Creating French Cove and Crown Molding
Recently, Sally and I have had the opportunity to work on a project that took several years to complete which gave us great experience developing pricing/estimates for multiple French architectural trim options comparing wood to plaster matching the wood profiles to “can you be clever?” A great example is the crown molding in the project. The following examples are from the living room/dining room, foyer, family room and master bed room.
Let’s start with several images of crown molding from our Paris trip we showed the client to which they said, “Yes, I love it!”
Crown with decorative onlay in an Haussmann Style apartment.
Even with many layers of paint, the lamb’s tongue shines thru.
French cove moldings. This is in an apartment we visited on the Left Bank.
In the Grange showroom on the Right Bank. Beginning to see similarities?
The roots of these coves? Let’s look at Chateau Vaux Le Vicomte, built in the mid 1600’s.
Jumping into the time machine, we arrive back at our job site and the cost comparisons in which we were involved.
In the living room/dining room and master bedroom, we selected a two piece White River crown with decorative onlay from their Mon Reale Collection. Starting with the Master Bedroom. (Please excuse the photographs. They were taken during construction)
And the living room.
Almost done… Awaiting delivery of antique sconces from Trianon Antiques. Dining room is to the left, same crown.
As a two part molding for White River molding the installed price was about $45/lineal foot. In plaster, the price was about 3.5 times as much per lineal foot. As an aside, the gas fire places in the master bedroom and living room are from Town and Country. Wonderfully engineered “frameless” design, they generate great flames with minimal heat output. The master bedroom mantel is Francois & Co. The living room is from Chesneys. Both have fab customer service, engineers and shop drawings. The floor is a premium grade 7″ walnut plank floor.
In the foyer, a large 4 piece cove molding was created from White River trim to enhance the height of the room.
A close up detail…
This cost about $65/lineal foot installed. In plaster, we were looking at costs of three times as much.
The family room was much less formal and less costly. Looks remarkably similar to the Grange showroom crown…
It is a three piece molding made from Forester Molding, installing at just under $20 per lineal foot. For comparison in plaster the molding cost about three times as much.
Then there were the “can you be clever” rooms – the children’s rooms. There we were able to keep the installed cost down to under $15/lineal foot by using Forester trim. Simple crown and a small piece of applied trim a few inches below the crown. The client wanted the second piece of trim on the wall so that the overall effect would appear larger.
By way of contrast, we recently designed a crown on another project using separate pieces of trim in which the second piece of trim was applied to the ceiling. The effect being the crown reaches our on to the ceiling. Much more if a cove effect, without the expense of a true cove. Far more effect in my opinion.
Over the past 12 months, Sally and I have learned it is possible to create delightful French style crown molding across a broad range of price points. It’s a very satisfying feeling.
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