How to Add Decorative Molding to a Door

Dressing up an interior or exterior door with decorative moulding adds breadth and character. While the effect can be dramatic, the process is not. A few lineal feet of decorative moulding and some hand tools transform a flat, drab door into a unique, artisan door. Add decorative moulding to any door, but the process will vary. For solid panel doors, glue or nail moulding to the door panel. For hollow-core doors, the moulding must be glued only.

Decide on the pattern. Sketch out the door to scale on a piece of grid paper. Draw at least four design ideas. Pick the design you feel will best work with the decor and environment.

Draw the outside perimeter of the pattern in pencil on the door panel. Measure and cut the moulding pieces on the mitre or box saw. Apply a thin line of wood glue just inside the pattern's perimeter.

Nail the moulding pieces in place with the finish nail gun.

Fill all of the nail holes and mitre seams with wood filler and sand to a 120-grit smoothness.

Stain or paint the moulding to match or contrast the door panel.

Things You'll Need

  • Grid paper
  • Decorative moulding
  • Finish nail gun
  • Mitre or box saw
  • Pencil
  • Measuring tape
  • Wood glue
  • Wood filler
  • Wood stain or paint
  • 120-grit sand paper
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About the Author

JL Wilson has worked in the construction industry for nearly 20 years. During that time, he labored as a carpenter, cabinetry door and millwork foreman, installer, designer, and account manager. He has designed, built, and installed projects as simple as a single jewelry box and as complicated as integrated swimming pool/waterfall complexes. Wilson primarily writes for eHow and Answerbag.