Exploring the styles of home architecture
A home’s charm begins with its architecture. Following are brief descriptions of various home styles and their origins. For your convenience, styles are listed in alphabetical order, rather than by date of origin. In Colorado, the major architectural influences present include Bungalow, Ranch, Tudor, and Victorian.
The American bungalow, widely built from 1900 to 1930, is normally 1 or 1.5-stories high with large verandas and overhanging gables that form a deep front porch. The natural building materials are often emphasized or accented.
The Colonial style, the oldest in New England, is distinguished by a massive central chimney that provides fireplaces and heating for the two-story house. A popular style between 1650 and 1775, Colonials were typically built three-to-five bays (or windows) wide with a main entrance door in the center of the home.
Federal architecture is widely used to describe homes built after the Revolutionary War, between 1780 and 1820. The style combines Georgian with more classical Roman architectural elements, such as geometric fireplace designs, four symmetrical chimneys, and a five-bay facade with a central entryway.
The prototypical Georgian, widely used from 1725 to 1780, style is often used to describe Colonial homes. However, these homes generally offer some unique features, including: a square floor plan with a central hallway and four rooms on every floor, a high-pitched roof, intricate use of stone accents, and elaborate interior and exterior decoration.
The Greek Revival period, 1820 to 1860, is typified by rectangular housing styles in white that are reminiscent of ancient Greek architectural. Doorways often are accented by columns with transom windows.
International is an architect-derived style reminiscent of the new European designs of the 1920’s. The style emphasizes simplicity, plainness, and flatness of geometric forms with strong rectangular planes and windows.
Influenced by architecture of the Italian countryside, the Italian style features brackets under the eaves, paired windows with arched tops, and peaked central gables.
Popular from 1870 to 1885, the Mansard style comes from French architectural style and features a steep-sloped mansard roof that rises to a flatter deck. Many details are reminiscent of the Italianate style.
Ranch-style homes are single-story rectangular, L- or U-shaped designs with large windows, simple floor plans, low-pitched gable roofs, and attached garages. These are normally built from natural materials, such as wood or brick.
The shingle style, often referred to as sculptural, is typified large homes with rounded turrets and porches that feature shingles in patterns across surfaces and corners.
Widely built from 1890 to 1940, Tudor homes are distinguished by steeply pitched roofs, decorative wood and stucco, cross-gable plans, and large chimneys.
Victorian (Queen Anne)
Built mainly from 1875 to 1900, This unique style is known for decorative materials, accents, and colors. Distinct features include asymmetrical design, ornate wall surfaces, bay or stained glass windows, gable screens and porches, high ceilings, spacious interiors, and decorative finishing.