One of the primary characteristics distinguishing a pretty room from a basic box is the attention to molding. Interior moldings provide attitude as well as architectural interest. An easy way to upgrade a room is to beef up the moldings, adding width, depth and height to the trim. Far from closing a room in, it actually adds depth to the walls, especially if it’s painted the same colour as the walls for a unified look.
Started from the Bottom
Baseboards are the visual foundation for a room, like a line drawn under everything else that goes into the room. If you’re working in a room that has hardwood floors – think about adding shoe molding for a dramatic detail.
Openings in walls without doors are framed with woodwork called “casing”. This trim, which wraps from one side of the wall to the other, defines the opening and protects the wall surface from scratches. A cased opening suggests separation between two rooms without interrupting flow.
Regardless of what style profile you opt for, avoid moldings that are too flat against the wall – they can look cheap.
Wainscoting typically covers the lower three or four feet of an interior wall. It is a broader term referring to decorative paneling used as a wall accent, decoration, and to prevent/disguise damage to walls. The type of panel used determines the name of the wainscoting and different styles include raised panel wainscoting, flat panel wainscoting, board and batten, and the ever-popular beadboard most commonly found in bathrooms.
Crown molding can add architecture to a room that has little, and it draws the eye upwards in much the same way curtains hung at ceiling height can. A simple room can become so much more dynamic with crown and base molding. By emphasizing the base and the ceiling, the end result has far more character.
While white is the most obvious choice for trim, the task of choosing the perfect shade can be daunting. There are literally 100’s of shades of white, and while white is the most common, it certainly isn’t your only option for trim. To add a modern feel to the sometimes overwhelming feel of wood wainscoting and trim, you could opt to paint the walls and trim the same colour. This creates the illusion of a larger space, while maintaining the texture and depth of the woodwork.