What is a Finial?

What is a Finial?

Working on people’s homes day in and day out admittedly provides me quite the advantage when having conversations with folks about their differing projects.

Not that I am actively seeking some type of superior home improvement edge for when discussions occur centering around home items which need fixing, this just kind of naturally happens as a by-product of being in the industry every day.

One clear example of this is in the terminology that is used to describe certain features of one’s home.

Whereas a client may be used to walking by something for years and not quite knowing what to call it other than “that pointy thingy”, doing what we do has forced me to increase my vocabulary over time if for no other reason other than to know what to correctly order when requesting something at the supply shop, rather than referring to it as “I need to order 2 pointy thingies please.”


A “pointy thingy” that often falls into this category and serves as an instance where a situation like this is logically to occur, is with something called a “finial”.

Finials are ornamental-type objects found at the end, top, or corner of another object.

Finials certainly can be “pointy”, they can, however, be “knobish” as well.

Finials work to accent various areas around a home.

Specific locations where finials may be spotted can vary.


They can be found at the top of a post associated with a set of stairs or fence, they can be located at a decorative point on a roof, and they can be found hanging upside down at a gable end or corner of a home.

If one were to do deeper research on finials they would discover, perhaps surprisingly, numerous stories of how they have been utilized throughout history with applications ranging from military purposes to warding off witches.

Although the finials we often deal with are those made out of wood, many times they are made out of stone, clay, or some other type of building material as well.


Researching places to purchase finials from online will reveal the vast array of styles, shapes, and sizes available on the marketplace, enough to have plenty to choose from if you were looking to add a finial to the posts of a new porch you were constructing or maybe even replace finials that are already existing at your home.

When searching for a finial, whether for a new part of your home that is being constructed or replacing one that you were simply hoping to add a change of pace touch of flavor to an existing part of the home with, and you become stuck or overwhelmed with the sheer number of possibilities out there, bringing the idea up to a designer can be enormously helpful with regard to selecting the finial that ultimately is the best fit for your specific situation and personality.

While finials unquestionably are tiny features of one’s home, these often “pointy thingies” can add a sense of style that when seamlessly incorporated into your home’s design, can truly be reflective of your own distinctive persona.

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