Series: The Silent Stars – episode 2: Skirting Boards
They elegantly keep their cool in the background though upon closer inspection, you will spot the definitive influence of door handles, window handles, skirting boards, switches and sockets on the room as a whole. We will show you how to find exactly the right touch to accent your home amidst a slightly bewildering sea of options.
You know the effect: place a picture in a large frame, be it white, cream or black, and suddenly it evokes considerably more power and presence! Thanks to monochromatic framing, colours stand out with greater clarity and graphic structures catch the eye. A matte finish lends a peaceful resonance to improve the quality of the presentation – for precisely the same design effect as a skirting board.
First and foremost, baseboards (or skirting boards as they are sometimes called in commercialese) are, of course, very useful: they cover flooring expansion joints, protect against the accumulation of dirt and prevent water from seeping below the surface – especially important for „floating“ in which the floor does not firmly adhere to the subfloor. They also provide a natural means of furniture ventilation along exterior walls and are the ideal channel to invisibly route wires and cables. One must admit it serves an impressive variety of functions for a design detail that often receives remarkably little attention. And above all, skirting boards are quite inconspicuous and modest by nature – making them all the more stylish!
So what is the trick? The effect is precisely that of a matte finish. That is why skirting boards and crown mouldings complement each other ever so nicely: the wall between them acts as a harmoniously framed picture – a trait which is especially effective for wallpaper with an expressive pattern.
Proportions are important. A good example: the so-called Hamburg skirting board, a classic with a simple yet elegant profile. It usually measures ten centimetres in height and is therefore suitable for rooms 3.20 to 3.50 meters tall. If the room has low ceilings, these skirting boards seem pushy though with high ceilings, the wall lacks visual support and a solid foundation.
Which proportion and design best fit your home? It is worthwhile to explore your options using a selection of samples. Tall or short, smooth or profiled, painted, laminated or made of wood – it may surprise you what a difference a few centimetres can make in the effect of a skirting board on the feel of an entire room.
By the way: if you would like to install skirting boards, there is no need to bother learning safer hammering techniques if you are worried about possibly gouging your beautiful board. Today, skirting boards can be glued into place or clipped for the ultimate in practicality like our Haro product line: just push the board onto the clip. Voilà! This option is especially useful if cables are routed from a TV or stereo system. If you would like to remove or replace them: pull the board out, replace the cable and push the board back into place. What more could you ask for?