What is a Craftsman-style Home?

By: Architectural Visions

Craftsman-style houses originated around the turn of the 20th century. This style house was part of a greater movement that ranged from home design to landscape design to decorative arts and other creative pursuits. The Craftsman movement responded to the Victorian houses that were so common in the late-19th century. While Victorian-style homes were built to highlight the innovations in the manufacturing industry, Craftsman-style houses were a response that showcased handcrafted work.

Craftsman-style houses resemble bungalows and are known for their charm. Exterior wood trim, front porches and columns make it easy to identity craftsman-style homes.

Gustav Stickley was a prominent pioneer of the Craftsman movement. He was a 20th-century American furniture maker who also created an influential magazine, The Craftsman. The magazine and Stickley’s furniture showcased local materials, simplicity and honesty. The magazine also began selling house plans that embodied these values. These house plans were called Craftsman homes. As these homes were built, this home-style became known as Craftsman-style homes.

Read on to learn more about the characteristics of craftsman-style homes, their geographic origins and the best type of windows and doors for this style of architecture.

Key takeaways for craftsman-style homes:

  • Craftsman homes are known for simplicity, function and being hand-crafted.
  • Craftsman-style houses typically have low-pitched roofs, overhanging eaves and wide front porches that are anchored by tapered columns.
  • A craftsman house focuses on function, and wood accents are a prominent part of the interior.
  • Craftsman architecture was prominent in California in its early inception, thanks to architect brothers Henry and Charles Greene.
  • Craftsman-style homes are filled with double-hung windows and casement windows and are typically vertical, with vertical grilles. Craftsman-style doors are often stained wood and have the same vertical orientation.

Characteristics of craftsman-style homes

Craftsman houses are known for their simplicity. The functional floorplans and architectural details in craftsman homes make incorporating various design styles seamless. In addition, craftsman-style houses have plenty of open space and windows, a small footprint, and are usually short and wide. Read on to learn more about the exterior and interior of a craftsman-style home.

Craftsman-style house exteriors

Craftsman-style houses typically have low-pitched gabled roofs and overhanging eaves. The overhanging eaves result in the craftsman home’s signature large, covered front porch. Thick, tapered columns anchor the expansive porch. Craftsman houses vary in having symmetrical or asymmetrical elements and are only one or one-and-a-half stories high. Window dormers on the second floor are also common.

The exteriors are often painted wood siding and include stone, brick and stucco accents. While the original craftsman homes were painted in earth tones, today’s craftsman-style houses vary in colors. Decorative stained glass windows in craftsman-style houses bring beauty to both the exterior and interior.

Craftsman-style house interiors

Wood features are a hallmark of craftsman-style homes. Original craftsman homes have original wood window and door trim, crown moulding and hardwood floors. In addition to the wood window and door trim, original craftsman homes may include built-in bookshelves, window seats and ceiling beams. Stained glass is also a commonly found decorative element.

Function is an integral part of a craftsman house. An open living room typically connects to a dining space, and a kitchen is located at the back of the house. This openness lets homeowners move around easier and allows more light to shine through. Built-in sitting spaces allow for more guests to gather, and built-in benches are typically found adjacent to the fireplace.

While craftsman houses are more open than the homes that came before them, they still have smaller, more closed-off rooms and a smaller footprint than new construction. In more recent years, homeowners are more likely to tear down the walls in pursuit of an open concept.

Geographical origins of craftsman-style homes

In its early inception, craftsman architecture was prominent in California. Architect brothers, Henry and Charles Greene, brought this house style to the area. However, the craftsman house movement became popular throughout the United States in the early 20th century.

Craftsman-style windows and doors

Craftsman-style homes are filled with various window types; however, double-hung and casement windows are the most common. Craftsman windows are typically vertical, with vertical grilles in the top portion. Stained glass is often included throughout craftsman-style window designs.

Craftsman-style doors are often stained wood so that the stained glass can be the focal point. The vertical orientation and lines are similar to craftsman-style windows.

AVI Windows & Doors

Ensure your craftsman-style home has the windows and doors it needs to complement the architecture by contacting the experts at AVI. AVI is your one-stop shop for craftsman-style home window and door needs, with in-person and online service options. Please don’t hesitate to contact us online or come by one of our Southeast locations and let us help you!

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