How to make a drywall arch?

How to make a drywall arch?

A graceful arch is an architectural element that can make any interior refined and unique. A correctly chosen arch design will allow it to become the dominant point in the interior and to collect the entire space of the apartment into a single whole. This article will tell you how to make a drywall arch without the help of professional builders and unnecessary investments..


Arched openings appeared in the East. Gradually, the habit of replacing doorways with decorative arches migrated to Europe. This method of decorating interior passages solves not only the issue of increasing the space of the premises due to the absence of doors in them, but also decorates it, giving the home elegance and style, refreshes the boring interior, introducing an original touch into it.

Having decided to make an arch yourself, you should pay attention to drywall, since this type of material is the easiest to install (after all, serious knowledge and experience is needed to form an arched opening from gypsum or plaster), is available on the market and is inexpensive.

The main advantages of drywall arches are:

  • light weight of the material (arches can be installed both on load-bearing walls and on not very strong partitions, without fear for the reliability of the structure);
  • quick and easy installation;
  • the quality of the material – soft but durable material allows you to experiment when creating a unique style of space and cut out any fancy shape of the structure;
  • masking property. Plasterboard structures in the form of arches allow you to hide technical units and communications in the room;
  • the ability to separate the functional parts of one room;
  • functionality (drywall openings may have niches for books or recesses for indoor plants).


A classic plasterboard arch is a structure installed between adjacent rooms and supported on the sides by columns. Bypassing the usual drywall option, you can create an original asymmetrical shape that emphasizes the modernity of the interior..

According to the shape of the arch, arched structures are classified into the following main types:

  • Roman. The most common type of arch. Its semicircular vault will be appropriate in any interior;
  • square or portal. They make out wide openings;
  • trapezoidal. Also often used in the design of wide openings;
  • ellipsoidal. This view is similar to the classic design, but with a large radius of curvature at the corners;

  • gothic. Has an ovoid arch with a pointed apex;
  • Turkish. Pretentious design in oriental style;
  • British. This type is characterized by strict forms. Emphasize the sophistication of any room;
  • Thai or semi-arch. Asymmetrical vault: on one side it is a classic arch, on the other – an arch in the form of a portal.

Modern designers, taking advantage of the excellent property of the material, make completely original solutions. Interior arches are complemented with original lighting and LED lamps. These elements often play not only a decorative role, but also create additional local lighting in the apartment..

In addition to lamps, there is another design technique that adds useful properties to the usual arched opening: the design of shelves and niches both inside the structure and on its external sides. This idea helps to create additional coziness, because souvenirs and family photos can be perfectly placed on small shelves..

For various premises

Plasterboard arches in a modern interior are not uncommon. This architectural element allows you to abandon the usual doors, while creating a finished look of the doorway..

In small apartments, there is often not enough room for open doors. For this reason, instead of a door, a beautiful and laconic arch is mounted in the opening. Such arches act as a kind of border between adjacent rooms, where the door used to be, and in fact expand the free space..

The choice in favor of an interior arch is also made when an apartment redevelopment is planned. For example, the exit from the kitchen to the balcony or from the living room to the kitchen can be designed in the form of an elegant arched opening. At the same time, it is possible to choose the shape of the opening you like (standard semicircle, trapezoid or other asymmetric shape).

When it comes to expanding the space, it would be useful to think about replacing the doors with an arched opening in the hallway and in the corridor. These rooms serve more for connecting rooms than for a comfortable life in them, so here you should not think about preserving space when abandoning doors..

Often, in order to preserve the overall style in the apartment, all doorways are designed in the form of the same type of arches. This is not always true, and sometimes it will even overload the interior. But a couple of arched openings of the same shape in the upper part, one of which is complemented by an interestingly cut drywall configuration on the wall, is a very stylish approach..

How to choose?

Previously, arches were decorated only with palaces and houses of wealthy people, but today this element can be found in any average apartment and even in a modern frame house (a wooden arch is cut down at the time of making the frame of the house itself).

When choosing an arch, you need to focus on its functional component. Arches are active and passive. Passive ones are often found in residential buildings and perform the function of a simple transition, connecting two rooms. Their shapes are simple: ovals, portals, or standard rectangles and trapezoids. Active arches suggest more complex shapes and often include additional decorative elements (shelves, lamps).

If a decision is made to replace a boring metal door with an arch with a rounded top, experts recommend choosing a ready-made model, since in this case there is a question about the reliability of the structure.


In order to make a classic arch with your own hands, you need to understand its structure, to understand what are the subtleties of the technology for the construction of this structure.

Curved arcs form the so-called arch arch. It can have a uniform coating or consist of various parts with gaps between them. You can revive the smooth-hemmed version of the arch of the arch using decorative relief, platbands on the edges of the arch.

The summit of an arch is called the highest point of its arch. It serves as a structural element. Often the summit is also an aesthetic fragment (for example, in eastern-type vaults). He tops down the wings, their ends abut against the supporting structures – beds, which can also be decorated decoratively.

The span of the arched vault is the width of the arc formed by the wings. The height of this arc from the center of the span to the top is called the arrow of the arch. The arched vault usually rests on pilaster semi-columns or goes inside the walls, resting against the spatulas (in this case, this vault is called a hanging vault). The portal is formed by a structure located below the pilasters and blades.

The top, arch vault and portal are the main visible components of the structure. They are called an arched transom. Usually a fragment is drawn up in a single concept. The golden section of the arched structure is determined by the ratio F = (A + B) / B, if B≥A. This ratio in architecture is observed when A = 1/3 B. The arch will have the correct golden ratio if its height is about three times the width of the archway, otherwise you can get the effect of reducing the height of the room and spoil the overall interior.

Detailed calculations and assembly are described in the following sections. But in addition to installation work, it is also worth focusing on finishing work: how to arrange and what is better to sheathe the arch in order to give it a beautiful look.

The following can be used as decorating materials for decorating the arch:

  • plastic, molding – budget and simple options;
  • polyurethane is a flexible material used to form stucco moldings for pediments, ceilings, cornices;
  • decorative stone – artificial or natural natural mineral. Most often used when decorating arches in load-bearing walls or monolithic structures.

As for the plastic, everything is simple here. You can buy ready-made profiles in a store, choose the color you want, or paint yourself and put them on glue without much difficulty..

It is rather difficult to make polyurethane decor on your own, so they often resort to buying ready-made decorative elements. Stone cladding is an expensive but sophisticated option. The most commonly used oil shale or shell rock. Acrylic artificial stone tiles are lighter and can even be used for plasterboard partitions. As for the texture, here, depending on the interior of the room and personal preferences, raw surfaces and polished mirror options for tiles can be used..

How to calculate?

When the task is to independently make an arch, after the shape and size have been selected, the master must first calculate the future product in order to determine the exact dimensions of the parts to be mounted. Do not be alarmed, since the calculations of this design are based on simple school formulas. When carrying out calculations, it is recommended to draw in parallel a sketch of the future product on graph paper, after which the project is scaled to the specified dimensions of the product. As stencils, you can use thick cardboard or a profile sheet of fiberboard. By attaching the template to the surface of the curved vault, you can more realistically assess the accuracy of the previously performed calculations and, if necessary, correct it in time..

This article will consider an approximate calculation of a standard round arched vault for a straight doorway..

The main 3 parameters that should be known to the master are the width of the opening, the height of the future arch and the depth of the wall. There are two main methods of calculation: empirical and mathematical. The master decides for himself which of them will be more convenient for him. The calculation and drawing of the circumference of the arch must be carried out on paper on a scale, 30% less of the real.

With an empirical calculation, you first need to measure the door opening and transfer it to a sheet of paper. The axis of symmetry of the doorway is drawn. Then they take a compass, put its leg on the axis point and make several different circles. The most suitable one is chosen, and the remaining ones are removed with the help of an elastic band..

When calculating the radius of the arch mathematically, the Pythagorean theorem is used:

R = L2 + (R2 – H2)

R = L2 + (R – H) 2

Transforming the formula, they get the following form:

R2 = L2 + R2 – 2HR + H2

Subtracting R gets:

L2 + H2 – 2HR = 0

After the subsequent transformation, you get:

2RH = L2 + H2

Radius R in the end:

R = (L2 + H2) / 2H

Where R is the radius of the circle, L is half of the chord of the arc (the size of this chord is equal to the length of the gap of the arch). H – lifting height.

Due to the fact that the arch being produced will include many fragments (for the purpose of their formation, a board with given dimensions should be taken), it is necessary to first calculate the dimensions of an element made from a board with the selected dimensions. The calculation is carried out from the opposite. It is necessary to calculate the maximum length of the part, which will be made from the existing board with a certain width, taking into account the already known radius. Using the previous formulas, where all the relationships are already known, you need to derive the following equality:

L2 = 2RH – H2

HR – H2

After the calculation is fully performed and the project is outlined, it will be possible to visually imagine how the structure will look like. If necessary, you can re-measure the parameters of the opening and easily correct the calculations, modify the drawing until its appearance completely suits the wizard.

How to cut?

When the project is ready, they begin to scale the product on drywall. Keeping the proportions of the product, the layout of the arch is drawn in the specified parameters. Cut out a piece of drywall to the desired size. To do this, use a special knife along the drawn line and break off the excess pieces of drywall with your hands..

It is necessary to prepare two identical sheets. One of them is placed on a flat surface, a line is drawn through the center. 2-3 cm above the bottom of the sheet, make a mark and fasten a bolt or self-tapping screw. A rope is put on the bolt, the free part of which is tightened into a loop and a pencil is inserted into it. This system (similar to a compass) will allow you to draw an even bend line of the radius of the arch. Having determined the desired radius, pull the cord and draw a bend line with a pencil.

After that, on the second sheet of drywall, repeat the markings in the same way. You can, in order to avoid unnecessary actions, by cutting out the blank of the product on one sheet, put it on another sheet and draw a pencil around the contour of the product. Thus, you get two identical blanks. It is best to cut products using special metal scissors, carefully cutting off all unnecessary.


In order to perform the installation of a drywall arch in the doorway, you will need:

  • drywall arch blanks;
  • metal profiles;
  • dowels;
  • self-tapping screws of two types: 3.5 × 25 mm; 4.2 x 13 mm;
  • scissors for metal;
  • pliers;
  • screwdriver;
  • puncher;

  • roller with needles;
  • construction tape or level;
  • simple pencil;
  • gypsum putty;
  • sanding paper;
  • wall corners;
  • primer;
  • cladding material (optional).

Before you put the frame of the structure, you should prepare the doorway. First you need to remove the door frame and punch the opening up and to the sides to increase the space for the arch. The surfaces of the resulting opening are thoroughly cleaned, smoothing out rough irregularities, removing dust and dirt.

It is necessary to follow the step-by-step installation instructions, then the structure of the arch will be securely installed and fixed in the opening. First, in the upper part of the opening, the guides from the metal profile are attached with dowels. Similar guides are also installed along the walls of the opening (to the level where the curved parts of the arch end).

After that, a product in the form of an arc is formed from a metal profile. Equidistant cuts are made along the edges of the profile with special scissors for metal and bend the product, focusing on ready-made drywall templates. Similarly, two such curved profiles are formed for each of the sides..

You need to install the curved profile as follows: attach the profile vertically to the guides with dowels, and attach it to the drywall using self-tapping screws. In order to assemble the frame more reliably, several pieces of profile are inserted between the arcs inside the arch.

How to bend?

The next step in the installation of the arch is to secure the arcuate part inside the structure. To do this, take a sheet of drywall. Carefully cut a strip according to the width of the inner space of the arch, longer than its inner surface. When measuring the length, it will not be superfluous to leave a margin of about 10-15 cm.

You can bend drywall using plain water. To do this, moisten the lower part of the drywall strip and pierce it with the roller needles. Next, you need to bend and attach this element inside the arch. This is done with adhesive tape and left to dry for a while. Homemade arch frame is ready.

How to putty properly?

After the arch frame is assembled, all the elements are securely fixed, and the inside is completely dry, you can start processing and external design of the structure.

To begin with, the entire surface of the arch is sanded with special paper, all irregularities are eliminated, dust from the sandpaper is removed. The surface of the arch should be smooth. The joints remaining from the installation must be sealed with putty. Before filling the joints, you need to install prepared corner profiles (they give the corners of the arch rigidity and protection from deformation).

These corners can be fixed on top of the putty, but then another layer of putty must be applied on top, aligning all the joints. After the putty dries, the surface is smoothed again with sandpaper. Dust is removed and the entire outer space of the arch is primed. When the soil is dry, they carry out the finishing putty of the structure and grind the irregularities.

How to paint?

When all the dirty work is done, you should move on to the decorative finish..

When choosing a design, one should take into account the general concept of the interior and its style. The fastest and cheapest finishing method is to paint the structure with water-based paint. Such a finish is very practical, because if the wall gets dirty, it can be wiped with a damp cloth, in addition, the arch will be very resistant to scratches. This type of finish is also good because, if you wish, you can quickly repaint the arch yourself..

Interior options

Arched vaults occupy a special place among the architectural details when decorating a room. Smooth lines will bring a mood of coziness to any room and emphasize sophisticated style. If a choice is made in favor of complementing the interior with an arch, it is necessary to choose such a design so that the vaulted structure fits organically into the space of the room and serves as a certain highlight in the interior..

Arches look great in rooms with semicircular window openings. Vaulted structures will complement the interior in which there are doors with a semicircular top. Arched openings are used not only in living rooms and hallways. The kitchen space is also decorated with arches. Here they will serve not only as a decorative element, but also fulfill their functional role (storage systems, niches in the form of arches).

The design of the arch, decorated with glass shelves, looks authentic in itself. If the area of ​​the room allows, glass weightless shelves can be replaced with massive ones made of stone or wood, plywood. They serve as a great place for souvenirs and photographs..

The light framing of the inner and outer parts of the arch looks interesting. Where there is a lack of light, this will be especially useful. This applies to most corridors and hallways. Designers recommend using non-standard shapes of lamps for this in order to give the room an additional sophistication. When decorating arched openings with light elements, do not limit yourself, focusing on the material of the arch, because the backlight will look advantageous both with a plasterboard arch and with a wooden structure.

The most harmonious is considered to be an arch that has absolute symmetry or even smooth lines in the case of the initial choice of an asymmetrical shape. This arch will suit any interior. If it is worth choosing the shape of an arch for an art nouveau interior, it is worth taking a closer look at curved arcs. In the classic interior design, such an arch is not suitable. But here it will be appropriate to look this element with a lot of decor made of plaster decorations in the form of columns and intricate curls..

Acre in the form of an ellipse or a wide portal has a strict but noble appearance. It is simple to perform, does not require frequent alterations and is appropriate in any space..

However, the arch in the interior of a modern room is a rather controversial element. Some view the arched vault as a relic of past centuries. Others praise this graceful piece, hoping it will never go out of style..

And since there is no dispute about tastes, then you should not immediately abandon this design immediately. Even in the modern world of designers, an arch is not a tasteless outdated fragment of a home if it is combined with the general style of the space. The arch has long become a classic. And only its unsuccessful application can spoil the classics..

For information on how to make a drywall arch, see the next video.

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