Friday, June 13, 2014

Installing Window Trim: A Basic How We Did It Guide

As mentioned in a previous post, our house has no window or door trim. Anywhere. And the windows and doors/closets look like they are missing some oomph. So to fix that, we installed some! Oh, what a difference it makes!!

In true DIY fashion, our first step in the process was to do a little Pinterest browsing. Naturally, right? We came across this pin and determined it is the exact style we wanted:

This is what we started with...

Unfortunately, I couldn't grab a good before picture of the whole window (too much light!), but this gives you an idea of what a blah mess surrounded the window before.

Materials Used:
- 1x3 pine to fit measurements
- standard wood screws
- paintable caulk
- wood putty

Step 1: Measure

Measure around the window. This is the portion of drywall around the window, in our case, that the trim would sit on. These are my fancy room and window measurements. Our window measures exactly 5ft x 40in.

Step 2: Cut

Next, you will want to take the window measurements and determine at what length to cut your wood. The top and bottom pieces are easy. Just take the width of the window, and add on 2 times the width of your trim. (In our case, it was 40in + 3in + 3in, since we used 1x3 pieces for trim.)

The sill or "stool" piece is a little bit harder. we wanted this piece to stick out just a little bit farther than the outer trim to give it a little bit more of that craftsman style. We added an additional half inch to each side of the sill/stool to achieve that look. (46+ .5 + .5)

You will also want to measure the depth of the sill to help notch out the pieces you need on either side. Unfortunately, we didn't grab a picture of the shot, but you can see what I'm talking about here:

From the outside edge, you will want to measure in the width of your overhang and the width of the wood. (.5in + 3in) Use a square and mark out your cut. We used a jigsaw in order to cut this portion of the wood. (This Old House does a pretty good job of explaining this process.)

Then measure the side pieces. This will sit on top of the sill piece, so it will measure the same as the height of your window, minus the depth of your wood. Even though we used 1x3in pieces, the true depth of the wood was only 3/4. (5ft - .75in = 4ft 11.25in)

Step 3: Attaching Your Trim

For this step, we used standard 2in wood screws. Before screwing into the wood, we pre-drilled holes in our trim pieces prior to driving the screw. This helped to prevent from cracking/splintering the wood. I do believe though, since the trim on our windows is purely cosmetic that you could get away with using a product like Liquid Nails or other construction adhesive to simply attach the boards to the wall. This would eliminate the step of pre-drilling and any fear that you may have about damaging the window itself. (We're not experts, this is just what worked for us!)

Step 4: Caulk, Wood Putty and Sand

Caulk the gaps and putty the screw holes. (You can find some good tips for caulking trim at Remodelaholic.) Once the putty dries, use a fine grit sandpaper to smooth out any inconsistencies. 

Step 5: Paint!

Paint your new trim!

We did a fairly sloppy job of painting our trim since the rest of the room will be painted soon. (Who wants to "color" inside the lines when you don't have to, am I right?) Actually, we had already started the process of painting the walls when this picture was snapped. 

And here's a glimpse at the chaos that comes along with us painting...

Can you guess which Mood Board we chose based on that picture? More on that to come next time!!

We're so happy with the way the trim turned out. There may not be many beautiful "pin-worthy" pictures in this post but at least we are making progress!

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