paint color vers: ceiling height
I have some new rooms with a ceiling height of just under 7ft.
I had a friend tell me that with a low ceiling height that if I paint the ceiling about 1/3 the color of the walls that the ceiling height won't be as noticeable. That would be instead of just painting with ceiling paint which is pretty much white.
Your friend is right - to create an illusion of a higher ceiling (or at least not to emphasize the "low-ness" of it), you want to reduce the contrast between the walls and ceiling. 1/3 of wall color would work great to help with that.
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