The Royal Exhibition Building in Carlton, Melbourne is an iconic building that was first constructed for the international exhibition held in 1880. Designed by Architect Joseph Reed of Reed and Barnes, the hall was originally surrounded by an array of annexes, with one of the annexes housing Melbourne’s first aquarium. His grand design was influenced by Rundbogenstil, a round-arched architectural style that combines elements from Byzantine, Romanesque, Lombardic and Italian Renaissance buildings and the design for the dome was influenced by Brunelleschi’s 15th-century cathedral in Florence.Decorative mouldings and architectural features abound. This magnificent building has served the city of Melbourne in many guises.
Original building with annexes.
In 1901, the western annexe was converted to accommodate the Parliament of Victoria. In 1912 the Great Hall was the venue for the first Victorian Motor Exhibition, featuring parts, oils and the latest in imported vehicles. Seven years later the Great Hall was commandeered to be a hospital during the Spanish Influenza pandemic. Home Shows, first held in 1936, were popular with Melburnians, keen to see the latest trends in home and garden design. The Melbourne International Garden Show is still held at the Exhibition building and surrounding gardens annually.
Floral exhibits in the Great Hall.
The first exhibitions of the Australian War Memorial were held in one of the annexes and trainee technicians from the Royal Australian Air Force were actually housed in the Great Hall during the Second World War.
Following decades in which the building was used as a venue for charity dances, state receptions, musical pageants, evangelist missions and balls it became dilapidated and neglected with little consideration given to its historical value. In 1985 restoration work commenced and in the 1990s the building came under the care of Museum Victoria. It became World Heritage listed on 1 July 2004, after a rigorous international assessment process by the UNESCO World Heritage Committee. As the only 19th century Great Hall to survive largely intact, still being in its original landscape setting, and used as an exhibition and event venue to this day, it is of enormous architectural value to the people of Melbourne.
Apart from supplying lightweight decorative mouldings for new builds the Finishing Touch are sometimes asked to replace decorative mouldings that have been supplied by other suppliers but have failed. For example, they were once asked to manufacture and install architectural mouldings for a new home because the exterior mouldings that had been installed were not level and didn’t follow the construction lines of the house, with joins visible and the mouldings not meeting. Corners were broken and the previous repairs were poor and patchy. This unfortunate experience for the owners illustrates why builders should take care in selecting their decorative moulding supplier. This was not an isolated incident, the Finishing Touch have been called upon regularly to replace faulty decorative mouldings on homes.
On another project the Finishing Touch were asked to supply decorative mouldings to match and blend with architectural mouldings already installed during the original build. The Finishing Touch were able to match the mouldings and manufacture decorative mouldings that would blend in and complement those already on the house.
To ensure all builders can have confidence in the adherence of lightweight decorative mouldings on their builds the Finishing Touch are now supplying the DAP Touch’n’Seal system.
It’s the fastest moulding install method available with a drying and full grab time of only 3-5 mins (depending on humidity levels). Compared to most other polyurethane foam based products, which take 10 mins or more to dry, this is a faster system and has been proven to be reliable, strong and long lasting. The DAP Touch’n’Seal system has proven popular with builders since the Finishing Touch began supplying it directly late last year.. It’s fire rated and can also be used for polystyrene foam cladding walls and as a gap filler around cables and pipes on building sites.
Columns have long been used not only structurally, but also decoratively, and are associated with grand buildings. The Parthenon is one of the most famous examples of a colonnade of columns that create a grandiose affect to the onlooker’s eye. When columns were made from stone and then concrete they were only constructed in stately buildings, due to the cost and effort.
The humble residential home was not often decorated with grand columns at the entrance.
There has been a revolution in the construction industry in more recent times with the introduction of decorative mouldings made from a lightweight material. These lightweight mouldings are easily transported to the building site and simply attached to the building. A far cry from the original mouldings that were mixed onsite and created by craftsmen in decorative designs. Those designs are still available but are pre-moulded and delivered. The most commonly used designs these days are simpler, but if a more complex design is desired, these can be specifically custom designed by the Finishing Touch, suppliers of lightweight decorative mouldings
The Finishing Touch are renowned suppliers of quality decorative mouldings for columns. During the construction stage a thin metal or wooden post is inserted into the building for the columns; the lightweight column mouldings are delivered in two halves and adhered around the post. Columns are available in round, fluted, square and tapered shapes. Caps, capitals and bases are also supplied by the Finishing Touch in a variety of patterns.
These days many modern homes boast a stunning entrance featuring columns, creating a stately presence on the streetscape.
Example of French Provincial decorative mouldings.
Eight arches with architraves originally adorned a heritage, commercial building, the Queensberry Hotel, situated on the corner of Queensberry Street and Swanton Street, Carlton. At one stage they were removed but recently the decision was made to restore them and the Finishing Touch were called upon to supply their quality architectural mouldings. They supplied the restoration with 27 lengths of 3 metre architrave mouldings, in a style similar to French provincial, model # WDG8XY, sized 120mm x 50mm. These decorative mouldings were used to form the one metre diameter arches. They also supplied a DAP adhesive and sealant.
A French provincial, two storey, fifty square home recently built in Strathmore boasts an elegant façade with the addition of exclusive French provincial decorative mouldings from the Finishing Touch. A beautiful finish was achieved with 58 metres of French provincial parapets, model # P4200, sized 200mm x 195mm, 8 metres of French provincial parapets with dentals, model # P6240, sized 240mm x 220mm and 34 metres of French provincial quoinings, model # Q300, sized 320mm x 30mm. Further decoration was added with 6 metres of French provincial plinth, model DGPL400, sized 400mm x 55mm.
The windows of this Strathmore property were decorated with French provincial architraves, model # W1100, sized 100mm x 45mm, 23 metres of French provincial windowsills, model #WSR15, sized 135mm x 185mm. Adding further glamour to the façade was one large arch for the balcony window and four small arches for windows at the front. 8 metres in total of model #W1100, sized 100mm x45mm was supplied for the arches.
We are so happy with this product that we want all our customers to have it! After five years using the DAP Touch’n’Seal system exclusively we, at The Finishing Touch, have concluded it is the only polyurethane foam product we recommend for our decorative architectural mouldings. It will be available for sale in November through The Finishing Touch and we are currently taking orders.
And why do we recommend DAP Touch’n’Seal? It’s the fastest moulding install method available with a drying and full grab time of only 3-5 mins (depending on humidity levels). Compared to most other polyurethane foam based products, which take 10 mins or more to dry, this is great news for builders where time means money. And the other alternative, tile adhesive based powders are not really in the race, they are so messy to prepare and take much longer to set.
Touch’n’Seal is versatile too. It can be used for polystyrene foam cladding walls and, because it’s fire rated, it can be used as a gap filler around cables and pipes on building sites. With so many applications it’s a handy system to have on hand, able to be used on wood, masonry, insulating foam boards, metal, plastics and sheetrock.
The system comprises 3 items – Touch ‘n Seal Gun Foam II polyurethane foam, a high-performance, one component, approved Type V Residential Fireblock sealant. Sharpshooter-D Applicator Gun, specially suited for use with Touch ‘n Seal® gun foam products and is the correct one for proper application of the adhesive on architectural mouldings.
And when you’re done PolyFoam Cleaner easily cleans up any foam from hands, tools and applicator guns, dissolving any uncured polyurethane foam. It is important to use this cleaner as it’s the only cleaner designed for the Sharpshooter –D Applicator Gun, keeping it thoroughly clean so it continues to perform.
As there will be limited supply and this is a popular system, we advise you get your orders in now so you can be sure to receive the DAP Touch’n’Sealsystem when it becomes available for sale in November. Contact us to place your order.
The Finishing Touch have just completed a project for an owner/builder on their forty square post-modern home at 14 Jackson Street, Forrest Hill, supplying decorative mouldings.
The house façade was much enhanced with the addition of 17 metres of under gutter moulding, model # PE70, sized 70mm x 70mm, 32 metres of parapet moulding, model # P8200, sized 200mm x 155mm, 7 metres of stringers, model # S1R4, sized 90mm x 70mm and 9 metres of parapet moulding, model # P8250, sized 250mm x 195mm, used around the balcony. The eight windows were beautifully finished with 72 metres of window arches, model # W1100, sized 100mm x 45mm which also extended to the two garage doors and were completed with 22 metres of window sills, model # WS5R2, sized 210mm x 140mm. View the range here.
A 30 square, Victorian style single storey house in Sale was also supplied with high quality decorative mouldings for an owner/builder. The 28.8 metres of under gutter moulding, model # PE70, sized 70mm x 70mm, 17 metres of plinth, model # DGBL300, sized 300mm x 40mm, 15 metres of stringer, model # SGR2, sized 55mm x 27mm, 43.2 metres of small parapet, model # P4125, sized 125mm x 120mm, 24 metres of quoining, model # Q300, sized 320mm x 30mm and 22 corbels will add considerably to the decorative finish of this stylish build. The windows were decorated with 22 metres of flatband used for window architraves, model # M120, sized 120mm x 30mm and 5.4 metres of window sill, model # WS172, sized 172mm x 60mm, was used for two main windows. View the range here.
TheFinishing Touch decorative mouldings suit a range of architectural styles, including–
• Georgian Architecture
• French Provincial Architecture
• Mediterranean Architecture
• Tuscan Architecture
• Art Deco/Modern Architecture
The Finishing Touch can also design and manufacture customised decorative mouldings, using the same technology and manufacturing methods employed in producing the Finishing Touch range of architectural mouldings. Old or damaged decorative mouldings on existing buildings can also be replaced with high quality, long lasting Finishing Touch decorative mouldings.
All Finishing Touch decorative mouldings feature the exclusive trademarked “Driplip” system, which stops water marks and stains defacing the building below the mouldings.
The Finishing Touch supplies the building trade in Melbourne with high quality, lightweight decorative mouldings. Sometimes they will supply to country Victoria or interstate as well. A recent project was for a three year old double storey, forty square existing home located in Jumortoun in country Victoria, which has two double garages. The house upgrade was supplied with 29 metres of under gutter moulding, model # PE70, sized 70mm x 70mm and 29 metres quoining Q300, sized 320mm x 30mm. The ten windows were spruced up with 90 metres of French provincial window architrave, model # W1100, sized 100mm x 45mm, 11 metres of French provincial window sills, model # WS14, sized 130mm x 65mm and 33 metres of French provincial window headers, model # WHIA, sized 175mm x 170mm.
The build for a Post-modern, 50 square home in Doncaster was supplied with 130 metres under gutter moulding, model # PE70, sized 70mm x 70mm, 150 metres parapet moulding, model # M23, sized 265mm x 120mm and 150 metres of stringer, used as a small parapet, model #M24, sized 180mm x 120mm.
A project currently under development in Strathmore is for a French provincial, 50 square home. The build will require 17 metres of under gutter moulding, model #PE70, sized 70mm x 70mm, 60 metres of parapet moulding, model # P1460, sized 160mm x 160mm, 27 metres of quoining, model # Q300, sized 320mm x 30mm. Eight feature windows will be decorated with 40 metres of French provincial window architrave, model # W1100, sized 100mm x 45mm and 11 metres of French provincial window sills, model # WSR15, sized 135mm x 185mm. 5 metres of arch mouldings will also be supplied for 5 arches, each 1000 mm wide span.
Finishing Touch have been contracted to replace the cheap, polyurethane mouldings used on an existing fifteen year old property, which is one of six units, as the old mouldings have deteriorated. 22 metres of custom designed parapet moulding, sized 460mm x 80mm and 6 metres of customised columns, sized 440mm x 90mm have been supplied.