Window trim: from boring to bold

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If you look closely at homes with beautiful windows, you’ll typically find one thing in common: wood trim. No matter what the style of the window is or what material it’s made out of, a painted or stained wood surround enhances the beauty of the window far more than the inexpensive "drywall wrap" that’s common on a lot of today’s homes.

Creating wooden surrounds for your windows is enjoyable, fairly inexpensive, and can be done by anyone with a few finish carpentry skills. And you can do one or two windows at a time, which is a lot less invasive to your home life than a lot of remodeling projects.

First, a couple of definitions

In the world of finish carpentry, there are a couple of terms that are helpful to know:

  • Window surround: A window surround consists of the four pieces that wrap the inside of the window frame, between the face of the window and the face of the wall.
  • Stool and apron: A window stool is the same as a window sill. It’s the horizontal board at the bottom of the window surround. The trim board beneath the stool, which covers the joint between the bottom of the stool and the face of the wall, is the apron.
  • Drywall wrap: A type of surround in which all four sides of the surround are done with drywall instead of wood.

Three ways to trim the window

There are basically three options for how you can trim out a window with wood. The simplest is to wrap the two sides and top of the window surround with drywall, and then install a stool and apron at the bottom. The drywall pieces are installed first and finished, prior to installation of the stool. If you already have drywall-wrapped windows, all you need to do is remove the bottom piece of drywall from the surround, to expose the rough framing underneath. …CONTINUED

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