What is Stucco Molding?

L. Perez-Peterson
L. Perez-Peterson

Stucco molding is a decorative trim frequently found as an interior or exterior design element on commercial and residential buildings. Available in a wide array of styles, most stucco molding is designed to improve the aesthetic quality of the building or room to which it is applied. Stucco is popular in home design and commercial construction for many reasons, with qualities such as durability and customizability maximizing its appeal.

Stucco is the more popular name for Portland cement plaster. Available in natural and synthetic formats, stucco is considered a largely desirable material for use in homebuilding and home decor projects, in part because of its durability in the most extreme of climates. Stucco molding can be modified to appeal to a wide range of tastes for indoor and outdoor home application, and its color-retentive properties make it an appealing option for more selective individuals who want to customize the look of their home.

Along with more traditional molding styles such as crown molding and decorative baseboards, stucco moldings can take on a range of appearances, from delicate and elaborately carved to simple and sturdy yet elegant. Stucco can be used to create window sills, cornices, keystones, columns and pilasters, among other architectural elements. The use of stucco makes just about any design possible without the expense that would be entailed if using wood or stone to create the same look. Stucco molding is manufactured by several companies, many of which specialize in stucco construction materials for both home decor and homebuilding purposes.

Traditional stucco is made by mixing different ratios of sand, cement, lime and water to form a pasty, plaster-like substance. Natural stucco is versatile and can be modified to create various molds and trims for home use. Aside from being a natural insulator, stucco’s texture makes it a relatively breathable material, reducing the potential for moisture to collect within it and create mold.

Synthetic stucco, also known as exterior insulation finishing system, or EIFS, is an alternative to natural stucco. Synthetic stucco molding is quicker and less expensive to produce than its more traditional counterpart. EIFS, much like traditional stucco, retains color and quality well, and can last for quite some time before it needs to be repaired or replaced. Synthetic stucco moldings are composed of Styrofoam, mesh and other materials under a stucco coating to create a lightweight molding that can easily pass for something more expensive.

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