Architrave is the finishing trim or wood that fixes around internal doors, windows and loft openings. These strips cover the small gap between the wall and the door frame. Architrave frames a doorway much like a painting is framed. When choosing architrave try and match the skirting board design because both come in various styles and widths in different types of wood. Solid oak architrave and skirting board look good when you have a solid oak door because it enhances a doorway. Architrave should be fitted before the skirting boards are fixed or the room is decorated.
Tools and bits you will need...
- Tape Measure
- Mitre Saw
- Spirit Level
- Nails, Screws or No Nails Type Glue
- Tack Cloth
- Wood Filler
Getting A Good Finish
Solid oak architrave is fairly easy to fit, although paying a carpenter is always another option. Start by measuring the head-piece (width above the door) then cut either side of this wood at 45 degree angles with a mitre saw. It's good practice to measure twice because once you have made the cut - that's it - there's no going back. With solid oak architrave you have probably spent a little more money than buying the usual types sold at most timber merchants so you will want to take your time to ensure you get a good finish. On some properties you may find door frames could be less than perfectly square so an adjustment on the the angles when cutting may be required.
Fixing Oak Architrave
Once you have cut the horizontal piece for above the door you can fix this with nails, screws or a strong glue. Note: If using nails or screws you will need some oak coloured wood filler to cover the counter sunk holes. When fixing the architrave the norm is to fix it about 5mm from the edge of the door frame. Be sure to use a spirit level to make sure it's perfectly straight. The best way to get that perfect finish is to place the spirit level on the head piece while in place, but not fixed and manoeuvre the architrave until the fluid in the spirit level indicates it's straight.
Next, place another length of architrave vertically up to the head piece and mark with a pencil. This is where the next cut will be. Repeat the process with the other side and cut the two lengths at 45 degrees with the mitre saw.
Fix the vertical pieces using strong glue or screws, making sure the mitre cuts are butted up closely with the head piece and ensuring the gap between the wall and door frame are covered. To finish use caulk to fill any gap left between the wall and the architrave. Finally, sand lightly then wipe off any dust with a tack cloth, then paint or stain to finish. If you have fitted skirting boards and doors it's a good idea to stain or oil everything together to gain a consistent look.