When it comes to the exterior of a building, cornices are the horizontal decorative moulding that crowns or caps the top of a wall. They also serve as a means of directing rainwater away from the wall structure. This is particularly important for buildings with gables and mansard roofs where rafter tails are exposed and stick out like sore thumbs.
The general term for this type of trim is cornice but the specific construction and appearance varies based on the architectural style in question. For example, an Ionic order cornice has a geometric pattern while the Corinthian order has more of a detailed floral or leafy look. Regardless of the style of cornice, there are some common construction materials including timber, paper-covered plaster, polyurethane and moulding plastics.
In residential homes, a cornice can be used to cover the space between your home’s ceiling and the walls. It can also be added above windows and doors to conceal the pelmets that hold the strings for curtains or blinds.
Cornices can add a lot to the look of your home, especially when it’s installed by an experienced home design professional. However, it’s not essential that every home have a cornice. It all depends on your personal taste and the look you’re trying to achieve.
If you’re unsure whether a cornice would be a good fit for your home, contact a home design specialist today. They can help you choose a design that will complement the existing style of your house or work with a new construction.