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Tricks to DIY Crown Molding

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2 Days

Install crown like a pro with these 8 tricks to DIY crown molding!

Hey y’all! I am excited to finally share our adventures in crown molding! I know, we sure took our sweet time finishing up this DIY project, but here we are ready to share 8 tricks to DIY crown molding.
tricks to diy crown molding
In my humble opinion, crown molding is an elegant addition to any room.  It is a finishing touch that completes the look and feel of a space like a pearl necklace on a chic outfit.  Crown molding is also the easiest way to add architectural interest to a room without a fully involved construction project.

Installing crown molding though can be seriously tricky! TRICKY! TRICKY! TRICKY! Thanks Run-DMC for that ear worm.

You need to take your time measuring (check it at least twice), buy some extra length of crown for mistakes, and be conscientious about your corner cuts.  But don’t feel overwhelmed, S. and I are here to help you with your DIY crown molding project! Ok mainly S. since he is the carpenter, handy-man, all-around Mr. Fix-it! 
tricks to diy crown molding
No. 1 Create your own elaborate crown molding profile
If you have been pondering the installation of crown molding, you know that the more elaborate the millwork the more expensive the molding.  But there is a cheaper, DIY to help you achieve the look of ornamental crown molding with less expense by using multiple pieces of molding, including baseboard to get the look.  S. and I used 3 pieces of molding: 2 strips of baseboard (1 on the ceiling and 1 on the wall) with a piece of crown molding in the middle.

The pros call this a build-up!
tricks to diy crown molding
No. 2 Get the crown profile design right
Don’t put the cornice and base fully into the corner, instead pull them away an inch or so. This helped us create the right profile look for the crown molding overall.  Depending on the type of trim you use, you may need to vary one side more than the other.  Play around with small pieces of the trim to see what looks best.
tricks to diy crown molding
No. 3 Grab a helping hand or if none are around, make your own support
When putting up your DIY crown molding it really is best to have a second pair of hands to help hold the trim up.  If you are like S. and you don’t have patience for your lovely wife to stop what she is doing to come help, you make your own support out of 2 x 4s. Looks like you can also buy this handy support from Rockler, if you don’t want to DIY your own.
tricks to diy crown molding
No. 4 Pre-drill holes for anchors
The wall base should be installed first, and you must put your nails into the studs.  Then to install the cornice (that’s the baseboard trim for the ceiling) you will need to use anchors and screws if the floor joists don’t run in the right direction or you cannot nail into them.  
tricks to diy crown molding
There are no studs like in the wall, so anchors will secure your cornice molding.  S. temporarily supported the baseboard on the ceiling and pre-drilled the holes then he took it down and inserted the anchors.  Use a sheet rock screw so that they are flush.

No. 5 Hide the screws
Be sure you install the anchors and screws far enough back on the cornice that the third piece of crown will hide them.  This is important because even with trick No. 8 screw heads are hard to cover up!
tricks to diy crown molding
No. 6 Use a Kreg Crown-Pro Jig
According to S., this is the “be all, end all” tool for cutting crown molding corners.  You will need to measure the angle of your crown trim and the corners of your room with the jig’s protractor then set the jig to that angle. Beyond that I really didn’t understand what he was talking about, but I've got a great video over on the blog!

Head on over to penderandpeony.com to see it and the rest of the 8 tricks to DIY crown molding plus I've got a full materials list for the project there!
tricks to diy crown molding
We are just thrilled with how our dining room is coming together. The crown molding really elevated the look and made this room more formal. Happy DIYing!

Suggested materials:

  • Baseboard  (Lowes)
  • Crown  (Lowes)
  • Kreg Pro-Crown Jig  (Lowes)
See all materials

Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!


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