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Height of Cathedral Ceiling?

Posted by obwannab (My Page) on
Sun, Jan 6, 08 at 12:05

We're in the middle of designing our house, and are trying to decide how high to make the cathedral ceiling. The Great Room and the Kitchen are basically one large open rectangle. The dimensions of that total rectangle are about 39' x 19'. Obviously we plan to orient the cathedral along the length of 39', but how high should we go?

We want it to look very open and large, but at the same time not out of proportion to the width of the room. The designer is recommending 16-18'. What do ya'll think?

Any pics you have would be awesome.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Height of Cathedral Ceiling?

Our great room peaks at 22ft, but the kitchen is dropped to 9ft. I really like having the difference in the ceilings and cannot imagine the sound if kitchen were raised.

Our MBR peaks at 18ft. More cozy for the bedroom. Wouldn't be bad in the great room either.

Great room: not the best photo but it shows the ridge beam

RE: Height of Cathedral Ceiling?

Thanks Allison. That is really awesome looking. What are the dims of that room? It looks like the plate height in the LR is at about 10' then? What did that do the required pitch in your roof? Did you price out other options, or was this simply the way you wanted it regardless?

RE: Height of Cathedral Ceiling?


The great room section is 24 x 19.

By plate height, you're asking how high is the "wall" in the great room (where wall meets ceiling)? It's 10ft.

Roof pitch is 12:12 on the main section of the house. Our stone "barn" garage attached to the house is 14:12.)

We did not price out other options.

fyi, our beams were installed by the framers during construction (before the roof was sheathed.)

RE: Height of Cathedral Ceiling?

My living room is 18x28 with the peak about 23 feet up, but it runs the opposite direction you might expect. The sidewalls are 9 feet, and the roof raises at 12/12, adding 14 feet to the sidewalls.

A loft library overlooks the space. The master bedroom rises to about 14 feet, so does the exercise room where I'll have a rock climbing wall.

The LR was originally supposed to be wider than 18, but we needed to loose some sq. ft., and that was the simplest way to do it. I read some comments after the build was started about what a bad idea it is for a space to be taller than it is wide, But it really doesn't feel strange to me-- maybe its the library that helps, or the fact that only the very center of the room is super high.

I was concerned that the room might seem more like a lobby than a living room, but it seems to be working out well. The ceiling gives it major impact, but the feeling remains cozy and relaxed.

I'd be just as happy with the living room if it were 5 or 6 feet lower, but then the sidewalls would be too low for the library space.

I really needed a 12/12 roof for the exterior to look the way I wanted it-- it was a matter of angles and the curved topped windows, and the way the lines of the roof meet at the center, supported by a large log post.

RE: Height of Cathedral Ceiling?

You probably want to 'try on' some spaces by walking through model homes. More isn't always better. Towering spaces can feel cold and lobby-like instead of cozy and welcoming. Also can be hard to control sound and heat.

Early 'Great Rooms' (Great Halls) were purpose built to accommodate open fires and the stink of people and animals living with minimal cleaning beyond fresh rushes on the floor twice a year! Lobbies in public spaces serve some of the same needs. You can feel 'lost' in a private home where rooms feel like public spaces. There's 'dramatic' and there's 'cold' -- a personal taste issue.

RE: Height of Cathedral Ceiling?

Early 'Great Rooms' (Great Halls) were purpose built to accommodate open fires and the stink of people and animals living with minimal cleaning beyond fresh rushes on the floor twice a year

:::::::::::SPEW:::::::::: Warn a person, would ya! LOL

Our Master starts sloping at 9 feet and flattens out at 16 feet. The room is not overly large so it doesn't feel too tall or cold to me. I've posted this before but just in case you have not seen it.

RE: Height of Cathedral Ceiling?

Thanks ya'll. I think we'll probably shoot for around 20'. We're looking at 10/12 to 12/12 pitched roof lines as well.

Allison, that's cool your beams are structural. We'll probably just do faux boxed beams, installed after the room is sheet rocked. Wish we could find, and afford, really aged antiqued beams.

Lindy, yes I've seen your pics. Your house is awesome! In fact we are planning something very similar for our Master as well.

Actually, if Allison's house met Lindy's house, that's about how ours is developing. I'm very appreciative of any pics ya'll share. Thanks!

Oruboris, Thanks, that helps alot. I want it to look open, but not lobby like. I'm glad it still looks nice with a narrower width, like ours will be.

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