wainscoting design

I am recmoding the dinig room of my 1860's vintage home. I intend to install frame and (flat) panel wainscoting with a simple bevel to echo the style of the interior doors. I plan to have roughly 4 inch wide stiles and 10 in wide pannels.
I have a long wall with a non-centered window. In a perfect world, all the stiles and pannels would be equal, but I have a long wall with a non-centered window. That will probably not work out.
What's the least visible way to cheat?
* Should reduce the size of the end stiles? * All pannels to the right of the window a slightly different size than those to the left? * Have an odd terminating pannel at the end of the wall? * Have odd terminating pannels abutting the window?
Is there a rule of thumb to this?
Thanks,
Steve
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StephenM wrote:

Everything I never wanted to know about wainscoting, I documented here:
http://www.woodwrecker.com/woodworking/projects/wainscoting /
A couple short answers/comments:
1. Rail & stile widths should remain constant. Vary the panel widths (and heights if necessary). 2. The "rule of thumb" is to have panels ratio of height to width be close to the "golden mean" (1.61803399) as possible. If you've got uninterrupted walls, all the panels should be the same width. 3. See the book(s) I recommended. They were a *huge* help and give multiple examples of wainscoting. 4. If something isn't clear in my write-up, let me know and I'll clarify.
Good luck!
~Mark.
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You can be very proud of that room, Mark. Nicely done.
Nonny
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it's just not worth
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following:

Yeah, all but the non-matching light switches. What's up with that? They're not blue! Tres gauche.
-- It's also helpful to realize that this very body that we have, that's sitting right here right now, with its aches and its pleasures, is exactly what we need to be fully human, fully awake, fully alive. -- Pema Chodron
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Larry Jaques wrote:

Blame my wife. I'm not in charge of painting.
Do people *really* paint the actual switches?
Anyway, the room's maroon colored now so the switches still don't match.
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Yes, they do. The previous owners painted grey switches a dark pink to match the wall colors. The paint is coming off now, though.
Puckdropper
--
Never teach your apprentice everything you know.

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wrote the following:

I've seen a couple people do that, the silly freaks. ;)

I was just kidding you, but this has been fun. <bseg>
-- It's also helpful to realize that this very body that we have, that's sitting right here right now, with its aches and its pleasures, is exactly what we need to be fully human, fully awake, fully alive. -- Pema Chodron
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Very nicely done!

One question: Its it an optical illusion, or did you make the make the adjacent corner stiles a bit undersized?
It sort looks like all the stiles are 4" wide except 3" for the ones the in corner, but it looks "right" because two full-width adjacent stiles would look to chunky.
Then again it could be just a perspective illusion.
-Steve
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StephenM wrote:

Good eye. You are correct. Although, if I recall correctly, stiles/rails are closer to 3" and I lost 3/4" in the corners due to butting them to each other. Personal preference, either would probably have looked ok.
Same thing goes for my approach to the panels under the window. I couldn't find the "expert opinion" so I made it up as I went along.
Another approach might have been to keep the stiles full width in corners and add some detail, like a bead, down the corner.
~Mark.
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Rule of thumb would be to look for balance. Without a full understanding of the situation, my guess is to treat the window section so you have the edge of a panel at each edge of the window. Under the window can be divided equally to any size panels. If the off center is not too dramatic then equal number of different sized panels to each side of the window. All rails and stiles should be same size. If window is way off center, then try to divide in an extra panel on longer side.
If the off center is just in a bad place so the side with extra panels requires dramatically different sized panels, then I would consider making all panels exactly same size with one odd panel or extra wide stile farthest from the window.
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On Tue, 6 Jul 2010 15:03:28 -0400, "StephenM"

1) Remove uncentered window 2) Increase the opening until it is centered 3) Install lovely, new, larger window. (Or move the opening, which entails inside and outside wall remodeling/repainting/residing.) 4) continue the standard width wainscoting.

Whatever the existing little lady and future realtors/little ladies will allow. It can affect the resale value.
-- It's also helpful to realize that this very body that we have, that's sitting right here right now, with its aches and its pleasures, is exactly what we need to be fully human, fully awake, fully alive. -- Pema Chodron
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How about two sizes of panels?
Two big ones with a smaller one centred between them on the longer section and two bigger ones on the shorter section.
There has to be a mathematical formula for this from somebody!
I am recmoding the dinig room of my 1860's vintage home. I intend to install frame and (flat) panel wainscoting with a simple bevel to echo the style of the interior doors. I plan to have roughly 4 inch wide stiles and 10 in wide pannels.
I have a long wall with a non-centered window. In a perfect world, all the stiles and pannels would be equal, but I have a long wall with a non-centered window. That will probably not work out.
What's the least visible way to cheat?
* Should reduce the size of the end stiles? * All pannels to the right of the window a slightly different size than those to the left? * Have an odd terminating pannel at the end of the wall? * Have odd terminating pannels abutting the window?
Is there a rule of thumb to this?
Thanks,
Steve
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Thanks all for the ideas.
It's actually much more complicated than described. The room has 3 doors, two windows an 2 built-in cabinets and a fireplace with which to contend. There are 6 runs in all that require more than a single pannel.
Consensus so far:
1. Don't screw with the stile width
2 Balance and sameness are the goal but it's Ok to get there but there with either and a single odd pannel, tweaking all widths, or going for an equal number of pannels.
While moving a window is actually a reasonable suggestion in new contruction, this is a solid brick home.
The equal number of pannels is not going to work for me. The adjacent wall segments are too dissmilar (roughly 5.5',7.5' and 3.5').
I just have to run the numbers and see what I can to.
On the opposite side ofthe room I have an 8' run bracketed by doors. I will definitely just tweak all of the widths there as there enough pannels to spread out the differences and enough visual separation to hide the differing pannel widths.
Personally I'm not a big fan of the golden ratio. IMO, adherence to and arbutrary coefficiant at least as often as not ends up fighting some other design criteria (either function or some other aesthetic guideline like "all stiles the same width")
Also, I find that it looks very "colonial" to me. My home is of victorian vintage; I find the architectural ratios to be much more elongated in that style.
Once again,
Thanks all, for your contributions.
-Steve
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Thanks for summarizing your approach. This stuff is very interesting to some of us (I don't think I am alone).
I have been thinking about this a bit and I do think cheating the stile witdth at the ends is totally acceptable, especially if you do it symetrical.
Since an end terminates into a corner or maybe a door frame. you can't make it exactly the same width anyway. I would think you could take up or give several inches at each end with a wider or thinner stile without anything that draws the eye away from the symetry of the given run of panels. I think this is even true at an inside corner one wall could have a 3" wide stile and the other a 5" stile and it wouldn't llo odd at ll. Wallpaper has these types of transitions of patterns at corners all the time.
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