Roots of Style 32 Stories

Roots of Style: Colonial Revivals Span Eras and Forms
Colonial revival architecture, in the context of the American house, first appeared in the last two decades of the 1800s. It is considered among one of the first eclectic styles that proliferated through the first half of the 20th century. Its primary...
Roots of Style: Italianate Architecture Romances the U.S.
You may have seen these tall and proud abodes in your city and thought, “What inspired these elaborate creations?” It is a good question. Italianate is one of three popular 19th-century styles — Greek...
Roots of Style: Queen Anne Homes Present Regal Details
Victorian houses hold a special place in the hearts of house lovers across the United States. Tall, proud and intricately adorned facades provide a delightful dance of visuals. But interestingly, Victorian is not actually a style, nor is it an apt description....
Roots of Style: Classical Details Flourish in 21st-Century Architecture
Ancient Greece and Rome obviously provide the origins of classical architecture. What makes the subject relevant today is the high number of buildings and houses throughout Europe and America that have been designed with the aesthetics that developed...
Clues to Your Home's Architectural History
Many people have some familiarity with architectural eras and styles and how they look on a grander scale. But in most homes, the hallmarks of architectural style are diluted, and the square footage has been reduced to build a more affordable house. These...
Roots of Style: Prairie Architecture Ushers In Modern Design
Does your house hug and hold the landscape and blend into the horizon? It could be Prairie architecture or a derivation. Consider the era. At the turn of the 20th century, America embraced the Industrial Revolution while its population exploded...
Roots of Style: Dutch Colonial Homes Settle on the Gambrel Roof
What is a gambrel roof? Think of a shallow gable and a steep gable, then place the shallow atop the steep. Add dormers, often one long one, to the steep portion, and you have a configuration commonly referred to as Dutch colonial. The gambrel...
Roots of Style: Spanish Eclectic Homes Find a Place in the Sun
When you see a clay tile roof in the U.S., you will likely find a palm tree nearby, for Spanish eclectic architecture dominates large regions of California, Arizona and Florida. The orange and red terra-cotta roofing defines the local architecture, comfortably...
On Show: The Ingenuity of Ancient Architecture
I was a magazine travel editor in a previous life, and one of my favorite places to visit was the Caribbean. It wasn't until a couple of years ago that I finally made a point of asking a local, "Why so many gabled roofs?" And I was told, "They help stabilize...
Roots of Style: The Indelible Charm of American Tudors
They can be found across the country. You may have seen them in older neighborhoods close to the city center, or you may have seen them in semirural areas on large plots of land. They maintain a distinct identity. You may be lucky enough to have grown...
Roots of Style: Midcentury Modern Design
Explaining the current popularity of midcentury modern home design leads us back to that 30-year stretch from 1945 to 1975 — a period of extraordinary economic growth, which produced an appetite for progressive design in everything from clothing to...
Roots of Style: Georgian Homes Offer Familiarity Through the Ages
Familiarity comforts us. It is no surprise that when we choose a home, we often search for the familiar or an association in the context of our families. This could be one reason that Georgian-style houses are still common and popular, especially in the...
Roots of Style: Château Architecture Strides Through a Century
According to a recent study by the American Institute of Architects, Biltmore is America's eighth favorite building. This château-style, or châteauesque, mansion is an indelible image of wealth from the Gilded...
Roots of Style: Colonial Monterey Sets the Stage for Unique Design
You know you have seen them and they appear familiar. There is an unusual small balcony hanging over the front door with one or two French doors opening onto it from the second level. Some of these houses have traditional doors and windows while others...
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