Understanding Chair Moulding and How to Install It

April 11, 2022

By: The Finished Space

One of the best ways to add a subtle touch of luxury and heighten the dynamics of a room is to add moulding. It’s a sophisticated design element that makes a room feel complete. Fortunately, there are many ways to use moulding to elevate your design.

For instance, you can install crown moulding along the ceiling or create tall baseboards with a delicate trim layer. Likewise, you can add texture to door frames and window frames, or create intricate paneling along the entire length of your home. It’s important to remember that moulding isn’t an overt decorative element.

In fact, some of the most exciting and high-end uses of trim and moulding are the simplest. That’s certainly the case with chair moulding, which is one of the most popular types of moulding on the market.

Understanding Chair Moulding

Chair moulding is a horizontal strip of moulding or trim used to create a chair rail. A chair rail is a popular design element often used in classical and modern home development and design. It’s one of the few design elements with both an aesthetic and a practical purpose.

Metrie Complete - Board & Batten Accent Wall - Light Blue

Aesthetically, chair rails bring a room together by creating a sense of harmony. They’re used to essentially cut the wall into separate sections, giving you the ability to add texture or multiple tones and colors. It’s simply a lot more interesting to look at a wall with a chair rail than a plain wall with no decorative elements.

In a practical sense, chair rails are used to protect the wall from moving furniture. That’s why chair moulding is installed at chair height. So, when you pull a chair back against the wall, it will hit the chair moulding first, thus preventing any potential damage to the wall.

This type of moulding traces back to Ancient Greece. At the time, it was used to separate the wall into eye-pleasing segments. However, it started being used as a protective barrier in the 19th century.

How to Install Chair Moulding

Home improvement projects can be overwhelming if you aren’t familiar with them. Thankfully, installing chair moulding is incredibly straightforward, making it a project almost anyone can tackle, from inexperienced DIYers to professional contractors.

Option M - New Traditional - Dining Room - Chair Rail - 2022

Simply follow these steps to install a chair rail in your home:

1. Identify the Style and Select the Material

It all starts with choosing the chair rail moulding that is right for you. With most moulding types, you have many customization options available to you, and the same goes for chair rails.

You can customize the height, width, depth, styles and patterns, colors, and more. Whatever you decide, choose the option that best fits your design aesthetic and complements the other design elements in your home. A chair rail is meant to be a finishing touch that elevates the overall look, so try not to overthink it!

2. Paint and Wallpaper the Wall Prior to Chair Moulding Installation

Before you start installing the moulding, you should completely paint and wallpaper the wall. It would be incredibly challenging to paint and install wallpaper after the moulding has been installed, so you’ll want to ensure it’s completely done before you start.

3. Take Your Measurements

Moulding Saw

Source: The Gold Hive

Before you purchase your supplies, you need to take measurements of the length of your walls. These measurements will help you order the correct number of supplies. And as a pro tip, remember to purchase a little more than you need, just in case you need extra.

4. Find the Studs

Stud Finding Hand Close Up

Source: The Gold Hive

After you have the supplies in hand, it’s time to find and mark your studs using a stud finder. These will help you during the installation process because it’s where you’ll nail the moulding into the wall. Studs serve as an anchor, allowing you to install moulding and other decorative elements securely.

5. Cut the Material to the Measurements

Once you have all the supplies, it’s time to cut your material. Use a miter saw or something similar to cut your pieces to fit the measurements you collected above.

6. Prime and Paint the Material After Cutting and Before Installation

Before you install the moulding, you should prime and paint everything. Like the walls, it would be incredibly challenging to do this post-installation.

7. Level and Install

Once everything has dried, it’s time to begin the installation. Attach the chair moulding and any other elements you’ve decided to install. Remember to take your time, keep everything level and straight, and have some fun with it!

For Blog Only - Sarah Gibson, of Room For Tuesday - Picture Moulding Close Up

Sarah Gibson

Find the Best Chair Moulding Options and Design Ideas with Metrie

At Metrie, we pride ourselves on offering top-of-the-line moulding products and inspiration from the best designers worldwide. So, check out our vast collection of chair moulding options today.

If you’re interested in installing moulding and trim in your home, but aren’t sure how to get started, check out Option {M} today. It’s a design tool that pairs popular design trends with moulding styles, so you never have to worry about choosing the wrong kind.