french porch double door

With its simple lines, affordable materials and ease of assembly, there’s no reason you shouldn’t build this door surround at home this weekend.

This is one of those historic door trim patterns that I’ve seen all over the country, and especially in rural Victorian farmhouses.

But you’ll also find similar designs in early Craftsman style homes too.  That’s because Victorian style homes were still being built when Craftsman style became popular, and so naturally there was some design overlap.

I designed this one to be more Victorian than Craftsman, though it’s easy to change this design to be more purely Craftsman style, as explained below.

On This Page

  • Price to Have This Professionally Installed
  • How to Convert it to Craftsman Style Door Trim
  • Materials Inventory
  • How to Build this Door Trim Step by Step
french porch double door
You can find door trim styles similar to this one in Victorian farmhouses and townhouses all over North America.
How Much to Have Door Trim Like this Professionally Installed?

Installed  About $250.00 – $300.00 (including materials) to install a door trim trim pattern like this.  If your finish carpenter uses more expensive materials, like poplar, this price could easily double.

Painted  Most finish carpenters don’t prep and paint their own moldings, so you’ll probably have to hire someone else to do the painting.  Better yet, just do the painting yourself and save a whole bunch of money.  Spend the money you save on painting to buy more moldings!

Since installing this door trim was an afterthought on this project, we didn’t install new baseboards.  But you should!  There is a readily available Victorian style mdf baseboard you can buy at most any lumber yard, and so should include it in your own Victorian molding makeover right from the start.  I’ll add that baseboard to my Molding Inventory page soon.

Door Trim Paint Color

  • Benjamin Moore
  • Satin Impervo
  • White Dove #OC-17

Before & After Pictures

In case you missed it there’s a fun set of B&As for this pattern here: Before & After: Moldings for Patio Double Doors.

How to Change it to Craftsman Style Door Trim

A few simple changes will convert this door trim design from Victorian to Craftsman style.  If you’re going to make the conversion, try to keep all of the proportions the same.

I’ve worried obsessively over all of the proportions on all of the patterns you see on our blog.  So make sure to pay attention to the thicknesses of material, the placement of the details and the width of reveals (flat surfaces) whenever making adjustments to a design.  If you’re not sure, then just make yourself a model and play with it until you’re happy.

victorian door trim style painted white
A few simple changes to the entablature can make this door trim more Craftsman style.

Cornice Crown and Necking: Change to the Molding Profiles Below

Note: There are a number of small cove molding profiles available at local lumber yards, you don’t have to use this exact one.  The point is to use a molding that is primarily a cove, rather than one with all the extra detail like in our Victorian example.

crafstman arts and crafts style door trim
This necking is made from simple mdf flat-stock, the same as the abacus above the cornice.

Plinth Block: Change to Simple Flat-Stock

A Victorian style plinth block I bought from a local lumber yard.

Flat-Stock Plinth Block

You can see how easy it is to make a simple plinth block like this.  I usually make mine from scraps left over from making the entablature.  If you look closely at the below photo, I adjusted the thickness by adding a 1/4″ thick piece of mdf board.

plinth block crafstman style
I made this Craftsman style plinth from MDF boards.

Let’s say that you’ve made the above changes to your door trim design.  Well now instead of having a design that’s more Craftsman than Victorian, it can still pass as Victorian.  Do you see?  Most all molding designs can be tweaked in this manner.

Material Inventory to Make this Door Trim $52.84

Starting from the top to the bottom.  [See my Molding Inventory page for more detail about each molding]


Crown Molding Profile: Use for entabalature cornice, 10′ ($1.29/lf) = $12.90.

More about CM-007 here >>


Use for pilasters and abacus.  More about FS-001 here >>

mdf board for door trim molding
3 ea. ($6.87 ea.) = $20.61


Use for the entablature frieze.  More about FS-002 here >>

pre-primed mdf flat-stock board for plinth blocks
1 ea. ($5.49 ea.) = $5.49


Use for necking (collar).

More about PM-007 here >>

panel molding astragal door trim necking
8′ ea. ($0.48/lf) = $3.84


Plinth blocks.  If needed, these can be trimmed down to fit a narrower width pilaster.

More about PB-001 here >>

plinth block everture lowes home improvement price
2 ea. ($5.00 ea.) = $10.00

DIY Step by Step Victorian Door Trim

This is such an easy door trim design to make.  If you’re new to DIY moldings, this would make a great beginner project!

how to install a diy victorian style plinth block

Installation Tips

  1. Use lots of Liquid Nails on all contact surfaces when installing your moldings.  And I mean all contact surfaces!
  2. Below  Note the scribe line I made to mark the bottom of the frieze.  That’s the guide I use to cut my pilasters.  The pilasters usually are slightly different sizes on both sides, so don’t measure one side and then cut both pilasters.  Finish carpentry is a cut-to-fit craft.
Victorian door trim pilaster how to cut

Below  The pilaster is glued to the top of the plinth block as well as glued and nailed to the wall.

plinth block and pilaster for victorian and craftsman door trim

Installation Tip

Cut the frieze board tall enough so that the bottom of the abacus rests on top of the frieze.  (See abacus farther down.)

door trim header on top of pilaster moldings
necking bead molding for entablature header

Below  Use a 23 gauge micro pinner to nail those small pieces in place.  Senco and Accuset both make excellent micro pinners.

bead molding trim as necking on door trim

Below  I get quite a few questions about where I bought this crown molding profile.  This one I buy from a specialty millwork company that makes all of their own moldings.

The material, finish and price far exceeds anything you can buy at the big box home improvement stores.  Small molding and millwork retailers like these can be hard to find, but are well worth the effort.

victorian door trim header entablature molding

Below  This is a nice entablature pattern as is, even without the abacus.  I could have stopped here.

cornice crown molding on door trim

Design Note

Because this cornice molding has such a strong profile, I could have omitted installing the abacus.  But I wanted this pattern to match the slightly more elaborate door moldings I installed in the adjoining living room, so included the abacus.

abacaus entablature on mdf victorian door trim molding

Prepare for Paint

I’m assuming you’re doing a top to bottom molding makeover: crown, baseboard, door and window trim, and so paining the walls is the very last thing you do before hanging pictures back up.  This is the sequence that will get you there.

how to paint victorian door trim moldling

Preparation Tip

Caulking the seams and small gaps is the very last thing you do before you apply the first coat of paint.

diy door trim molding paint

Do You Need Help Painting?

I’m adding more posts to my How to Paint Moldings page, so you can go there for tips if you need a little help getting started.

door trim victorian mdf diy how to on double doors

Did You Make This?

I hope you’ll send me pictures of the door trim you made.  I’ll add them to this page so everyone who visits can see what colors you used on the trim and walls, and just to see what other diy finish carpenters are doing.

Good luck making your own door trim!