This trim little design element can be used to do the heavy lifting of supporting artwork or simply be decorative
A picture rail is a strip of decorative trim applied high on the walls of a room. Its original use was as a support for the hooks used when hanging pictures on plaster walls of older homes, which could not withstand the cracking caused by nailing.
Wallpaper is often applied up to a picture rail, while the wall above is painted, to add contrast and delineate the two areas.
A picture rail also provides a convenient border for contrasting paint.
The look of a picture rail can be achieved with any simple trim piece.
In rooms with shorter ceilings, the picture rail can be installed at the top of the wall. In this case, it sits right below the crown molding.
Hardware used for hanging pictures may be visible or hidden. In this case, the wire and hooks of this picture are visibly hanging from the picture rail.
In this contemporary take on a picture rail, the wire and hooks are attached in a recessed area of the wall and a length of molding trim is is used as a crown.
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