Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Trim... Dress Up for Houses

June 2011

The new windows were in, the french doors were in, and now we were getting down to small changes each day.  Since we had to add trim to all our new windows we decided it was a good opportunity to look at all the trim.  Many of the boards were in pretty rough shape.  They were heavily covered in lead paint and no amount of scraping was going to make them smooth.  We decided to go ahead and replace all the window trim on the house. 

This decision was big and expensive.  But something had to be done, some of the trim was actually missing.  First, all of our sills had been cut when they installed the 1970's siding.  The sills used to extend past the window trim, we knew this because there was a ghost of the original sill size on the old siding.  Also, it was standard practice in the 1920's to do this, we have evidence on a lot of the neighbor's houses.  This was pretty devasting, I guess the people who installed the 1970's siding were too lazy to knotch the siding around all the sills so they just cut them off. Horrible.  If you ever buy a house and do something like this, we would no longer be friends.  Total dealbreaker. We contemplated replacing all the sills, but, due to the delicate nature of our old windows, and the cost, we decided to cheat and tack small pieces back and then use wood filler to smooth them out. It wasn't perfect but it gave us the look we were after.  The windows were also missing trim under the sill.  Once again a ghost made it pretty clear that this was original and had been removed.  So we looked at several trims and picked a small simple option for underneath.

Below is a picture of the sill add-ons and the new trim.

As we went around replacing the trim boards, adding to the sills, and installing new trim under the windows, we talked about improving our trim. Based on the simple style of our house and houses similiar in age the original trim design would have been pretty basic. However, our neighbor and several other older houses in the neighborhood had a small crown or cap moulding on the top of their windows.  I really liked the look of these, I felt it dressed up the windows and would provide more depth to our elevation.  We decided to break with house authencity and add this additional moulding. I love it!  House preservationists be darn sometimes you just want to dress your little house!

I wish we had a better picture of the trim close up but unfortunately this was the blurry part of the remodel where we were lucky to capture anything.

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