It's All About the Details: Cased Openings

What can we do with interior openings that can have an impact?  One way to treat an interior opening is to finish them off with casing, known in the interior design world as a cased opening.  The definition of cased openings states it is "an interior doorway or opening with all the trim and molding installed without the door or closure" (Dictionary of Construction). 

We are familiar with having cased openings, because in most homes, open doorways have trim or molding finishing the edges.  In contemporary or adobe style homes, cased openings are not as common.  We associate cased openings as a finishing touch, and because it is typically a standard in most homes, they sometimes go unnoticed when it is a simple design.


There are several different ways to design your home's cased openings, from very ornate to simple.  Also, the wall thickness can determine the design of the cased opening, and again the overall style can be simple or ornate.  Then there is the question of stained or painted.  Stained will cost more than paint due to the wood selection, but you cannot go wrong with either decision.

The most simplistic way to do a cased opening is to have one piece of molding surround the edges.

Donna's Blog: Cased Openings, designer Lauren DeLoach Traditional Home
designer Lauren DeLoach, Traditional Home, photographer Emily Jenkins Followill



Then there are ways to create ornate cased openings that have pediments as the door header, think back to ornate days of kings and queens in France and England, etc.  Of course, you can be inspired by these designs, and make them much simpler than the days of kings and queens.



Design a transom above the cased opening.  This will make the room appear larger with the extra visual height and openness from the glass above.



One way to design a gorgeous cased opening is to panel the actual opening thickness.  Yes, you will need a thicker wall than your typical 4 to 6-inch walls.  Below shows Christy's newly remodeled home.  She made the walls 12-inches thick and designed a drop panel design on the walls & ceiling of the cased opening.


Donna's Blog: Cased Openings, Christy's house


Cased openings with built-ins designed inside them or hidden storage.

 Cased opening design options are endless, and the ones I've highlighted above are just some ways you can design your cased openings.  So what is your favorite way to design a cased opening?  Do you prefer the standard traditional design you see in most homes, a typical 3 to 4-inch molding surrounding the entire opening, or something a little more unique such as paneling or ornate carving, etc?


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