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Use 1/2" pine/oak/whatever, cut 45 degree angles on the sides (so as to 'box' the wood properly), then prime and paint (or stain.)
Usually, 1/2" pine is nailed up (with the sides left square), then drywall is screwed as is cornerbead. This method adds 1" to both dimensions as far as size.
Other than that, you can wrap the columns with Red Streamers, and they'll look like Candy Canes. Paint them white first, of course. (It's just a thought.) This way, you won't lose ANY space. ;-)
My best to ya and hope this helps.
Jay J -Moderator
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