lay out and cut the molding
Photo: Kolin Smith

Step 1: Lay Out and Cut the Molding

If you're working with walls that are out of level and plumb, allow your eye, rather than a level, to guide the position of the molding. For best results, focus on getting the crown to look parallel with any neighboring trim. Install it starting at an inside corner and work toward any outside corners.

Hold a strip of molding in place above a door or window casing. Adjust the molding until it looks even with the casing (ask a helper to stand back and look for you). Draw a pencil line to mark this positioning so that you can install the crown at this alignment.
Ask TOH users about Crown Molding

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    Tools List

    • miterbox with saw
      Miter box with hand saw
    • putty knife
      6-inch and 1½-inch putty knives
    • rasp
      rasp or sanding block
    • hammer
    • grout sponge
    • angled sash paintbrush

    Shopping List

    1. Plaster-coated Foam Molding
    Get 10 percent more than you think you'll need, to accommodate offcut.

    2. Joint Compound
    Lightweight, easy-sanding premixed compound is best. A 1-gallon container will cover about 60 feet of molding.

    3. 8d Finishing Nails
    To support long runs of larger molding profiles as the compound dries. 4. 150-grit Sandpaper

    5. Painter's Tape

    6. Primer and Paint