the lights inside the cove
  • Start from the point, in which the transformer will be installed
  • Set the tape support on the first few feet of the LED strip so it would be easy to pull off the tape before connecting the lights
  • To begin with, push the strip to the wall in one spot then pull the tape out a couple of feet and press it to the wall at that point as well
  • Repeat this and check if it’s straight or not
  • If its fine, applying the same process stick the whole light strip

Placing the Cove

  • Place the base on the wall with 2-inch screws into every beam
  • Cut out a section of the base to make room, so it’s not visible from the floor
  • Cut blocks to support the crown
  • before cutting the piece, adjust saw blade to the same angle as the crown
  • Before installing the blocks, mark which way is up

Fish the Cables

  • Cut out the outlet box to pull the power for the lights from an interior wall.
  • Cut out the nails and change it with a larger box to make room for the new wires
  • Removing the existing box will ease the work
  • Shove back the extra cables into the wall cavity after the finishing the wiring

Connecting With Transformer and Install the Crown Molding

  • Glued the transformer in a hollow space or Velcro it for smooth, stable wire connection
  • Arrange some extra wire beside the transformer from the wiring outlet dimple so that whether the transformer is a little far from the wiring box, it could not create any problem
  • Cut out the base so the transformer can sit lower in the cove

After finishing the connection, put on the crown molding with the base and cover up the cove lights. Switch the lights and enjoy the illumination.

Some Things to Consider Before You Start

A contractor can smoothly handle ceiling work, but tray ceilings, in particular, are best if left to the pros. Even, sometimes it becomes difficult for a seasoned professional. Therefore, it is expected that you may have to spend more on this project. Furthermore, include extra budget, if you are planning to install lighting as well, because in this case also have to hire an electrician.


Primarily, tray ceilings introduce an excellent tone of architectural artistry to a room’s interior. Ceilings have the power to turn an ordinary cubicle a spectacular design statement. Last advice, hire a professional contractor to build your tray ceiling to avoid catastrophic situations. Spend little more if you need but don’t let the weak construction sabotage your apartments interior.


Please enter your name here
Please enter your comment!