Victorian Plaster Coving

Victorian Plaster Coving

Genuine Victorian style

We stock a number of different designs that recreate Victorian cornice style. They are made in a similar same way as the originals, by hand in a mould to a standard length and they can be quickly delivered to your doorstep. Once fitted and painted it is impossible to tell the difference between a Victorian original and our reproduction. Plaster cornice was an important part of Victorian interior design (1837 – 1901) and a wide variety of classical styles were commonly used as the expensive running of cornice in situ gave way to using cheaper mass produced cornice that was delivered in standard lengths from a plasterworks.

A bit of Victorian moulding background

At a time when the UK population was expanding rapidly most Victorian houses were speculatively built and although they are easily recognisable nowadays it should be remembered that they were actually built piecemeal by small firms over a 60-year period. This gradual evolution created a great diversity in plaster cornice style and designs throughout the era.

The invention of gelatine moulds in the middle of the nineteenth century allowed mass production of cheaper cornice designs that were installed in vast quantities according to the what the developer thought looked nice and would help sell the property. Following the patenting of Fibrous Plaster in 1856 cornices also tended to creep progressively further across into the ceiling, creating new styles like Swan Neck coving. The cornice was markedly more ornate and grander than that in the Georgian period. 

Choose your cornice to create the right impression

In Victorian times it was considered very important to create the right impression when visitors came to your house. Victorian cornice played a part in this with the grandest most elaborate designs used in the entrance hall and the main rooms where visitors were entertained (Egg and Dart, Acanthus Leaf, Dentil and Modillions designs become widely used). Victorian coving was often decorated in colour which was used to pick out the various other elements of the room; gilding was also applied to some of the more elaborate designs. However, cornice designs became more restrained as you moved through to the private rooms of a house.