Friday, 1 September 2017

How I Chose The PERFECT Period Architraves!!!

I'm beyond excited to show you the very first of the posts revealing our teenage boy's bedroom! So much work has gone on behind the scenes: electricians, plasterers, carpenters... It feels uh-maaaaazing to finally be starting off on this journey with you here on Modern Country Style....

 Period Architraves

In my last post, I talked about the importance of getting the basics in place before you leap in to the accessorising. Today, I want to show you a super-effective way to do just that: by replacing bad architraves.

 Georgian architrave

Don't be frightened: it's not a big job for a good carpenter.
We started off with these monstrosities...


...which did absolutely nothing for the beautiful original doors, and certainly didn't emphasise the lovely proportions of the room, with its high ceilings.

 Period Architrave from Champion Timber

In our Living Room renovation, I really struggled to find suitable moulding for the doorways so we ended going the bespoke route, which is much more expensive. However, since then, I've come across the purrrrrr-fect period architraves from Champion Timber

 Georgian Door

I can't begin to tell you what a difference these have made to this bedroom. By upgrading our architraves to this beauty, the room was somehow elevated from tatty student box room to gorgeous period haven. Take a look at this early shot of the room, before we moved in, and see what I mean. The potential is doing its best to hide!...


The plain architrave that was there before was in no way in keeping with our home's Georgian roots so I felt utter glee to be able to have them replaced by something infinitely more suited to the space.

 Period Architrave

And it's not only that these period architraves fit the era of the house but they lift the house even further than I'd imagined. They give it a sense of, not exactly grandeur, that would be too ostentatious, but of homely elegance. I think that's the best way to put it.

 Champion Timber 2 part period architrave

When our lovely carpenter first fitted the architraves, my eyes nearly popped out of my head! Yes, I knew they'd look good but it was one of those moments when things turn out better than you could possibly have imagined. Delicious!

 Early Victorian Architrave

So, what should you be looking for in your ideal period architrave?

 Georgian door

First off, they have to be timber. No mdf, purrrlease! I've said it before and I'll say it again: mdf may look crisp and smart for a year maybe but you want these moulding to be in place for a long, long time to come. You want them to build up a history of dings and knocks that inevitably happens with family life because they bring a sense of time passing, and of having been there forever.

Mdf just doesn't age well, in my opinion. I think it has its place but period mouldings, such as architraves, that you want to stay for ever, should be wood.

 2 part period architrave

Secondly, they need to be substantial. Architraves are a fantastic way of adding period presence to a room. Don't shy away from the larger sizes both in width and in depth. Take a look at any authentic period architraves and you'll see they have a depth to them that isn't easily available of the shelf.

This is why Champion Timber's 2 part Period Architrave (no. 41238) was my saviour! It's is 32cm deep and 108mm wide; this, to me, is the perfect balance of elegance and status.

 Deep architrave

Thirdly, replacement architraves must look as authentic as possible. In the olden days, architraves would be assembled in situ, rather than machined in one piece. Our ones are made in two separate parts which are then slotted together to create a lovely typically Georgian feel. Look how well it ties in with the original door and skirting board. Mwah! Perfection!!

 Georgian mouldings

I spent such a long time researching the perfect period architraves both for downstairs and then for this floor and, believe me, these are the very best out there.  And when I find something good, something so perfect that it exactly fits what I was looking for, then I love to share it with you. Let me save you the heartache created by doggedly trudging through site after site and not finding what you're after.... 

 My Georgian home

I think its also worth saying that this is a case when it pays to not skimp on good quality timber. You want to look for wood that has very few knots, and that is dense and stable to minimise warping. This will also give a lovely, clean edge to the architrave. If the wood is not tightly grained enough then you will find that the wood is prone to splitting and bends and buckles. 

Look for wood that has already been sanded to save you a LOT of time and effort sanding all the gorgeous curves of your architraves. 

 Authentic replacement architraves

These are just some of the reasons I chose Champion Timber. It really was a case of the perfect product at the perfect price point!

This room was one of my least favourite in the house and now it's jumped right up to one of my favourites. 

Remember this?


And now look!

 Period architraves

I peep in and smile happily whenever I'm passing this room and I could never have believed that would be possible!


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2 comments :

diana ferguson said...

Why on earth were the original architraves removed in the first place I wonder? Bizarre

Magali@TheLittleWhiteHouse said...

I love the look it gives the door. I also had a hard time finding the perfect timber architrave for my cottage, I couldn't get anything as wide as you as the landing is not big and I want the same on all the doors upstairs... But I didn't want mdf or plain architrave... I found what I wanted... It's all stored in the living room, waiting for me to get to work!!!!!

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