Dado Rails

Dado rails, also known as picture rails, chair rails or surbase, are horizontal moldings fixed to the wall around the perimeter of a room.

These wooden moldings are commonly seen in Georgian, Victorian, and Edwardian houses where period features have been preserved or restored. The height of dado rails is typically around one-fifth of the height of the room, a measurement derived from classical columns. However, there is no strict rule for the height placement, and it often depends on personal preference and the specific design of the space.

Dado rails serve both practical and aesthetic purposes. They are popular for breaking up walls, creating texture, and defining spaces within a room. Additionally, dado rails can be used to protect walls from damage caused by furniture, such as chairs, making them a functional and stylish addition to interior design.

Visual Impact

Dado rails can be used to create a sense of visual interest and dimension in a room. They can be painted in a contrasting color to the wall, adding a decorative element and helping to visually break up large expanses of wall space.

Functional Protection

In addition to their aesthetic appeal, dado rails serve a practical purpose by protecting walls from damage caused by furniture, such as chairs. This makes them a valuable addition to high-traffic areas in the home.

Did You Know?

Dado rails are often used in conjunction with wall panelling to create a classic and elegant interior design feature. When used in this way, the dado rail serves as a horizontal point between different wall treatments, such as painted or wallpapered areas and the lower wall panelling. The dado rail not only adds visual interest but also provides a practical transition between different wall surfaces.

In the context of wall paneling, dado rails can help to define the lower edge of the panels and provide a natural division between the panels and the upper wall area. This can enhance the overall aesthetic appeal of the wall paneling, creating a more polished and cohesive look. Additionally, dado rails can serve a protective function by helping to prevent damage to the lower portion of the wall panels, particularly in areas prone to impact or wear, such as hallways or dining rooms.

Below you will find our collection of dado rails. We have a range of profiles that match our skirting and architrave. Browse our picture rails below or feel free to get in touch if you can’t find what you are looking for.