Three major categories of exterior trim, or moulding, include gingerbread trim, dentil molding, brackets or gable pediment. A home's trim typically mirrors or augments the pre-existing architectural or stylistic elements of the building.
Gingerbread trim shares significant aesthetic elements with the Victorian style of architecture. This rose in popularity with the advent of the powered scroll saw and lathe, which allowed craftsmen to create the swags, brackets and teardrop pieces typical of the style. Houses with prominent porches, balconies, gables or similar features are well-suited to this style of exterior trim.
Dentil molding is a more classical form and considerably less ornate than gingerbread trim. It generally follows a home or building's roof line, but it can be used in a variety of applications. The trim consists of a series of rectangular blocks, which lends itself to classical-style buildings -- especially those with angular roof lines.
Brackets refer to a architectural element rather than a style of trim. As opposed to gingerbread trim or dentil molding, they are installed where the roof meets the wall. They serve as an accent piece and can often be much more subtle than continuous molding or trim. Brackets come in a variety of styles, which make them versatile when trying to match a pre-existing architectural style.
Gable pediments bring attention to the peaks of a roof line. Similarly to brackets, they can be found in a variety of styles.