Top sellers

What is Architrave and How is it Used?

Published : 13/09/2017 08:53:24
Categories : Product Information

Architrave is a common household feature. However, for most of us, it is something that is often hidden right in plain sight. Although we see it in our houses on a daily basis, not many of us can actually define what architrave really is, let alone understand how, and why, it’s used.

Bullnose Architrave

Caption: Bullnose Architrave

In this article, we will explain everything that you need to know about architrave how it can be used around your home:

What is Architrave?

Architrave is a form of interior moulding that is featured in most houses, offices and other buildings. In this case, it is the strip of material that rounds off the wall and door. While ‘architrave’ is the correct term for the moulding, it can also be mistaken for:

  • Door Casing
  • Door Surround
  • Door Frame

“But, what is an interior moulding?”

We hear you loud and clear...An interior moulding, or simply ‘moulding’ for short, refers to a strip of material that is used to cover the transitions between surfaces (in this case, the wall and door frame), or simply as an embellishment to a room.

Stepped Architrave

Caption: Stepped Architrave

Why is Architrave Necessary?

Whether you’re looking to upgrade your home, or just want to do a little decorating, there is a really important role that your architrave has to play.

A detailed architrave can add the finishing touches to a room, almost like the ‘cherry on top’, but did you know that there is actually a bigger role that this interior moulding has, rather than just being a pretty border? Beneath where the architrave is installed, there is a joint between the wall/ceiling casing around the door. The purpose of the architrave for doors is to hide that joint and any following shrinkage and movement between the two. Similarly, a skirting board would be used to cover the weaker plaster at the base of the wall, and act as a trim where the walls meet the floors.

What is Architrave Made From?

There are three popular materials that all interior mouldings can be made from, including architrave; MDF, hardwood and softwood. All of these materials are favoured among many people, but have their pros and cons (something we'll discuss in a different blog).

The History Behind Architrave

Architecture dates back around 40,000 years, and became more prominent around the Tudor period, as architrave was developed to improve the finishes on the building designs, and would give the distinguishable architrave style that we see today, especially in more ‘traditional’-styled homes.

Georgian Home

Caption: Architrave and other interior mouldings used in a Georgian home

Architrave facts?

Within classical architecture, an architrave is used as the lintel that rests above the columns of a building or statue. Within Greek language, the words ‘arche’ and ‘trabs’ would form together to mean ‘main beam’.

Architrave over columns

Caption: How the word Architrave was previously used

As you can see from the example above, the architrave is actually just one individual strip across the top, instead of also being included in the columns. However, over time, the meaning of architrave has adapted slightly to incorporate both the top bar and both side columns, to make a whole set of architrave.

Using Architrave in Your Home

If you're new to the world of interior mouldings, you may only think that there is a ‘set way’ to use architrave. While framing your door is the most popular use for the moulding, there are more creative uses for architrave that we have seen, which may then open up your mind to new possibilities:

Framing your Windows

Framed windows are often seen in more traditional-style buildings, but with the abundance of designs now available, it is also becoming more popular within contemporary designs.

A standard window design only uses open plastered corners with a window board at the base, but architrave around the frame of the windows adds a more focused design to the area, and can really change up the interior theme of the room.

Stepped Architrave Window

Caption: Stepped Architrave used around a window

Framing your Loft Hatch

An almost-hidden area, that you may not think about using architrave, is around your loft hatch. The difference that you can make to your loft, simply by adding a border, is incredible.

Unlike window framing, your loft hatch is not as regulated by period style, as it is a subtle area, and the wide variety of styles means that a modern home would not be fixed to an Edwardian theme and vice versa.

Stepped Architrave

Caption: Stepped Architrave used around a loft hatch

If you need any help looking for architrave to frame your doors, windows or loft hatches, please get in touch.

About the Author

Kieron Miller is the Managing Director of Skirting 4 U and has been working in the skirting board and online retail industry since 2012. Kieron has been using his extensive product knowledge and problem-solving experience to help both trade and private consumers all over the country find the perfect skirting board products for their projects. He continues to innovate new solutions and product ideas as the market continues to grow.

Related Posts

Share this content

Add a comment

 (with http://)