How To: DIY Craftsman Door Casing and Easy Corbels

Casing A Doorway And Adding Corbels: Upgrade from builder basic by installing a DIY craftsman door casing with easy DIY corbels.

 Hey All!  Corey here from Sawdust 2 Stitches!  We have recently  moved and I have found my self up to my elbows in casing and trim work!  As much work and as tedious as it can be,  I am ALWAYS amazed at how much it can add to a space!  Seriously,  there was nothing wrong with this entry before,  it was in no way an eyesore, but as soon as it was cased out it became a gorgeous feature. So,  if you are looking to add character AND value to your home,  look no further. THIS IS IT! 

Adding Casings And Corbels To A Doorframe | Upgrade from builder basic by installing a DIY craftsman door casing with easy DIY corbels.

How to Install DIY Craftsman Door Trim and Easy Corbels


Watch the video first:


Tools Suggested:

  • Miter Saw
  • Table Saw 
  • Nail Gun 
  • Sander 
  • Mallet 
  • Pry Bar 

Supplies Used:

  • Nail Hole Filler 
  • Sandpaper
  • Caulk/ Caulk Gun 
  • (4) 1″ x 2″ Boards 
  • (9) 1″ x 6″ Boards  (read all of tutorial before purchasing supplies because some board widths are apt to change) 
  • (2) 1″ x 4″  Boards 
  • Liquid Nails 


Casing A Doorway By Sawdust2stitches For Remodelaholic

Installing the Door Casing

Step 1. Remove Baseboards 

 Out with the old and in with the new!  I wanted the door casing to run directly  into the floor and have the baseboard butt directly into the casing. In order to achieve this,  I had to remove the base boards around the base of the door frames.  Nothing a pry bar and a hammer can’t handle in a minute or two! 

Casing An Entry By Sawdust 2 Stitches For

Step 2. Interior Top 

 Next we are ready for the interior casings. You will need to measure the interior with of the door frame. 

In my case the width was 5″ wide.  So I bought a 1″x 6″ board so that I could rip it down on the table saw to be the correct size.  (You will need to do this for all three interior faces of the door frame.)

Once you have the board cut to the correct width you will need to measure and cut the correct  length. 

The width of my doorway was 75″, so I cut down my newly customized board to 75″.   For good measure do a dry fit and make sure the board fits before proceeding…

If it fits we are good to go!  I slapped on a very liberal amount of liquid nails to the back of the board. 

2016 09 28 18.00.37

 Once it is all adhesive-d up we are ready to install.  Granted there is plenty of glue to hold it in place, I really don’t have that much patience or  arm muscle endurance to wait for glue to dry.  Therefore I reinforced with 2″ 16 gauge nails using a nailer.  Worked like a charm. Casing A Doorway With Sawdust2stitches For

Step 3.  Interior Sides

Once the top board is in place we are ready to move onto the sides.  Same routine as “Step 2.” but , obviously it will be on the sides.   

 Casing A Doorway For 1 1

Casing A Doorway With Sawdust2stitches

Step 3.  Exterior Sides 

 Now we are ready for the exterior boards!  Again I used 1″ x 6 ”  primed fingerboard.  

 Here is the thing you will want to be aware of.  When installing, I offset the new boards by approximately  3/8″.  Basically  you will want the interior trim’s side exposed about 3/8″.  This  creates a nice clean looks and gives you are little wiggly room for any discrepancies. 

Keep this gap in mind when you measure the length of your boards.  You will want to create that same spacing where your side board meets the (eventual) top header. 

Basically if you are measuring from your floor to the inside of the top board, you will want to add another 3/8″s  to your board.  (Example:  My floor to top board measurement is 108″,  in order to create the same gap all the was around I need to cut my (new side) board at 108 AND 3/8″s. 

Casing A Doorway By Sawdust 2 Stitches For


Once you have all the math work done, install the same way you did for the other boards.  Glue, nail, yadda, yadda. Casing A Doorway For

Keep in mind I am only  showing one side of the entry in this tutorial,  make sure you do both sides of the entry,  or it will look a little funny. 

Step 4. Build/Install  Header 

 Next the header!  I used primed 1″x 2″  finger boards (x2 for each header)  and 1″x 6″ primed finger board (x1 for each header)

In order to get the measurement for the 1″x 6″ board you will need to measure from the outsides of your side casing.  ( See image below)2016 09 29 13.46.56

  The 1″x 6″ board will be the same measurement as your above measurement.  

 The 1″x 2″ boards will 1-1/2″ longer.  (For example my 1″x 6″  is 85″ long, I will then cut my 1″x 2″ boards at 86 1/2″)  This will allow for a 3/4″ overhang on both ends.  Simply apply a little wood glue to  the outside ends of the 1″x 6″ boards and  press the 1″ x 2″ board in place and then reinforce with a 1-1/2″ nail .


Casing A Doorway By Sawdust2stitches For

 Next  install the header in the same manner  you did the other boards.  Apply liquid nails, and then reinforce with 2″  16 gauge nails.  

Casing A Doorway By Sawdust2stitches For

Again,  don’t forget to do this to both sides of the entry,  or your guests will have another reason to look at you wonky… I kid I kid. 

Step 5.  Trim Out the Base 

 The only reason  I needed to trim out the base, is because of our newly  installed flooring.  The gap  at the base was too wide,  in most cases you will be able to butt right up to the floor with no need for trim. 

IMG 4158




Building and Installing the Corbels

Watch the video here and pretty please give it a thumbs-up, subscribe to our channel, and leave us a comment about where you’d like to put these corbels in your home!


Step 6.  Decorative Corbels (Optional) 

To make the corbels, I used 1″ x 4″ Primed Finger boards.  Each corbel will need (x4) 24″ boards. (So a total of 8 if you are making 2 corbels.) 

Using a table saw I cut all of my boards edges on a 45 degree angle. 

 Making Corbels By Sawdust2stitches For  Once one side was complete, I rotated and cut a 45 degree angle on the other edge. DIY Corbels By Sawdust2Stitches For

 When put together these will theoretically  make a hollow rectangle.  DIY Corbels By 2 Sawdust2stitches For

When assembling them I used an instant set glue.   
 2016 09 30 18.54.28

Once the glue is completely set,  cut  both the ends on a 45 degree angle.  I made my corbels 24″ from long point to long point. 

Casing A Doorframe By Sawdust 2Stitches For

As a decorative touch I added 1″x 4″ boards to beef up the corbels.  DIY Corbels For A Modern Farmhouse By For  

In a perfect world, all of the door frames and walls would be square.  Alas, they are not.   Because my walls are a little wonky, I needed to install my 1″x 4″ boards directly  to the door frame. Again, I glued and then reinforced with screws. 

2016 10 01 11.08.25

 Now I was ready for the corbels/supports. I applied a little glue to the ends of the 45 degree angles, and positioned them centered on the already installed 1″x 4″ boards.  Once they were in position I “toe-nailed” (nailed them at an angle) through the ends of the angles directly into the  secured 1″x4″ boards.   Once these are installed Decorative Casing And Corbels By Sawdust2stitches For


Step 7.  Prep for Paint 

  Next I needed to prep for paint.  Time to get rid of all the unsightly holes!  To fill the topical holes I used a basic painter spackle/putty. 

2016 09 30 14.54.53 Crop

 Once the filler had completely dried I did a once over with a finish sander. 

Casing An Entry By Sawdust2Stitches For  Last thing I needed to do to prep for paint was caulk all the seams. The odds of all the boards meeting up PERFECTLY are slim-to-none.  So don’t beat yourself up about it,  caulk can be your best friend!  It will make any unsightly  gaps completely disappear.  Abracadabra!

Casing A Doorway.

 Now all there is left to do is slap some paint on this sucker. I used “Ultra Pure White”  by Behr in a semi-gloss  finish. 

Casing A Doorway And Adding Corbels



Want to see what else I have been up to in our new home ?  These are some of my favorite new additions! 

 Take Luck,


Sawdust2stitches How To Create A Realistic Faux Brick Wall Out Of Paneling.
Faux Brick Wall 

Crate Dresser By Sawdust2stitches
Pottery Barn Inspired Crate Dresser 

Diy Door Casing And Easy Corbels Tutorial @Remodelaholic

More ways to update builder basic doors and windows:

add a faux wood beam doorway

install craftsman window trim

build a window cornice

plus more ways to update flat and bifold doors


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Corey is the voice and grunt labor behind Sawdust 2 Stitches, she freely professes, that she has a problem... She CANNOT leave well enough alone.
She can typically be found hunched over a sewing machine and/or covered in sawdust. All in the effort to create a perfect balance of aesthetics and practicality in her home.

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  1. NOT a corbel. Tis a bracket! Yet another MericanMistake. A Corbel protrudes from awall and tkes the force of a beam into and down the wall.

  2. This is a perfect tutorial. A question: In step 1, the inside of the opening of my door way varies from 4 3/4to almost 5.when I Rip the board, what measurement do I use?? Any I other advice? I am using traditional style trim due to it being throughout the house and it “mirrors” the French doors to my library and symmetry will be important

  3. I love your paint colors. Would you share your white color and your living room and kitchen wall colors?

  4. I did this to some doorways in our home but I chose to remove the sheetrock around the opening because I didn’t want to narrow the opening. More work for sure!