by Rachel Lyon, Editorial Director for The House Designers
Do you love the handcrafted touch that millwork automatically adds to a home? Trims, beams, mouldings, and other embellishments installed in the final phase of construction are examples of this beautifying building material, and houses just wouldn't be the same without it. Whether casual or grandiose, millwork is an extension of your architecture’s expression, and you can find just the right pieces to grant your house the perfect personality.
Many homeowners know what they like to see when it comes to these finishing touches, but they have no idea how to actually describe them and are easily confused when it comes time to pick them out. Luckily, Fypon® now offers a Style Selection Tool to help you understand how millwork is best applied to different types of architecture. You can find inspiration as the experts steer you toward decorative pieces that will complement your home’s base style—both inside and out!
The Basic Architectural Styles
There are numerous types of architecture out there, which is why it can be so difficult to decide on the perfect decorative accents. Millwork catalogs are typically immense, with hundreds of pages of pieces that look exceedingly similar to the untrained eye, so it can be stressful for the average homeowner to thumb through the options and choose accents that they have confidence in. Many who build their own homes and are very involved in the process otherwise still defer to their builders’ expertise when it comes to millwork, so Fypon’s® Style Selection Tool is welcomed by their customers and helps to put their catalog into laymen’s terms.
The first step is to choose an architectural style to explore. Several popular options are available, including the often ornate Arts and Crafts and Victorian types, as well as understated Cape Cod and Federal homes. If you have a Georgian, Mediterranean, or farm house, these styles are showcased, too, so it will be easy to draw inspiration. There are also selections made for today’s traditional homes, which have historical designs with updated features that are balanced to create a beautiful, classic yet current feel.
Don’t worry if your exact architecture isn’t represented in the tool. With a good variety of styles already detailed, you can easily make inferences for the rest. For example, choose Arts and Crafts if you’ve got a bungalow, or choose Mediterranean if you have a Spanish or Southwest home. You’ll understand the basic stylistic recommendations all the same.
Interior Millwork Application
The interior design of your home will have a large impact on how it feels to live there. You want to make it both attractive and comfortable. Most people know the basics and expect trim along the baseboards and around windows and doorways, but there is so much more that can and should be considered. Wall and ceiling spaces are canvases, and the millwork you apply to them gives your home character.
The Style Selection Tool suggests different versions of the same general pieces that will dress up each home style in a way that supports its underlying architecture and the background behind it. Classic homes make use of thinner crossheads and pilasters, but you’ll notice that Craftsman houses tend to have thicker, more rustic ones instead. Ceiling beams are common in designs that play up organic elements, but whether they are exposed to show off natural woodgrains and color or painted to match or create contrast on the ceiling is another matter that further accentuates the historical differences in residential architecture.
Exterior Decorative Millwork
Real estate agents and builders will tell you all about curb appeal and that you should take it seriously, but all you really need to know is that you should stay true to the house’s underlying design to bring out its best. In doing so, you’ll create a welcoming façade that you’ll be happy to come home to each day.
When it comes to outfitting the exterior of a house, the materials used are critical to producing the best look. Should pieces be plain or stained a natural wood color? Are stone elements the way to go? Then there are shapes to consider, such as tapered or straight columns. Each type of architecture has its own archetype, and you can do your home justice by knowing which products stay true to it.
Take some time to explore the Style Selection Tool and familiarize yourself with the finer details of home design. The moulded millwork available from Fypon® comes in every conceivable style, so you will surely find durable pieces that look fantastic on your house. If this still seems complicated, you can take advantage of their free takeoff service and let the experts do the hard work for you—just provide construction prints and they’ll make product suggestions for your home specifically!