How to Install Picture Moulding(faux Panel Moulding)

5 Materials
1 Week

Picture moulding adds so much architectural detail and is surprisingly easy to install. My foyer needed a face lift so when my contractor neighbor generously gave me a bundle of chair rail I put it to good use.

Picture moulding add so much architectural interest and detail. It's surprisingly easy to install.

I applied painters tape to the wall to get a feel for the sizes of the boxes I wanted make.

I ultimately decided to go with 3″-3.5″ spaces between my boxes and 4″ at the corners. I thought it would be really difficult to determine the spacing but it wasn’t. I measured the width of my walls then subtracted the 3″ and 4″ spaces, and then divided the remainder by three, giving me the dimension for each of the three boxes. On the walls where I made the middle box bigger I just adjusted those numbers around a little making sure that my total of three boxes was still the same total number. TIP: design-wise you want to do three boxes or more...never two boxes.

The spacing between the boxes has some wiggle room, the top and bottom(horizontal sticks) of the boxes really need to be exact. So I cut all my side pieces(vertical sticks) all at once from a jig. The jig was just a piece of the trim moulding that I placed on top of the subsequent sticks to mark for my cuts. It made the process fast and easy. I didn’t have to measure each and every stick, I just marked from the jig.

 used my handy dandy chop saw to make all the cuts. Fast, easy and accurate. 

I would highly recommend using a brad nail gun. I used my air nailer and compressor. You could also use a battery or electric brad nailer. I wouldn’t do this project if I had to manually nail all this trim…maybe a much smaller project, but not a project of this scope.

TIP: I used 1 1/4″ brad nails…you definitely don’t want to use anything longer than this. 1 1/4″ is just long enough to go through the wood trim and into the drywall but not further. This is very important because panel moulding is randomly nailed to the the walls…meaning not just on the studs. So if your nails are longer than the wood trim and drywall thickness combined, you could accidentally hit a pipe or an electrical cord in the wall. No Bueno.

Overall this panel moulding installation was pretty simple. The caulking and painting took forever. I caulked every piece of moulding even though most of it was tight to the wall, it made the edges looks so much nicer painted.

The biggest impact is down the hallway. These long walls needed something and I really can’t hang art or pictures. Panel moulding is definitely the best solution. It adds interest and impact.

I love the result.

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Mimzy lombardo

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2 of 32 comments
  • Land
    on Jun 3, 2020

    love the moulding and your fancy tools! air compressor? check!

  • Mimzy lombardo
    on Jun 3, 2020

    Thank you. I do a lot of upholstery work so an air compressor is essential. Thanks for the compliment. ;)

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