The interior designer’s trick that looks like new architecture

HOW MANY TIMES do you think about the filling? Chances are, rarely. Probably because white wood paneling is the default, timeless yet tedious. Colorful and contrasting joinery, on the other hand, is the swizzle that transforms interiors with a brushstroke, design professionals say. Swap the white trim for black, and voila, a living room of sophistication. “The trim makes the space feel completely decorated,” said New York interior designer Tara McCauley, who upgraded her apartment by highlighting the pale aqua walls with teal baseboards. Philadelphia interior designer Glenna Stone pulls color from art trim, a rug or a pillow for cohesiveness — a design tactic she’s adopted in about 20% of his plans this year. Ms. Stone sees contrasting trim as a way to set your interior apart from the rest of the world. “It adds a touch of the unexpected,” she said.

Exceptional finishes have an illustrious history – George Washington’s Virginia quarters, Mount Vernon, is a famous example. “In 18th-century America, fittings indicated that you could afford a higher level of craftsmanship,” said Kirsten Moffitt, materials analyst for the Department of Conservation at the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation in Williamsburg, Va. . The color on the picture rails, paneling and cornices caught the eye. to woodwork and wallpaper, Ms. Moffitt said. It has enhanced an interior and distinguished a prestigious living room from smaller, utilitarian rooms.

“The pendulum is swinging back,” Ms Moffitt said. Hierarchy and separation replace all-white open plans whose architecture does not delineate function, and highly visible woodwork plays a part.

Here, seven trim trends that will add definition, depth and fanfare to your interiors.

Marc Goldberg, founder of Interiors Matter in Long Valley, NJ, chose high-gloss black for this trim. “It literally sparkles,” he said.


Mark Goldberg

Increase luster

Unlike semi-gloss, which is the standard finish for painted architectural woodwork, gloss adds drama. “It’s that glossy, lacquered finish that puts it on top,” said interior designer Marc Goldberg, who used glossy jet-black pigment against snowy matte walls in a Long Valley, NJ home. Black-and-white photos stacked in black frames draw the eye to the elegant ceiling border, said Mr. Goldberg, founder of local design firm Interiors Matter. He chose to soften the high contrast of the window frames, also in glossy ebony, with silver-gray linen curtains.

To introduce an adjacent small office painted teal, Nashville interior designer Stephanie Sabbe styled a front door in the same dusty blue-green.


Lisa Petroleum

Next Room Herald

“Framing can either accentuate a threshold or hide it,” said Liza Curtiss, manager of Le Whit in Brooklyn, NY Trim painted the same color as an adjacent room disappears. In a hallway upholstered in Clarence House’s Tibetan Tiger in black and jade, the designer painted the door leading to a living room in obsidian hues a recessive black. Similarly, in a kitchen clad in a leafy yellow Morris & Co. pattern, Nashville interior designer Stephanie Sabbe described both a doorway to a small office (and the office itself). same) of a contrasting dusty teal. “What you see is the inside, like taking a bite out of an apple,” Ms Sabbe said.

Philadelphia interior designer Glenna Stone matched the crown molding of a 1750s home with creamy antique documents hung as artwork.


Rebecca McAlpin

Echo the decor

In a 1750s house, Mrs. Stone hung outdated documents while art then tinted the trim a creamy shade that matched the artifacts. “It was a way to bring the room together but not to attract [too much] careful,” she said. In love with a pattern on the cover of a dining room chair, Caroline Brackett, an interior designer in Greenville, SC, chose a dusty blue found in the velvet print to highlight the millwork, doors, the moldings and paneling of the room. “The pretty color makes the eye travel around the room,” she said.

In Ms. Vero’s study, Ms. Salvesen coated all of the architectural woodwork the same blue “for as much continuity as possible”.


Simon Brown

Simplify the Complex

To bring continuity and calm to this room, interior designer Nicole Salvesen, of Salvesen Graham in London, has worn a sparkling blue on a fireplace mantle, paneling, built-in shelving and windows. “This piece is a study – you don’t want to create too many different contrasts,” she said of the space in Surrey, England, home of Claire Vero, founder of the skincare company Aurelia London skin. The monochrome unifies and simplifies the ornate millwork, which includes details such as inlaid panels and spiral pilasters.

Seattle designer Lisa Staton has reduced the formality of craftsman-style details with mid-century modern furniture and plush sheepskin.


Haris Kenjar

go with the grain

One of Seattle interior designer Lisa Staton’s clients asked her to preserve chocolate-colored fir in window frames and baseboards in a 1920s Craftsman-style family home. nod to the historicism of the original owner, a prominent judge. As an antidote to “bold and masculine” floor moldings and coved windows, Ms Staton limited the palette to whites, beiges and blacks and introduced an interior design rich in mid-century curves and plush sheepskin plaids . To modernize a period house, she says, “it’s important not to match the [furniture to the] house era.

In his East Hampton, NY home, Dan Scotti used a blue-gray 50% darker than the walls.


shade degrees

Try tone on tone

Decor without depth can feel flat, cold and uninspired, says interior designer Dan Scotti. He noted that in his guest bedroom in East Hampton, NY, the grey-blue trim is 50% darker than the chalky lime paint on the walls. “Look carefully at a piece of driftwood,” he said. “It includes different shades of soft gray, with bluish undertones.” He added that the rich color on the window frames allows for better viewing. “The white will stop the eye. The dark gray allows your eye to travel through the glass to the landscape,” he said.

The malachite green wood paneling resists the busy and playful wallpaper in Mrs. Vero’s bathroom. “It creates a balance,” said Ms. Salvesen, the designer.


Simon Brown

Play with the wallpaper

In the main shower room of Ms Vero’s house in Surrey, Ms Salvesen highlighted the door and window frames, as well as the paneling, in a bold green to prevent the equally fiery corrugated wallpaper in the toilet to become oppressive and exuberant. “No element screams,” she said of the visual balance. Surprisingly, Ms. Salvesen chose a leafy hue not found in multicolored paper. “That green isn’t exact, it’s another layer of the piece,” she explained. “If it was an exact match, it would have looked too graphic.” With more subdued wallpaper, she added, the carpentry trick can lighten the mood: “All-over wallpaper gives a room a formal look, but having a colorful border makes it less suffocating.”


What’s your favorite architectural molding trend? Join the conversation below.


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Betty K. Park