The Different Types of Coving to Choose From

A couple of years back clients were getting in touch to ask: “Is coving old-fashioned?”. Now coving is a hugely popular option for enhancing and brightening interior living spaces. No matter whether you have a Victorian villa or a new build, coving provides a pleasing ‘finish’ for interiors, and provides great opportunities for elegant colour contrasts.

The current question we get asked is: “What types of coving should I choose for my home?” so in this blog the Logic Plastering coving team provides a guide to selecting the type and material you need.

What is Coving?

You may see types of coving described as ‘cornice work’, ‘moulding’ or ‘ceiling roses’. In order to cut down on the confusion, Logic Plasterers define coving in this way: it’s a decorative feature, which looks like it’s part of the original architecture. Most often it is used to cover the join between the ceiling and the wall, but it can also be used to create wall panelling, ceiling features, or to enhance door frames.

Types of Coving

The range of coving options continues to grow, so we have selected the 5 most popular features, currently:

  1. Coving or Cornice Work. This is used to describe the strip that covers the join between a wall and a ceiling. Cornice tends to be used to describe C shaped decorative coving work, such as the kind of mouldings popular in Victorian homes. Contemporary coving is more plain and sleek. It is often described as ‘art deco’.
  2. Ceiling Rose. This is a plaster moulding that encircles a ceiling light fitting using a leaf or flower motif. The ceiling rose was originally created to shield the ceiling from candle soot or heat marks. Now they draw the eye upwards and can be painted to create an attractive feature for a room with a high ceiling.
  3. Picture Rail or Dado Rail. You’ve most likely seen picture rails in heritage properties. They were designed to save the wall plaster from having nails knocked in. Instead picture hooks are used to suspend portraits or fine art. The dado rail is purely practical. It is installed at chair height and stops scuffing on the walls.
  4. Architrave. This sounds very grand and, in fact, it has the power to turn an ordinary doorway into a grand entrance. Architrave moulding conceals the join between a door frame and the wall. This can be enhanced by coving work, which creates a feature out of an entrance.
  5. Wall Panelling. You need quite a large room or hallway to carry this off, but the decorative effect can be stunning. Panels are fixed to the walls to look as though they are part of original moulding, and the different components of the panel can be painted in contrasting colours.

What Material Should My Coving Be?

What’s important to remember is that coving is meant to be looked at, so the material (as long as it does the job properly) is less important than the effect it creates. Originally coving was created using plaster – because this was the only option. We would not recommend it today, unless you live in a period property. Applying plaster coving is a long and painstaking process. Instead the Logic team recommend these alternatives: wood, polystyrene or polyurethane.

Polyurethane mouldings tend to be the most popular choice for coving work. It’s stronger than polystyrene and will last longer. The material is light, which makes it easy to install in any room in the house, and it leaves space for cabling to pass behind it. Polyurethane coving is now available in a range of contemporary styles and accurately copied historic patterns.

Logic Plastering Installs All Types of Coving

The Logic Plastering team is based in Bedfordshire and is made up of skilled professional plasterers who have years of experience installing stylish coving features. We’ve worked in period and heritage properties, as well as more contemporary homes, so we know what the options are and can offer guidance on which type of coving to choose, should you want it.

Would you like to speak to a Logic plasterer about fitting coving in your home? Call us today on 07809 228328