One of the unique ways to transform the look of a room is to add trim moldings, which can create a distinctive, elegant effect. While usually characterized as a decorative extension of a room’s baseboards, door casing and window trim, moldings also include chair rails, wainscoting, crown moldings and other non-structural ornamentation. Depending on the size and height of a room, they are often painted in a color that is contrasting yet complementary to a room’s walls, ceiling or overall decor. When choosing moldings, it’s important to consider their proportion relative to the room’s dimensions.

For example, crown moldings can help lift the eye to create a sense of elevated height, but the opposite effect can occur if oversized trim is attached to a low ceiling, especially if a room has more than the typical four corners. Similarly, a circular ceiling molding or medallion can add a sense of elegance to a hanging fixture such as a chandelier, but it should also contribute to the room’s balance and proportion. Sometimes wall molding can accentuate a sense of intimacy in a smaller room by acting like a picture frame, drawing the eye towards a cozy chair or sofa. Ideally, take the time to experiment with temporarily positioned pieces, before investing in a permanent installation.