Skirting board ideas

Written by joanne robitaille
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Skirting board ideas
Plain skirting boards add little to a room's character. (Empty Room image by dwight9592 from

Skirting boards are an essential part of room design. They're capable of adding just as much character to a room as ceiling mouldings or wall coverings and also help to hide the gap between the walls and floor. Skirting board styles and designs are just as varied as other household design elements and can be specifically tailored to fit any aesthetic. While traditional skirting boards are made of wood, other material options including tile and MDF are also available.

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Tall Dark-Stained Skirting Boards

While exceedingly simple in design, flat skirting boards with a small curved moulding at the base can create a great deal of impact in a room. The dramatic effect comes from using baseboards that measure eight to 12 inches in height, rather than the regular four inches. Though any type of wood can be used for this type of skirting boards, a key design element is to give them a dark stain so that they'll stand out regardless of what colour the room is painted. Alternately, if you prefer your skirting boards to have a moulding on top, you can easily reverse the construction of this style of skirting board so that the flat baseboard is at the bottom and the curved moulding is at the top.

Tile Skirting Boards

Skirting boards aren't only for living rooms and dining rooms. It's entirely possible to create the effect of skirting boards in a tiled bathroom. While a quick and easy option is to use an alternate colour tile with a shorter height than the rest of the tile in the bathroom, you can also purchase tiles specially formed to act as skirting boards. The advantage to using these specially designed tiles is that, rather than stopping at floor level, these tiles curve slightly at the bottom in an attempt to blend the floor and wall together. Skirting board tiles are also available in external and internal corners, so you don't have to worry about creating the perfect joint angle.

MDF Skirting Boards

An economical option for skirting boards is to use boards made of MDF (medium-density fiberboard). Stronger than plywood, MDF skirting boards cost a lot less money than traditional wood skirting boards, which is a big advantage if you're updating more than one room. Some might feel guilty about painting actual wood skirting boards, but since this style of skirting board is made from an engineered wood product, you can paint it guilt free. Being able to paint the skirting board can help elongate a room or hallway if you paint it the same colour as the walls. A white hallway with white painted skirting boards creates a wonderfully bright and airy space.

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