Due to the fact that a house is nothing more than a structure with walls, ceilings and floors, achieving a unique look for your own place – and setting your house apart from the rest of the pack – comes down to the distinctive accoutrements you select to adorn those blank canvases.
Of course, you can accomplish many goals with paint but one of the easiest ways to dress up a room from top to bottom is by incorporating luxurious moulding and wood wall art.
From classic exposed beams in the ceiling and elegant crown moulding to beautiful bead board, wainscoting and chair railing all the way down to the traditional baseboards and quarter round trim/shoe moulding, there are wood trim designs with you and your personalized style in mind.
Here are a few design ideas and trim tips to help you find your inner millwork master and facilitate your woodworking fashion sense.
Highlighting exposed beams and directing the eye toward the rafters is a subtle way to elevate (literally) the overall sense of a space. Based on how you feature them, you can sway the design style one way or another.
For example, leaving them exposed in their natural state of solid wood can create a rustic or natural setting whereas covering them with decorative pieces of trim can cause the room to exude an air of pollish and affluence.
If neither “rustic” nor “decorative” describes your ideal space, you may opt to adhere to tradition and install a beautiful, classic crown moulding around the room.
Picturesque Picture Framing
One time-honored design technique that can either highlight art on the wall or serve as the artwork itself is known as “picture framing” and as the name suggests, it involves creating a frame out of pieces of trim or moulding.
Create your own art gallery by arranging family photos or hanging pieces of art inside the borders of the individual moulded frames or allow the frames to stand alone by leaving them empty.
One of the keys to this wall application is keeping the lines level and at an even distance between the trim and the edges of the walls and in between the frames themselves.
When there is order and symmetry on the wall itself, you have the ability to create visual interest by pairing the straight lines of the frames with round pieces of furniture or those with structural curves or bends, like this lovely sofa.
And speaking of pairings, coupling the picture frame moulding with wood paneling below lends a sense of grounding to the space without weighing down the room.
Wonders of Wainscoting
Who doesn’t love a sophisticated nook tucked into an otherwise wasted space at the foot of the stairs? This pillowed pad is perfect as a recessed reading nook for flipping through a magazine or bench for putting on shoes and the wainscoting surround adds high-end flair to the overall feel of this creative use of space.
*Tip: Square columns lend a modern and updated look without sacrificing the structural impact of a solid base at the bottom of the landing.
The waist-high wainscoting lining the walls of this well-lit bathroom frames out the classic claw-foot tub and vanity perfectly. This is a great example of improving a potentially “blah” space without overdoing it.
For those looking to pull out all the stops in the ornate décor department, there aren’t many wall applications that can compete with an entire wall of raised wood paneling!
*Tip: Utilize the same color for the background wall and the raised trim to create a clean and seamless look or paint the raised panels in a different color to create contrast.
On the subject of painting your moulding, who says white is your only option?
There are many ways to pull off an unconventional color choice and one of them is to paint all of the trim and coordinating moulding or panels the same color.
And don’t forget about your windows: adding decorative trim to your casement windows not only creates a more impressive window as a whole but it also provides a means for the window to stand out all on its own where it might otherwise get swallowed up by the scope of an entire wall.
What are some of the high-end moulding designs that you have seen that stood out for their unique shape or aesthetic appeal?
This is a guest article by Angelo DiGangi, a Home Depot sales associate in the Chicago suburbs and writes on millworks and doors for the Home Depot website. Angelo’s interests range from providing tips on molding and wainscoting to windows and window treatments.