As the name may suggest, load-bearing columns are literally columns that bear the central load of your home and are cemented into the foundation. For this reason, when designing an open space or opening up your existing space, these cannot be removed. When decorating around load-bearing columns or incorporating columns into your space, there are many options. To help your decision-making process easier, we have reviewed multiple sources for inspiration and ideas on how to best decorate your column.
Some homes and rooms have columns in the middle of the space. While these can be a nuisance, there are several ways to decorate your column so that it blends in with the rest of your room or serves a purpose. Two main options for consideration are whether you want your column to be decorative or functional. Keeping these two options in mind, the top 17 most popular ways (in no particular order) to decorate a column are:
- Counter space
- Bar counter
- Room divider
- Storage cabinet
- Wall art
There are other questions to be answered in addition to deciding on how to decorate the column in the middle of your room. How do you know if your column is load-bearing? How do you disguise a support column? What color should your column be? Continue reading for these answers and more.
How To Decorate A Column In The Middle Of Your Room
Let’s look closer at the 17 ways to decorate a column in the middle of your room.
Painting your column the same color as the rest of the walls in your room can create a cohesive look to your space. Using the same trim as the walls of your home also adds a nice decorative touch.
In order to make your column an architectural focal point in your room, consider using contrasting paint to achieve this look.
Using two different shades of paint is another way to accent your column. In the example above, the grey bottom of the columns provides an accent to the white walls.
Adding molding to your column can give it a classic sophisticated look. The molding used in the picture above is simple, complementing the look throughout the rest of the space. This molding also coordinates with the barn door in the background.
Tiling your column is another way to add some color and texture to your space. Mixing and matching tiles can be an interesting alternative to traditional tiles.
For a rustic or urban look to your space, bricking the outside of your column can drastically change the look of your room. If completely bricking your column is too much brick for your taste, a partially bricked column is also an option.
Wood paneling is another option to cover your column. The dark wood covering the column above contrasts the white in the room and is matched by other details in the room. For an easier alternative to wooden planks, or even laminate wood planks, consider peel and stick real distressed wood wall panels.
The column in this kitchen is covered in a stone veneer, a thin stone covering similar to tile. This stone-covered column contrasts beautifully with the modern look of the rest of the kitchen. Faux stone panels similar to the one shown below, are available for cost efficiency and easier installation.
For a high-end look, marble is another stone that can add a modern touch to your columns and an overall classy feel to your space. While pricey, marble can be custom ordered from specialty marble and granite companies near you.
Mirror surfaces covering your column is one way to almost camouflage your column into your space. Reflecting images of the rest of the room, the mirrored column almost seems to disappear. Using the tiles below is an alternate way of covering your column surface.
For a nautical touch, a rope can be wrapped around the column all the way up or down for an alternative way to cover your column. Your column will easily become a part of the room’s decor rather than a nuisance.
If the placement of the column in your room allows, a shelf can make this space in between the column and the wall a useful space. Placing shelving units at different levels as shown in the example creates a unique personalized shelf space.
11. Counter Space
If the column in question is in a spot near your kitchen, one idea for utilizing the column is creating counter space. By adding a counter made from the material of your choice to the space in between the column and a wall or existing counter, valuable square footage of counter space can be created.
12. Liquor/Wine Cabinet
This creative way to use the columns in your room involves liquor and wine storage. This cabinet can be created by installing a wooden support beam or additional column, though not necessarily load-bearing, next to the column in your room and adding shelving spaced far enough apart to store liquor bottles. Glass shelving can be interchanged with wooden shelves and notched wood can be used for wine storage.
13. Room Divider
As with many open floor plans, you may find it hard to distinguish one room from another. Using your column for a side of a room divider can help solve that problem.
14. Storage Cabinet
Although this particular storage cabinet looks to be storing glassware, a similar cabinet could be used to store any number of items in your home. Depending on the size of the storage cabinet that you wish to build, shelving and a glass front are added to either the front or side of the column to create a custom cabinet.
15. Wall Art
Painted columns offer the perfect spot for wall art that can create a cohesive look for your space. Decorating your column with wall art that contains accent colors for your room is a great way to draw attention away from the column itself.
Whether artificial plants or real plants suit your home better, columns offer a great place to add some greenery to your space.
Trellis With Vines
A trellis is a large criss-cross structure that makes a great ladder for vines to climb. Artificial vines can be intertwined in the trellis for a lifelike look without the mess of leaves falling from real vines.
Columns can be used to hang extra lighting for your space. Wireless battery operated sconces such as the one below are easy to install with no need for complicated wiring.
How Do You Know If A Column Is Load-Bearing?
Load-bearing columns are those that connect to the structure of your home at its core. Load-bearing columns connect directly with the concrete foundation. Because they literally bear the load of your home, they cannot be removed. A column in the middle of your home (or rooms) is not just decorative.
Find your home blueprints to find out for sure if a column is load-bearing. If blueprints are not available, load-bearing columns can be found by finding the beams of your home, seeing what walls and joints of your home connect with those beams, and following those columns all the way through the height of the home.
How Do You Disguise A Support Column?
Disguising a support column can be done in many of the ways that we discussed above. While a large structure in the middle of the room may be hard to hide, painting the column the same color as the rest of the room, using mirrors to cover your column, or using your column to create the framework for custom shelving can disguise your column.
What Color Should Columns Be?
Columns should be whatever color fits the needs of your decorative vision and home. As discussed above, painting the column the same color as the rest of the room creates a cohesive effect with the rest of the walls. If it is your desire to match the rest of the walls in the room, you may also want to consider matching the trim. Contrasting colored columns can be used to draw the focus of the room to your column.
With so many options available to disguise, decorate, or utilize your column, we hope this guide can help you to considerably narrow down the options. Before you go, be sure to check out these other home decor guides that may be of interest to you: