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Adding Architectural Interest to Your Home's Interior

Adding Architectural Interest to Your Home's Interior

No one wants a ‘cookie cutter’ or ‘builder grade’ home. Our homes are something we work hard for, and we want them to be a reflection of ourselves. However, this reflection doesn’t happen overnight. It takes time to make your house feel like home. Some of us are lucky to have homes with existing architectural interests. Others of us have to plan to add architectural details to our remodels. We’re here to help you navigate the best options for your home’s interior. Here are some of our client's favorites. 

Transom Windows

Transom windows are popular for homeowners looking to add architectural interest to their homes. Not only are they nice to look at, but they are also a great way to let more light into a space. They are often installed over doors, both interior and exterior. When used over an exterior door, such as a front door, they let in light without sacrificing privacy. When used over an interior door, they can make the entrance to the room feel more spacious.

Transom windows can also make your ceilings appear higher than they are. If you want to add even more interest to them, consider using decorative glass to help draw the eye upwards.


Tray Ceilings

Tray ceilings are a great way to accent a room and make it feel more grand. A tray ceiling is a recessed portion of a ceiling. They are a versatile choice and can often be found in bedrooms, kitchens, and living rooms. Some people choose to leave them as simple by just recessing the ceiling and painting it as you would a normal ceiling. Others choose to make it more of a focal point by installing trim around it or painting it an accent color. 

home addition master suite with bed and book shelf

Board and Batten 

Board and batten is often used to accent a feature wall in a home, although some people choose to use it throughout the house. While the term is generally used to describe boards attached to the wall, there are a variety of specific styles that people install in their homes.

Some of our clients' favorites include grid walls and wainscoting. The grid style is perfect for an accent wall, while wainscoting is a great way to break up a wall's color. 

Basement Remodel

Custom Built-Ins

Built-ins are the perfect way to add architectural interest and function to your home. Popular built-ins include bookshelves, desks, banquette seating, cubbies, and recessed wall niches.

Once you have a plan for your built-in, there are plenty of ways to customize it to suit your needs. For example, our clients often include charging stations for their electronics in cubbies. Other options, like bookshelves, can be customized to what you want to store in them. 

custom wood built in bookshelf with books in home remodel in chicago-JPG-1

Arched Doorways

Arched doorways are a great way to bring old-world charm to your home. Often used as an accented entry into a kitchen or dining room, they can easily transform the feeling of a room.

Arched doorways are typically used in standard-sized door openings. However, you may want to consider using them as a double-sized door opening to accent a living or family room entryway.

Trim and doors for the doorway are a personal choice. If you are looking for something more ornate, consider adding trim casing around the arch and doorway. If you consider yourself more of a minimalist, consider skipping the trim. When it comes to doors, privacy is usually the deciding factor. If your arched doorway leads to a bedroom or bathroom, you'll want to include doors. If your arched doorway leads to a family room, consider keeping it door-free. 

Untitled design (3)-1

Vaulted Ceilings 

Vaulted ceilings are a great way to make a room feel significantly larger than it is. You create an open and airy space by raising the ceiling to align with your roof line.

The structure of your home greatly impacts your ability to vault your ceilings, but most homes have at least a portion of a ceiling that can be vaulted. If you want a more open and brighter space, consider adding skylights to the vaulted area. This will bring in lots of natural light throughout the day. 


Barn Doors

While barn doors aren’t always considered as ways to add architectural interest to your home, we thought they were great to include for those of you looking to spruce up some doorways.

Barn doors are often used as a way to separate a master bedroom and bathroom, to close off a laundry room, or even as bi-passing closet doors. Not only are barn doors stylish, but they can also be very functional for tight spaces. They are perfect for narrow hallways because the door opens by sliding it along the track rather than swinging out into the walking space.  When adding barn doors to your home, you’ll want to consider if you want a new or reclaimed door. Once your door has been selected, you'll need to find hardware suitable for the door size and style. 


A great time to add architectural interest to your home is during a remodeling project. A home remodel allows you to work with a professional to plan out the full style of your home. Your design-build partner will help you determine the best ways to incorporate these ideas into your home in a way that makes them look as though they were a part of the original design. 

Start planning your home remodeling project by downloading the eBook "The Ultimate Step-by-Step Home Renovation Transformation Guide.