After you've considered some of the different designs you can implement to turn your basement into a comfortable and entertaining space, it is time to get down to specifics and practicalities, such as basement ceiling ideas. The ceiling is the third dimension of your space, and is often neglected by homeowners because, well, most people don't look up all that much. But the fact is that the color you use, as well as the manner in which lighting is installed in the ceiling, is going to be the thing that decides whether your basement ever stops being a cave and becomes a room. As with any matter of interior decor, a little time spent searching online will reveal that there are thousands upon thousands of basement ceiling ideas at your fingertips; all you need to do is start looking, comparing options, and developing your own ideas. Many of the more popular basement ceiling ideas incorporate the use of a drop ceiling, which comes in many different styles and is easy to install - in fact, it's so simple that you might just as well take on the task of installing it as a DIY project. You might also take a look at suspended ceilings, which are similarly simple to install and can offer an even greater degree of acoustic insulation. Suspended ceilings are made up of tiles that attach to a metal grid, a 3-dimensional frame that's light and easy to handle.
Coffered ceilings, on the other hand, are very similar in technical terms to suspended ceilings, but differ from them in being decorated with ornate recessed panels, offering a more corporate appearance, ideal for those who plan to turn their basement into a home office or formal study. The drawback of plain old suspended ceilings, on the other hand, lies in the industrial look they tend to give a room, which can be great if you're into Manhattan-style architecture and not-so-great if your house has been designed to look like a Tuscan villa. For practical purposes, they're great, as one can quickly access any wires pipes they conceal by snapping away segments of the ceiling. Most building codes require at least 90 inches of headroom for a finished basement, so in the event that your basement has a low ceiling, you have two options - either dig up the floor, or go for drywall.
The wonderful thing about drywall is its unique versatility - unlike prefabricated ceiling panels, once you've installed drywall, you can paint it in any color you like, meaning that you can realize the most whacky of your basement ceiling ideas, be they painting patterns or glow in the dark stars on your ceiling. On the other hand, drywall is quite a bit more complicated than ceiling panels when it comes to installation, and the time it takes to complete the installation of drywalling could span into months (as opposed to the mere weeks that ceiling panel installation is likely to call for). Remember when painting that the color you choose will have a very powerful impact on the atmosphere of the room. It's ideal to go for light colors, such as eggshell, peach or baby blue, as warm, dark colors, such as red or brown, will lend the entire space an oppressive feel - something claustrophobics really won't appreciate when they're already in a confined space underground.
Another doozey on the list of basement ceiling ideas is to install mirrors on the ceiling, which can do wonders for a low, small space, lending itself to the illusion of a much bigger room. This can also intensify your lighting, giving it an ambient quality where it might otherwise have brought about stark shadows. Indirect lighting directed at the walls can reflect light onto the ceiling, making it appear higher in the process. In the event that your basement ceiling isn't the access point wires or ductwork, you can simply paint it. Obviously this is going to result in a somewhat unfinished look that won't look as modern or chic as the impression you'd achieve with drywall or drop ceilings. It is, however, a functional solution if you're short on cash, and can go quite well if you're aiming for a space with a slightly gritty, rustic appearance.