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Baseboard and casing1/20
What would you consider high end base board and casing?
I make high end custom trim every day, no MDF thru my shop. Partly because it takes diamond tooling to run that stuff and my clients generally want solid wood even for the paint grade stuff. I normally run either poplar or soft maple for painted, stain grade varies depending on the look they are going for.
"High end" is an inaccurate and misleading term. It does nothing to define the term except in relative terms - relative to what?
Yes, we all remember the good ol' days when 5/4 2 pc base was common. Designers knew what chair rail or picture mold were. Nails did not bend and Hard Maple was not as hard.
The mass marketing of all things in the US from diapers to lifestyles to Presidents has determined to put all things in price competition, utilizing price as the only determiner of a thing's worth. Therefore, decisions are made chiefly in light of price, not architectural appropriateness. Not personal desire. Save money - no matter what.
Add in the mass marketing of MDF for moldings and cabinets, contrasted with the independent woodworker's inability to partner with others of their kind to market a better product. And state why it is better. The slippery slope becomes steeper, and things like MDF cabinets come into existence with no alarm. We all stood in silent shock as we discovered that people really would make cabinets from such an inappropriate material. And then that people would buy them.
So we end up in a world where $5m custom houses have hardboard doors, finger joint poplar casing, poplar wall paneling stained to look like cherry, and drawers with the dovetails printed on the vinyl coated drawer side. Craftsmen loose their skills and become installers. Builders become buyers, and architects and designers are unemployed.
Value is a moving target. The customer determines value.
Decisions are made in the margin. As Dave says compared to what.
With inflation people are more quality conscient in deflation they are more money conscient
The history of the world is determined by improvements in the margin.
"Employment of architects is projected to grow 8 percent from 2018 to 2028, faster than the average for all occupations. With a high number of students graduating with degrees in architecture, strong competition for internships and jobs is expected.Nov 5, 2019"
Housing sales are growing right now, as predicted.
The cabinet industry does appear to have overcapacity though.
Woodworkers - Bureau of Labor Statistics
"From an economist's perspective, making choices involves thinking 'at the margin' - that is, making decisions based on small changes in resources. Doing so leads to the optimal decisions being made, subject to preferences, resources and informational constraints."
David Sochar: Nice photo, it captures the essence of the decline of architectural detailing. Would it have been better or worse if they had used fake rectangular shutters?
While I can recall restoring old Victorian houses and having to grind knives to match existing mouldings, I wonder how much of that happens anymore. How often does a molding get run that is not from the WM profile book?
MDF molding is available at home centers and is cheap, and so it gets used even when it is not the best choice, even by those who may know better but are forced by circumstances to meet a price point.
Architectural design came to revolve around those items that were mass produced being specified for buildings, and manufacturers bastardized those designs in order to accommodate tooling and process, and meet a demand for lower costs and higher profit.
"High end" is a marketing term used to make customers feel that they are in the higher echelon of consumers, and those who use it have no baseline from which to place where "high end" is on any scale. Ask any shop if they produce "high end" products and see what the answer is.
We can't all produce "high end" products, much like we can't all be above average automobile drivers. Still, I wonder what makes it a $5M home if it has crappy architectural detailing? Is it size alone?
So a lot of interesting answers, I always wondered about high end kitchens. What can you put in a kitchen to make it high end. I guess high end would have a 2 part poly finish, 3/4 inch material for boxes and shelves, raised panel solid wood doors, dovetail solid wood drawers, soft close drawer slides and hinges, maybe some fancier pullout hardware and maybe some various lighting and probably some fancier trim and mouldings. Lastly a fancier stone counter top of some kind. How much more is that than a middle of the road or a lower end kitchen. It seems if the customers will pay the sky is the limit?
The general decline in knowledge and ability is everywhere.
Saw a news headline the other day (not from the "Onion"):
The myth of America is that we all can be rich - all above average (apologies to Mr Keillor). By definition it can't happen. In reality, if we all had a million dollars, a million dollars would be the cost of 10 yr old used car.
Some of the pricier kitchens we see have two large islands, often with sinks and beverage coolers and warming drawers, large range hoods of fine material and craft, lots of brackets and cubbies. Usually 2 -4 different woods and finishes, with plenty of stones and metals.
We do not do kitchens as a matter of course, but sometimes get called in to provide components for a kitchen.
That is an example of buying on the margin
Imho "high end" is relative and usually anything better than average. Plenty of 1m+ homes in my area with FJ painted pine 5" base and 2.5" or "upgraded" 3.25" colonial casing with drywall returns. (Those that have casing at all) high end is anything more than that..
It's what you cant find at home depot, or lowes..
I personally like 3pc built up casing 4 to 6" wide with 2" or so of projection and 2pc base (usually scribed to the floor unless there is design purpose for a non typical shoe mould. Everything should be out of 5/4.. jambs, casing, ect.. But that's not necessarily high end either.
"High End" is an ego builder. We are just finishing the moldings for a "high end???" house. Trim was done in Alder, not what I consider a high end wood. Knives were ground to match the decorators sketch. She wanted the casing to look like it had a back band but be one piece, done. We did 11 curved casings. Some for interior openings. Casing was 4" out of 5/4. Base was 6". Several thousand feet of wire brushed, pre-stained pine were delivered here to be ripped and ship lapped with a wide reveal. Then she decided she didn't like the wire brush look and had us make the rough sawn back into the face. The first batch was pretty knotty and she didn't want any knots on the edges. Just guessing the batches were, ponderosa, sugar, & spruce. Full thickness rough sawn 1 x 10s. We put it through the molder to a final of 3/4" & machined edges. All is being used outside as either wall coverings or ceilings. I don't know the total price tag but guessing an 8,000' decorator house ain't cheap. Therefore it must be "high end." At last, we are?? a high end shop. Or just another job shop that makes whatever the decorator wants.
Now back to what we normally do: a bank, dentist offices, office receptions. No more of that "high end" stuff.