Our original baseboard in our Dining Room was pretty much shot. Painted multiple times it had been cut for electric outlets and was really scuffed from furniture. Some of it was split. It was not salvageable , execpt for 20 feet or so that we are saving for use upstairs. We know from paint anaylsis it was always painted and we know it had a couple of "bands of paint" on it, presumably done by the artisan who did the room stencilling.
Also given the 'upscale nature" of the room we elected to replace the baseboard with new and polychrome it as it had been done when the room was first done.New baseboard provided several advantages, One we wouldn't have to spend days stripping it to get to a clean finish and two, you can not do line work and gilding while woodwork is at floor level.
The baseboard we found is an 7 inch tall molding (our original was 6 1/2). This is the right scale for a room with 10 ft 3 inch ceilings. If you had taller ceilings (12-14 Ft) you could take this molding and combine it with a 4 inch piece to get a larger scale or by painting with the same colors add a second "chair rail type" molding a couple of inches above it so it would "read' like one big molding. This molding is a recycled MDF product and retails for 1.50 a linear foot so its an attractive alternative.
The molding is base ebonized with a band of the light green/blue color and the clay color of the upper walls. There area couple of gilded lines as well to add some 'sparkle' to the room at night. Patiemce is a virtue with this project as it takes several hours to do one 8 ft section. Couple down, 6 more to go. Will keep you posted and with some better photos (all I had was the camera phone) when we do next weeks update after some of it is installed.