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You may find that you want to treat the sides and top of a cased opening the same. So you'll take the same profile that's used on the sides, or jambs, and run that all around the opening. In this example, a cased opening is created by using the same trim on the sides and on the top of the doorway. In a window application, a "picture frame" effect is created by using the same profile all around (top, bottom and sides).
Though plate rails and picture rails have lost their utilitarian function, a trim line at the top of the window and below the ceiling is a powerful design tool. In addition to making a space more interesting and rich, this trim line can be used to establish a "datum" from which other elements such as soffits can be organized from, an approach used by architect Sarah Susanka and many other architects quite effectively.
8. Crown molding. At the top of the wall, where wall and ceiling come together, is the crown molding. Just like other trim items, the choice of profile and size are almost unlimited.
What is especially nice about crown molding is its ability to soften the transition between wall and ceiling, between vertical and horizontal plans. So rather than have that abrupt sharp corner, crown molding lets the eye ease into moving from one to another. It's a kinder, gentler and more elegant approach to a change.