It is accepted without question by many persons that borders are a decorative necessity. So far is this from being the case that one should carefully consider whether they are needed before using them at all. If employed they should be good in design, not more than four inches wide for the ordinary room, and with straight edge. Cut-out borders destroy architectural lines to no purpose. Occasionally borders are of value in the less formal rooms for the carrying up of the dominant colour upon the wall (Plate 76), but usually there is no particular reason for the strong marking of the dividing line between walls and ceiling. If it is felt that a greater finish be required, a simple cornice-moulding is the better device. This is quite commonly simply a picture rail set just below the edge of the ceiling, leaving sufficient space for the picture hook to go over the rail. If the woodwork is dark the rail may also be stained dark and this gives a "snappy" appearance, which is sometimes desirable if there is little interest in the remainder of the wall.

This placing of the rail is a thoroughly good one when the ceiling is low, but otherwise the necessarily long picture-wires are apt to give a "stringy" appearance, and if this is the case it is better practice to set down the picture rail fourteen to eighteen inches from the ceiling (Plate 76). The finish thus given is sufficient and no other is really necessary.