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The latest interior design trend is wallpaper on the ceiling

Interior designers are using wallpaper on the ceiling more and more these days.
/ Source: TODAY

Forget boring white ceilings — the big interior design craze these days is covering the fifth wall in the room with wallpaper.

While the idea isn’t entirely new — it’s been around for a few years — it’s quickly becoming more mainstream, with examples popping up on design blogs, Pinterest and Instagram.

Look up! Wallpaper on the ceiling is an interior design trend these days.Courtesy of Jennifer Stoner Interiors

“(Wallpaper) can be used to create so many different effects depending on your design vision for the space,” Jennifer Stoner, an interior designer in Richmond, Virginia, told TODAY Home. As for using it on your ceiling, she said the key is "to strike the perfect balance and scale in the room."

So, how bold should you go?

“A room that has a lot of different patterns such as a living space or bedroom with a variety of fabrics may benefit from something a little more subtle or textural,” Stoner advised. “And a room with less competing patterns, such as a bathroom or a dining room can handle a more boldly patterned paper.”

A dining room feels extra luxurious with wallpaper on the ceiling.Courtesy of Jennifer Stoner Interiors

Summer Thornton, an interior designer in Chicago, said it’s also important to choose the right color for the paper.

“It will cast that color light across the entire room which can further impact the mood and feeling of the space,” she explained.

This living room ceiling covered with wallpaper still allows the space to feel light and airy thanks to the paper's design and color.Courtesy of Summer Thornton Design

“White ceilings have been so common because they reflect a lot of light, and that light is neutral in color, but a wallpapered ceiling changes that,” she continued. “It absorbs some of the light and adds a color hue so you want to be sure you have plenty of lumens to keep the space bright and that you're okay with moody lighting with a bit of color.”

As for installation, the designers both agreed this is not a DIY project.

“This is for professionals only,” Thornton said. “There's no room for error.”

That’s because it’s not only difficult to wallpaper overhead, but you also want to be sure seams are hidden. A wallpapered ceiling catches the eye, so you want it to look great and not like a botched home improvement project.

This bedroom from designer Bari Ackerman in Scottsdale, Arizona, gets a beautiful pop of color from the floral wallpaper on the ceiling.Bari Ackerman/

“On the flipside, if you're afraid of the commitment or expense, try a temporary paper,” Stoner said. “These are becoming more and more popular, and they are removable much like contact paper. This is a great way to stick your toe in the water without wading all the way in.”

The results could be stunning, though.

“I think a wallpapered ceiling creates a feeling of coziness that wraps around the people in the space, but it also draws the eye up, creating something unexpected and interesting to look at,” Thornton said. “It creates a moment of surprise and delight that brings life to a room.”