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Moulding and Millwork Terminology

Here is a brief description of some commonly used moulding and millwork terms

Astragals Attached to one pair of doors to keep the other from swinging through the opening. Also used for decorative purposes such as on the edge of shelves.

Back Bands A rabbeted moulding used to surround the outside edge of casing.
Base Caps A decorative member installed flush against the wall and the top of an S4S baseboard. Also used as a versatile panel moulding.
Base Mouldings Applied where the floor and walls meet, forming a visual foundation. Protects walls from kicks, bumps, furniture, etc. Base may be referred to as one, two, or three member base. Shoe and base cap are used to conceal uneven floor and wall junctures as well as hide the ½” expansion joint which should be left around the entire perimeter of the wood floor (flooring should not be installed so that it butts against the walls).
Base Shoes Applied where the base moulding meets the floor. Protects the base from damage. Also conceals uneven lines or cracks where the base meets the floor.
Battens A symmetrical pattern used to conceal the line where two parallel boards or panels meet.
Beds Used where walls and ceiling meet. Either sprung or plain.
Casing Used to trim inside and outside door and window openings.
Chair Rails Interior moulding applied about one-third up from the floor, parallel to base moulding and encircling the room. Originally used to prevent chairs from marring walls, today they are used as a key decorative detail in traditional and colonial designs.
Chamfer Strip Used in highway and dam construction forms making a chamfered edge at concrete corners. Also used where kitchen cabinet tops meet the wall. Also used as a linoleum cove, under linoleum where it extends up the wall.
Corner Guards An outside corner guard is used to protect corners or to cover ragged edges where wall covering and painted surfaces meet at an outside corner.
Coves Used at corners, specifically as a ceiling cornice. Small coves may be used as an inside corner guard. Concave profile.
Crowns Used where walls and ceiling meet. Also used to cover large angles. Always sprung.
Flat Stools A moulded interior trim, rabbeted or bevel-rabbeted that receives the window frame sill. Non-rabbeted stools include a tongue to fit in the groove of the window frame sill.
Half Rounds May be used as a screen moulding or bead shelf edge or panel moulding.
Handrail Used as a support in a stairwell.
Inside Corner Used to join two walls at an inside corner. Solves problems of uneven joints where butted panels, wallpapered, painted or other contrasting surfaces meet. Gives corners a decorative finished look.
Panel Moulding Originally used to trim out raised panel wall construction. Now often used to frame attractive wall coverings for a paneled effect.
Quarter Rounds May be used as a base shoe. Inside corner moulding or to cover a 90 degree recessed juncture.
Panel Strips/Mullion Casings A strip that is applied over window jamb edges in a multiple opening window. Sometimes called a panel strip.
Picture Moulding Used to support hooks for picture hanging. Applied around a room’s circumference near the ceiling line.
Rabbet A cut or groove along or near the edge of a piece of wood that allows another piece to fit into it to form a joint. The notch is at a right angle cut.
Rabbeted Stools A moulded interior trim serving as a window frame sill cap.
Rounds Used as closet poles or room dividers.
Shelf Cleat Commonly used in closets, cabinets and bookcases to support the shelves. Also called shelf strip.
Shelf Edge Covers particle or flakeboard shelf edges.
Shingles Used on the rake of a building or around exterior window frames.
Squares Used in cabinets, framing for shelves and as balusters or spindles for supporting stair handrails.
Stops In door trim, a stop is nailed to the faces of the doorframe to prevent the door from swinging through. As window trim, a stop holds the bottom sash of a double-hung window in place. Also used as an apron under window stools.
T-Astragals A T-shaped astragal that is rabbeted to the same thickness of a swinging door.
Wainscot/Ply cap Trims out the upper edge or top of a Wainscot. Covers the rough sandwich edge of plywood in installation where it’s exposed to view. Also called a Dado cap.

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