Arts and Crafts Architecture
If you’re familiar with architectural and artistic terms you’ve probably come across the words “arts” and “crafts”. The origin and popularization of this term can be traced to the rich histories of both the British and American people. The architectural style that emanated from the arts and crafts movement is one of the most popular among home builders today.
Perhaps you’d like to know more about this architectural pattern. If yes, keep reading. All that you need to know about this style has been explained here.
How Did the Term “Arts” and “Crafts” Come To Be?
Arts and Craft began with the late 19th-century British and American movement that was centered on reviving handicrafts and reinstating it as the dominant style of production at that period. The movement was a rebellion against industrialization and mass production, which was very popular at the time. It was an urge to return to and embrace the locally handcrafted pieces of skilled men instead of factory-produced ones.
The Pioneers of Arts and Crafts Architecture
One of the pioneers of the Arts and Crafts Movement in the 1880s is the English reformer known as William Morris. This poet and activist had read some works of John Ruskin, who was an art critic and had been inspired by John’s description and praise of Gothic architecture. Therefore, because he and others had had enough of the Victorian architecture that reigned during that time, William organized a group that advocated for a return to the practice of the pre-industrial, handmade society. Once he set up his company in 1861, William’s goal became to make and supply beautiful custom made furniture and materials to the masses.
Eventually, the movement found its way to America. During the early years of the 20th century, Gustav Stickley, a renowned American Furniture maker, championed the arts and crafts movement in the country. Being both the founder and editor of the “Craftsman” magazine, Gustav sold house plans at affordable prices to people all over the country. As a result, the term craftsman was a word that came to be associated with any home that was built using the blueprint from Gustav’s publications. Today, however, the term refers to homes designed and constructed in the arts and crafts style.
The Bungalow House
One type of building that many people tend to link to the art and crafts movement is the bungalow. According to Stickley, bungalows will allow middle-class families to have a taste of serious architecture. Stickley believed bungalows to be a great combination of handmade artistry and uncomplicated designs which could all be accessed with only about $900. Also, because this style is quite easy to construct and less costly to manage, many people opted for it. Through the contribution of other people like Frank Lloyd Wright, the Greene architects, and Hermann Muthesius, Craftsman homes grew in popularity from New York to California, to Chicago, to the rest of the nation and beyond.
However, the craftsman style homes and, of course, the bungalow eventually decreased in popularity when a new style, the ranch-style, came to be after the Second World War. Even with this, the craftsman style has never lost its place in people’s heart. Today, the style is slowly reemerging and gaining popularity once again.
Key Features of Arts and Crafts Architectural style
Built with natural materials
This style focused mainly on the use of natural materials to make the objects and adornments for the building. Materials like original wood, native stones, bricks, stucco, and others are mostly used.
The overall construction style of craftsman homes is traditional. Most times, materials like concrete floor slabs and bricks are used for the construction. Besides, the houses are inspired by the domestic tradition of the people.
Built-in furniture and light fixtures
One of the defining features of craftsman homes is built-in cabinets and furniture. Therefore, furnishings usually came as part of the home architecture itself. The house came with light fixtures as well. By including built-ins, spaces are used effectively, economically and creatively.
You will always find a fireplace in the living room of an arts and crafts home. This fireplace is usually designed to be the center of attraction in the whole room. This detail used to symbolize family during the Arts and Crafts movement years. Therefore, most homes include a large fireplace in the living room as well as a big exterior chimney.
Craftsman style homes feature covered porches which are supported with thick round or square stone pillars
The beams located both inside the house and on the porch usually are exposed
A lot of emphases is placed on handicraft when it comes to this architecture style. The in-built furnishings, as well as other details of the building, is known to be made skillfully by hand.
Open floor plan
This style favors large open floor plans and rejects the tiny, closed-off structure of Victorian homes.
Clarity of form and structure
Because these houses have simple designs, their structure and styles are usually apparent. The design is focused on the actual, with elements inspired by nature.
Popular Craftsman Homes
Craftsman farms in Morris plains
This home was a getaway center for Stickley and is furnished entirely with his crafts
Francis Court in Pasadena
This craftsman home belonged to Sylvania Marston, who was an architect. He built this home to create a solution to the density problem.
The Gamble House in Pasadena
Being an 8,200-square-foot Arts and Crafts Architectural style home, this building was quite impressive. It was constructed by two architect brothers, Charles and Henry Greene in 1908. Every detail was made skillfully and artfully.
Craftsman House Floor Plan Hunting Tips
If you’re thinking about buying a new bungalow or Craftsman home, you may want to check out California. This city has the most number of craftsman homes. Areas like Pasadena, California is known to have many homes made in this style
The west coast is a great choice when it comes to searching for craftsman homes. Why? It is because many of the development in the West started when this style began to reach its peak in popularity.
Besides, California presents the best climate to live comfortably in art and craft style home. The covered porch, large deck, and the beams are ideally suited for the kind of weather condition that California has.
Chicago is another place where your search for craftsman homes can take you. Rather than having an open porch, many of Chicago’s craftsman homes have something similar to sunrooms. This is because of the chilly waters. If you look all over the city, you’ll surely find many homes designed in this style, especially cities established around 1900 and 1930.
Apart from their structural beauty, craftsman architectural style homes are easy to build and maintain. The house will likely not require too many repairs. Even though the style has existed for a long time, it never looks dated or old. This is all thanks to its elegant and straightforward patterns. Changes can be made quickly to suit your tastes. Besides, their designs and craftsmanship are top-notch, and this is why they are precious. There is definitely no reason why you shouldn’t experience living in a craftsman home.