Overview

illustrated diagram for How to Build a Window Cornice
Photo: Gregory Nemec
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Cut list
Download and print a cut list for building a window cornice.

1x8 poplar front piece: one at 38 inches from long point to long point
1x8 poplar sides: two at 6 inches
1x4 poplar French cleat: one at 36½ inches
1x10 poplar top piece ripped to 8½ inches: one at 42½ inches
3-inch primed-pine crown molding: Cut to fit.
¾-inch primed pine ogee molding: Cut to fit.
Primed-pine cap molding: Cut to fit.

We made the frame of our cornice (not including the top and moldings) 38 inches wide by 6 inches deep by 7¼ inches tall to cover a 32-inch-wide window with a curtain rod that measures 35 inches from finial to finial and stands a maximum of 5 inches off the wall.
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    Tools List

    • 30-foot tape measure
      Tape measure
    • miter saw
      Miter saw
    • drywall corner clincher tool
      Corner clamps
    • pneumatic brad nailer
      Pneumatic brad nailer
    • air compressor
      air compressor
    • circular saw
      Circular saw
    • sandpaper
      220-grit sandpaper
    • 2-and-a-half-inch paintbrush
      Paintbrush
    • two-foot level
      2-foot level
    • drill
      Drill/driver

    Shopping List

    Poplar 1x8 for the sides and front Get a 5-foot length.

    Poplar 1x4 for the French cleat Get a 4-footer.

    Poplar 1x10 for the top Get a 4-footer.

    3-inch solid primed-pine crown molding

    ¾-inch primed-pine ogee molding

    Primed-pine cap molding for the bottom of the cornice1 ½-inch brad nails

    ¾-inch brad nails

    2 ½-inch wood screws

    Wood glue

    Wood filler

    Paint