Making a Tray Ceiling

Written by Lee Wyatt (last updated January 25, 2019)

There are several reasons for making a tray ceiling in a room that currently doesn't have one. These reasons can range from wanting to add a bit of elegance to the room, or perhaps giving the room the illusion of extra height, or even adding a bit of architectural details. This isn't really all that difficult of a task, if you follow a few simple steps.

  1. Decide what you want. There are two basic ways that you can go about making a tray ceiling. The first is to make a recess, where you have a raised outer edge. The second is to make the inner part of the ceiling lower than the outside perimeter. Both methods create a tray like look, all you need to do is decide which look you prefer. These instructions assume you go with the raised outer edge.
  2. Make your design. Using a piece of paper, begin creating a blue print of what you are wanting to build. The best way to do this is by measuring your ceiling (which basically means measuring the floor) and adding the dimensions to your design. Keep in mind that the more depth you want, the more crown molding you will need to get. A basic rule of thumb for figuring out the amount of material you will need is to measure the width of the ceiling, and then multiply by two, and then divide by the length of the crown molding pieces you are going to use, and multiply that answer by the number of profiles you want to use.
  3. Get the materials. After you have finished drawing out the blue print, you can begin purchasing and gathering the materials you want. Take your design to your local home improvement store, and talk to a clerk. They should be able to help you purchase the materials you need based off of the design you have. Take those materials home, in addition to miter and coping saws if you don't have them. If you don't have enough to purchase these tools, go ahead and rent them instead.
  4. Miter your joints. Follow the blue prints that you have, and begin mitering all the joints, in addition to using a coping saw to remove anything excess. This will allow you to actually overlap the joints, instead of placing them next to each other. It may be a bit of extra work, but it will help prevent warping and cracking as the seasons change.
  5. Paint the ceiling. Paint your ceiling a lighter color than the rest of your walls, so that it will help draw the eyes towards the center. This will eventually help add to the illusion of depth.
  6. Install the crown molding. Begin adding and installing the crown molding according to your blue prints. Keep in mind that the further you down the wall that you add the crown molding, the deeper the tray will be.

With the crown molding installed, you are now ready to do the finishing touches on the project. The most basic of all these touches is to finish the ceiling as you would a newly installed dry wall. This means that you need to tape and apply drywall mud where the crown molding and ceiling meet. Once you have done that, and allowed the compound to dry, you can lightly sand the area, and then paint it like you would a normal ceiling.

Author Bio

Lee Wyatt

Contributor of numerous Tips.Net articles, Lee Wyatt is quickly becoming a regular "Jack of all trades." He is currently an independent contractor specializing in writing and editing. Contact him today for all of your writing and editing needs! Click here to contact. ...


Organizing Vehicle Financing

Perhaps the single most confusing aspect of purchasing a new car, truck, motorcycle, or any other kind of vehicle, is ...

Discover More

Basic Vacuum Repairs

There are a variety of reasons that a vacuum can begin to act funny, and almost all of them can be found within the ...

Discover More

Sanding Wood Floors

Do you have a wood floor that you simply love, but feel that you need to replace it? Well instead of replacing it, why ...

Discover More

MAX Power! A powerful lithium-ion drill/driver that delivers 0-to-650 RPM and 115 inches-per-pound of torque in a lightweight, easy-to-use package. An anti-slip soft grip and LED worklight makes this tool a delight to use. Check out Black & Decker 20-Volt Cordless Drill/Driver today!

More Home Improvement Tips

Entertainment Centers

Do you want an organized look in your family room? Try an entertainment center to create space for your television as ...

Discover More

Tricks to Alter the Size or Mood of a Room

Is your home slightly larger than a breadbox? Feeling cramped in your small apartment? Well, here are a few decorating ...

Discover More

Necessary Garage Upgrades

Of all the rooms in the house, perhaps one of the most difficult to accurately upgrade is the garage. For some reason, ...

Discover More

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] (all 7 characters, in the sequence shown) in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is 7 + 4?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)