In rooms with hard flooring surfaces, team base shoe molding with baseboards to cover gaps between the flooring and baseboard.
In most homes, base shoe molding teams up with baseboards in rooms that have hard flooring surfaces such as tile, stone, sheet vinyl, hardwood, and laminate. For years, quarter-round molding (an obvious name based on its end view) was considered the base shoe. The only real question was whether you chose 1/2- or 3/4-inch quarter round. But there is actually a wide range of base shoe profiles, or you can make your own moldings—even in a modestly equipped shop.
The small scale and simple lines of most base shoes make it easy to cope the inside corners. After cutting the copes in a roomful of baseboard, it will seem like a quick and easy job. The flexibility of base shoe enables you to bend it to conform with the wavy floors that are almost universal in older homes and still quite common in new construction.
The most important thing to know about shoe molding is that you always nail it into the wall, never the floor.