Explanation of terms used:

Below are terms I use in my emails, invoices and estimates. 


The act, process, or occupation of working wood into a useful or desired form. Specifically as it pertains to finish carpentry it is the cutting and installation of trim molding  such as crown molding, chair railing, picture molding, door and window casing and baseboard. Also the installation of stair parts, newels and balusters and wall railing. Job logistics and the provision of materials from lumber and millwork yard. Setting up of all woodworking tools and proper maintenance and cleaning of the work area after project completion.

Trim carpenters

Are specialized workers who’s duties include the installation  molding and trim found on ceilings ( crown molding), windows and doors ( casings), floors( baseboards and shoe molding), fireplaces ( mantles) and walls ( chair railing and wainscoting). Trim carpenters are also called finish carpenters  because they typically complete the project with the final carpentry details, making the job look more finished on any new construction. The work involved with this vocation is physically demanding, which includes bending, kneeling, lifting, carrying,fetching, climbing and standing for long periods, in addition to working in all types of weather conditions.

For the installation of paint grade molding it is the trim carpenters responsibility professional install all moldings within the paint grade standard. Expect butt joints to be tight to within 1/16 to 1/8 inch . Customers should expect coped joints on crown molding to be 1/16 to 3/8 inch which can easily be caulked prior to painting.

In conclusion it is the finish carpenters responsibility to install the crown molding, wainscoting, custom mantle, baseboards, window and door casing . Finish carpenters are categorized into the trade of woodworker. It is not the trim carpenters responsibility to paint.

Interior Painter: one who prepares and paints interior surfaces such as walls, failings and trim. 

Responsibility of the Painter

The painter is responsible for the mixing of the paint; keeping a ready supply of paint. The painter would use his experience to determine a suitable mixture depending on the nature of the job. In modern times, the painter is  responsible for preparation of the surface to be painted, such as patching holes in drywall, using masking tape and other protection on surfaces not to be painted, applying the paint and then cleaning up.

Duties of Painter:

Professional painters are responsible for all preparation prior to painting. All scraping, sanding, scuffing,wallpaper removal, caulking , patching and stain removal. Painters are also responsible for filling nail holes or any defects , cleaning the surface, taping, preparation and priming are considered to be done by the hired professional painter. If you have not hired a painter I can provide you with a recommendation.

For the customer that plans on painting the following is a detailed article on how to paint moldings. 



Below are pictures of a typical wainscoting job before 


Before preparation for painting
Before prep


Back to top

%d bloggers like this: