Millwork: In Praise of Molding & Other Detail
Design: Stephen and Kerry Fuller; Image: Blayne Beacham on Cote de Texas
I’ve always had a strong affinity for precise detail work. That’s true whether I’m enjoying a great actor’s performance on screen or I’m drinking in amazing architecture during a home tour event. So when I see particularly stunning molding, millwork, or other detail in an interior, I’m always captivated.
Merriam-Webster online defines millwork as “woodwork (as doors, sashes, or trim) manufactured at a mill.” Okay, sure. That works fine as a way to illuminate the facts of the term—which, by the way, I felt was necessary at this point in case anyone reading this was wondering “what the heck is millwork?” - but truly wonderful millwork is more than woodwork manufactured at a mill; it’s the kind of detail that can elevate a space and make it unforgettable.
This first image, for example, shows what in most homes would be a simple passage from one room into another. Here, it has been transformed into what seems to me as an experience: a real sense of transitioning from one space into the expansive kitchen beyond. All from the artistic application of molding.
Design and Image: MA Allen Interiors
Here’s a type of wall detail that tends to get overlooked: wainscoting. But in this instance, the skillful use of simple geometry and woodwork has created a memorable space.
Design and Image: Nico van der Meulen Architects
All of these types of molding and detail tend to find its way into very traditional spaces. It is, after all, a timeworn practice for enhancing the look of interiors. But there’s nothing that says beautiful wood detail has to be traditional; one look at this undulating wood wall and you can see the impact millwork has in even the most contemporary of homes.
Design and Image: Guillaume Terver & Christophe Delcourt
Here’s another great example of contemporary millwork used in a bedroom to create an organizational effect. Again, the sense of fine detailed work helps to make something very special.
Has millwork, molding and other detail helped elevate your home?