In case you're unfamiliar with the term, coffers are sunken panels in the ceiling, usually in the shape of a grid. The design detail dates back at least to ancient Rome, if not farther. You can even see them adorning the ceiling of the Pantheon.
Coffers were originally used as a structural element, working as support beams for the building.
Today, on the other hand, most paneled ceilings are strictly decorative, and do not actually play a role in the structural makeup of the home.
We saw coffers all over the place in our roundup of Houzz Readers' Favorite Kitchens, including the one shown here.
And here's a closeup of that same porch. I love how they included a skylight in several of the squares.
Another outdoor installation.
White, rectangular-shaped coffers are probably the most popular rendition of the style.
But different shapes and colors give the detail a more personalized note. Choose a bright shade and you're sure to draw the eyes upwards.
This kitchen combines square coffers with a beadboard background for even more interest overhead.
Whether grand and detailed...
... Or simple and subtle, coffers give a ceiling the extra oomph it deserves.