# Grain orientation on a coffered ceiling

## Grain orientation on a coffered ceiling (post #207120)

I'm putting up a coffered ceiling in my 12' x 14' dining room. There are 1/2 " birch plywood panels on the ceiling of each coffer. The opening is 4' 3" x 3' 5". I'm trying to figure out how to orient the grain of these panels.

If I orient the grain with the long side of the room (what my instincts tell me I should do) I will have to use one 4' x 8' sheet per panel, which I really don't want to do. I can get two panels per sheet if I run the grain across the shorter side of the room. Crown molding will hide the 1 1/2" gap on each side making each panel 4' x 3' 5".

I have read that orienting the grain parallel to the shorter side of the room makes a rectangular room appear larger and squarer. Also, we have hardwood floors in the adjacent kitchen that run parallel to the 12' walls.

So that's my dilemma. Should the grain run parallel to the 14' wall or the 12 footer?

Do Google Images for "coffered ceiling" or use this url: http://tinyurl.com/9wqv26j

Not a lot of ceilings with wood panels, but there are a few and they may give you some "feel" for it.

Of all the preposterous assumptions of humanity over humanity, nothing exceeds most of the criticisms made on the habits of the poor by the well-housed, well-warmed, and well-fed.  --Herman Melville

### Steve (post #207120, reply #2 of 16)

Don't let the \$ dictate your decision.

Adding to or widening the dropped sections will quickly make up the difference (well, sort of).

What about widening the perimeter drop-in the right ceiling with complementing depth, a wider perimeter might just look good.

With furniture, will your eye be drawn to the kitchen floor from a prominant location?

A Great Place for Information, Comraderie, and a Sucker Punch.

Remodeling Contractor just outside the Glass City.

Your instincts are probably correct.  Bite the bullet and buy the extra plywood.....plywood never seems to go to waste and you'll find a use for it.

If I could edit my location it would say I'm now in Reno :-)

### It’s not so much (post #207120, reply #4 of 16)

It’s not so much the moola, although that is a consideration. I mean you have to have something left over for beer, right? It’s the orientation.

If I had hardwood floors in there the grain should match the floors orientation I think? Which would put me along the 12’ wall. But if I look into just the little coffer itself I have to go with the other way, parallel to the long side of the ceiling tile. It’s a big picture, little picture kind of thing maybe.

Hover over the house, look down and the grain runs along the 12’ wall. Take a picture of the coffer and the grain runs along the 14’ wall.

Maybe I should of stuck to paint. Paint’s easier.

Thanks for the input.

### Looking at a few of the (post #207120, reply #5 of 16)

Looking at a few of the Google images, it seemed to me that your idea to run the grain parallel to the short side looked best.

Of all the preposterous assumptions of humanity over humanity, nothing exceeds most of the criticisms made on the habits of the poor by the well-housed, well-warmed, and well-fed.  --Herman Melville

### Sitting on the diningroom (post #207120, reply #6 of 16)

Sitting on the diningroom table, grain along the longer side would look better.  Although the first thing I see in such ceilings is the shape and dimensions, but somebody always says, why didn't you.  You've decided to have the best ceiling you can make, so don't let the material cost decide you.

### Just Cut the Panels in Half (post #207120, reply #7 of 16)

If you can cover up the short fall if the grain runs one way, why can't you just cut the panel in half so you have two 4 by 4 panels and put it up which ever way the grain looks better.  You have the same 3 inches to hide either way.

### Still . . . (post #207120, reply #9 of 16)

Still, I'm thinking I need to orient the grain with the length of the house, parallel to the adjacent hardwood floors. I've put up some samples and it does seem to work.

I take it there is no carved in stone, right or wrong answer here.

Thanks for everyone's input.

### If you look at those Google (post #207120, reply #10 of 16)

If you look at those Google images you'll see it both ways.

Of all the preposterous assumptions of humanity over humanity, nothing exceeds most of the criticisms made on the habits of the poor by the well-housed, well-warmed, and well-fed.  --Herman Melville

### there are no rules (post #207120, reply #14 of 16)

there are no rules , do what feels best ,I do it all the time create as i go stick a panel up look at it ,

I have done many coffered ceilings each one is different ,google images will just tell you what was right for that ceiling

thats why i love arts and crafts trim  no rules ,its all visual look at once if you like keep it, if you have to look at it twice and still no final decision rip it out

### Its always good to remember (post #207120, reply #11 of 16)

Its always good to remember too that in the long run, you are probably the only one that will really notice it.  We lived in house for 17 years.  The two walls marking the doorway between our living room and kitchen are off by over an inch from one another.  Its a span of only 3 feet but nobody ever noticed it in all those years until you go to lay down floor tile and even then it took 20 minutes of what the HE.. is wrong here to put a level across the opening and see the problem.

I'm sure the contractor, who is a friend, noticed it everytime he was in the house and the carpet and vinyl floor guys probably would bug them every time they saw it but we never noticed it. (Afterall, how many times do you go stick your face up to your wall and sight down the thing anyway?)

I'm sure everyone on here has a spot in their home or other project that they know is there but no one else ever notices.

### That's the big problem with (post #207120, reply #12 of 16)

That's the big problem with doing your own work -- you can remember where you screwed up, even though no one else can see it.

Of all the preposterous assumptions of humanity over humanity, nothing exceeds most of the criticisms made on the habits of the poor by the well-housed, well-warmed, and well-fed.  --Herman Melville

### Agree, a ceiling is something you feel, not look at (post #207120, reply #13 of 16)

A ceiling is something you feel, not look at.  Oh sure you come into a room the first time and notice a nice, unique ceiling.  You admire the wood.  Then you more or less ignore it, but you feel the warmth, you feel the detail.  You will not think about the direction of the grain.

The grain pattern in a floor is more important, you see that, you look at that, in order to watch your step and when navigating so it does hae an impact on the way you view a room and how it makes you feel about the size of the space.

Just my thoughts.

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### where is post number 14? (post #207120, reply #15 of 16)

My screen does not show post 14 so I will post number 15 to see if 14 shows up.

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### do (post #207120, reply #16 of 16)

This one says it's 14, and is right above yours on this screen.

### there are no rules (post #207120, reply #14 of 15)

by toolpouchguy in reply to SteveB4 [original] on Sat, 12/01/2012 - 19:09

there are no rules , do what feels best ,I do it all the time create as i go stick a panel up look at it ,

I have done many coffered ceilings each one is different ,google images will just tell you what was right for that ceiling

thats why i love arts and crafts trim no rules ,its all visual look at once if you like keep it, if you have to look at it twice and still no final decision rip it out

A Great Place for Information, Comraderie, and a Sucker Punch.

Remodeling Contractor just outside the Glass City.