If you want the look of a metal scroll ceiling medallion but don’t want to pay the price, this DIY ceiling medallion tutorial will teach you how to make one at a fraction of the cost.
I love decorating ceilings! I figure, why decorate the whole room and leave the fifth wall blank (that’s the ceiling)? So I’ve done a lot of DIY ceiling projects like this DIY faux tin ceiling and this plaid ceiling over the years. This DIY lace ceiling medallion is another way to add interest that will also make your light fixture or chandelier stand out.
I have a chandelier in my home office / den that I love.
The only issue I have with it is that the part which connects the light fixture to the ceiling doesn’t look like much. I don’t know why they always make such small bases for chandeliers like this!
Anyhow, the easy way to fix this problem is to install a ceiling medallion.
Plus I think all chandeliers look better with a ceiling medallion. It just helps to make them feel like they were meant to be installed in that spot.
So having decided that I needed a ceiling medallion, there was one more problem. This chandelier is a semi-flush mount (the ceilings in this room are only 8′ high so the lighting needs to be close to the ceiling).
That means the medallion can’t be very thick and it needs to be wide enough that you can see it around the edges of the light fixture.
So when I was making over my home office/den, I decided to remedy the situation by finding a ceiling medallion that would work.
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I found a scrolled ceiling medallion* that I thought was the perfect solution.
It is made of a gold-colored metal, and I love the scroll pattern. Both go very well with the wallpaper in my den.
Then I looked at the price and decided maybe it wasn’t the perfect solution after all!
As usually happens when I find something I like but don’t want to spend the money, I decided to make my own.
Since I couldn’t find a metal sheet that was thin enough for my Cricut machine to cut, I went with mat board (the thin cardboard that is usually used for the mat around pictures in picture frames) and some gold spray paint. A very economical solution!
Keep reading to get all the details on how to create a DIY ceiling medallion.
What You Need
The Ceiling Medallion Pattern
You’ll need the pattern to cut the ceiling medallion.
If you already receive our decorating newsletter, you can get the pattern from our resource library (find the password at the bottom of any of our recent emails).
If you aren’t a member, sign up for my weekly decorating newsletter using the form below to get access to the file.
- Mat board* or other thin cardboard that is at least 12″ x 12″ in size
- Metallic gold spray paint*
- 3/4″ brass nails*
- Scotch tape*
- (optional) Mat Board Cutter*
For Manual Cutting
For Automated Cutting
- Cricut Explore Air 2* or other die cutting machine that will let you cut your pattern from an image. Since Cricut has come out with a new machine, the Explore Air 2’s are usually on sale so they are a pretty good deal these days!
- Strong grip mat*
- Cricut Explore deep cut blade*
Cut the Lace DIY Ceiling Medallion Pattern
I think ceiling medallions should be at least as wide around as the chandelier that they hang over.
To do this, my DIY ceiling medallion needed to be about 24″ across.
Since most die-cutting machines (like the Cricut Explore Air 2*) and printers can’t make patterns that big, I divided it into 4 quarters.
If you want to make one of these for yourself, you can get the free pattern above.
Option 1: Cutting The Medallion Pattern Manually
You can cut this manually if you have a lot of patience and are good with a utility knife. (The Cricut makes it a lot easier.)
1. Print out the image (from above) 4 times. If you are trying to make a larger version of the medallion than your printer can handle, try taking it to a store that offers print services like Staples, Office Depot or FedEx. They can print it the size that you need.
2. Lay down your mat board with the rough side facing up. Make sure it is on something that you can cut on.
3. Spray the mat board with adhesive. This will prevent the paper from moving while you’re cutting it.
4. Position the printed papers on top of the board so they line up properly. Cut off any excess paper. The pattern should look like this.
5. Then carefully trace the lines with the utility knife.
If you find it awkward to work with such a big piece of board, you can cut it in half (or even quarters) and then put them together when you install it. Having the pieces separated also means you can install the medallion without taking down the light fixture.
Option 2: Cut The Medallion Using A Cricut (or Silhouette) Machine
1. Start by cutting the mat board* into 12″ x 12″ squares. I used a mat cutter* to do this which makes the job really easy…but you could also use a utility knife and a straight edge to cut the mat to size.
2. Stick the mat board to the strong grip cutting mat*. You really do need the strong grip mat to keep the material from moving while it is being cut.
3. Install the deep cut blade* in your machine.
4. Import the image from above into the Cricut design space app or whatever application your die-cutting machine uses.
5. Re-size the image to 11 1/2″ x 11 1/2″ (which is about as big as the Cricut Explore can cut).
6. Then you’re all ready to start cutting! I found that it needs a fairly slow cutting speed and 3 to 4 repeats to cut all the way through cleanly.
7. When it finished cutting, I used a spatula* to remove the cardboard from the cutting mat without ripping it.
You will end up with one quarter of the pattern.
8. Repeat the same cutting pattern 3 more times until you have made all 4 quarters.
Paint The DIY Ceiling Medallion
Spray paint the ceiling medallion quarters with gold spray paint.
If you cut the medallion manually, you’ll want to paint the side that does not have the paper stuck to it.
I used this Rust-Oleum spray paint*.
Install the Medallion
If you cut the pattern manually, in one big piece, you can skip most of these steps. You will need to take the light fixture down, nail the ceiling medallion up and then replace the light fixture. If you don’t want to do that, you can cut the medallion in half and install it in 2 pieces.
1. For the first step, lay out the medallion pieces upside down to identify the match points.
2. Tape 3 of the quarters together at the match points. This is just temporary to make sure they stay lined up properly.
3. If the chandelier has already been installed, you will probably need to loosen the canopy so that the medallion can slide underneath.
Medallions are much easier to install before the light fixture is up there! But since we cut this in quarters, it is possible to install the medallion without taking the whole light fixture down.
4. Use 3/4″ brass nails* to nail the 3 taped parts of the medallion to the ceiling. Make sure that each quarter of the medallion has at least 2 nails (one on each side). If your ceiling is smooth, you might also be able to glue it.
5. Add the 4th medallion quarter to the ceiling using the brass nails.
6. Add nails to any parts of the medallion that are not flush against the ceiling. Because my ceiling was not smooth, I had to add quite a few extra nails to get the look I wanted.
7. Put the canopy back up (if you had to loosen it above) and your DIY ceiling medallion is done!
The Finished Look
I love the way my DIY ceiling medallion looks above my chandelier.
It was just the finishing touch that my den ceiling needed! And the whole project cost less than $20. Even if I had to buy a Cricut machine (especially now that they are on sale for the lowest price I have ever seen!), it would cost less than the store-bought ceiling medallion does.
Looking for some other things to make with your Cricut? Check out our list of Cricut home decor projects.
Have comments or questions about our DIY lace ceiling medallion? Tell us in the section below.
This post was originally published on November 30, 2015 but was updated with new content on June 12, 2021.