Siding: 5 ways to add gingerbread

Siding: 5 ways to add gingerbread

What comes to mind when someone mentions gingerbread? If you're like many people, it's probably those delicious cookies that are so popular during the holidays. However, in the home design and exterior siding industries, gingerbread describes the decorative trim that used to spice up the outside appearance of just about any home.

Gingerbread: use it with any architectural style

Gingerbread is most often associated with homes featuring Victorian styling -0 a design well-known for its extravagant exterior trim. But the eye-catching millwork can be used to add pizazz to any architectural style and in conjunction with every variety of exterior veneer.

Whether your house has wood, fiber cement or vinyl siding, there are exterior trim details that can enhance its curb appeal. Here are a few areas where you might want to consider adding gingerbread during your next exterior siding project:

  1. Front door -- While an expensive new front door can set off the entry to your home, so can a decorative door head feature at much less cost. The trim can be used by itself or with side posts to picture frame your front door. Door head features are available in numerous styles and configurations.
  2. Windows -- There are many types of gingerbread that can turn ordinary windows into exterior focal points. Window trim is manufactured in many profiles and sizes, but be careful not to choose a width that overpowers the opening.
  3. Gables -- The peaks created by two roof planes meeting can be ideal locations for adding gingerbread to your home. Companies offer gable trim in intricate designs to match just about any roof pitch and architectural style.
  4. Porches -- A front porch can be a great place to relax after a long day, but in many cases it's also a large part of your home's front elevation. Improve your house's curb appeal by adding running trim to the porch soffit and top it off by installing cornice brackets on the posts. You don't have to live in the French Quarter to have a decorative and inviting front porch.
  5. Vents -- Proper airflow is an important part of keeping your heating and cooling costs under control. However, the vents shouldn't detract from the appearance of your home. Many manufacturers offer decorative vents in sizes and shapes that can actually accent your house's architectural details.

Gingerbread trim was once primarily made from wood. However, if you're using fiber cement or vinyl siding on your home because their low-maintenance qualities sound appealing, choosing trim made from PVC or polyurethane might be the best way to go. They may still require a coat of paint to match your exterior color scheme, but damage from moisture should never be an issue.

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