There are many different profiles of crown molding and different species of which to choose. A painted finshed crown would choose between poplar, pine or MDF. Poplar wood is the best for its dense properties. It's very durable, strong and finishes beautifully. Pine wood is soft, tends to split, crack and warp. MDF (multi-density fiberboard) is very economical, but has it drawbacks in chipping and swelling with moisture. Crown can be installed as a one piece, two or three piece design. You can add lighting (shown in picture to the right) and add cove lighting to the crown molding. Crown molding will change the culture of your home.
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What size crown?
It's best to look at your door, window casing, and baseboards to determine the right scale. An appropriately sized crown molding is either the same height as, or slightly smaller than, the baseboard. An eight foot ceiling would scale best a 4 1/4" crown, where as a nine foot ceiling would scale best a 5 1/4" crown.