Most of the time, I’m a little anti - moulding around here.
The reason why is because builders tend to add wood mouldings and excessive trimwork just to impress buyers. Oftentimes in this area, they’ll add them to Mediterranean or Tuscan style houses and just about any suburban style home even when they might not be appropriately designed, scaled, or detailed.
I mean, it’s nice to have some, especially in certain style homes, like Georgian, Craftsman, etc. Heavy mouldings are called for in those styles. However, a giant dentil crown moulding isn’t necessary or warranted in a home with plaster walls and stucco on the exterior.
Moulding transitions Need To Be Addressed When Selecting Mouldings
They also tend to not think through the transitions or the appropriate scale. As most buyers want an open plan house, you have to think through how mouldings will stop and start in all these open areas.
When something like this happens, there is just nothing clumsier, IMO.
Scale of mouldings and trimwork is often inappropriate
Appropriate scale can also be an issue. In my own builder grade, suburban brick home, we had 7” crown mouldings with a 3” baseboard. Ick. I couldn’t wait to balance that out by adding in a taller baseboard.
Yes, I’ve written a post about inappropriate mouldings and weird transitions HERE.
I do, however, add mouldings in remodels, and I have two projects where I have added them recently where I think they are most successful.
Mouldings at front door with adjacent windows
In this project, the front door and adjacent window openings all lined up (more or less), but because the windows had no trim it looked off balance. We also wanted give this door added importance and just tie all these openings together, so we added trim surrounding all the openings.
Looks much better, no?
Adding mouldings to enhance this dining room’s envelope
In this dining room in a traditional style home, the mouldings are really small. With 8’ ceilings, that’s okay, but I felt like the door trim and opening could be enhanced by adding some detail and mouldings there to make it appear more substantial.
I also want to paint it a vibrant color, move the rug in another room, add black lamp shades and hang an interesting light fixture. :-)
Add mouldings at kitchen sink window
I tend to add moulding in kitchens at the sink windows, so that tile transitions nicely and that little gap between the upper cabinet and the window is covered and not left with a skinny strip of painted sheetrock.
That just looks unfinished to me and creates awkward transitions. It’s not intentional or purposeful design.
Here’s a pic that was uploaded to my site by a reader in the comments on another post, where I advised her to frame out the windows like we did in this similarly styled project, below.
I suggested the wood trim be wide enough to meet in the corner and cover the sheetrock area between the windows and the upper cabinets.
Anything can be done well or badly. Even mouldings!
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