Building & Renovating

Unique Ways to Design Around Beams and Columns

Style your way around awkward spots in your home with these ideas

Photography: Paolo Feliciano and Miguel Nacancieno (Main Photo)

Columns bear the weight of a building and ensure its structural integrity. However, when it comes to interior design, not all columns are welcome elements in a space. At times, they can overwhelm the entire room as opposed to being just a part of the whole picture. In cases where the column is an obstruction, architect Angelo Siochi shares tips on how to work around it:  

1. Conceal it. 

"By building, say, cabinetry around a column, you are able to hide it and add to its functionality at the same time." If you have enough space, you can also conceal a series of columns with a false wall. 

2. Highlight it. 

"You can also make a bold statement by highlighting the column and treating it as an accent for the space. Ideas range from painting it with an accent color, covering it up with textured material (such as decorative plaster, stone, brick, or even plants), or turning it into a mini art gallery."

3. Camouflage it. 

"Cover each side of a column with full length mirrors, and you instantly have more of the space and less of the column. You may also apply nosing to the corners of the column that aren't connected to any walls in order to soften the edges and create a seamless overall look." 

This snippet originally appeared in the May 2017 issue of Real Living Magazine. 

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