Monthly Archives: November 2016

Classical Revival Style Homes

Why Classical Revival Style Homes Are Making a Comeback

With a wide variety of home styles to choose from, architecture from the classical era is one style to look out for. These homes are patterned after building styles from Greek and Roman architecture, and they come with the same elegance and classic look as some of the world’s most famous buildings. If you are looking for a unique home style, consider modeling your home after the classical revival style and incorporating some of the style’s interesting attributes. Tall columns, unique decorative pieces, and wide front porches will surely add the charm you are searching for in a home.

What is the history behind the classical revival style?

1790-1950

An early period of classical revival building began in the late eighteenth century, starting with homes being built mostly in the south modeled after Greek architecture. Many of the columns during this earlier period were square instead of the more modernly common cylindrical columns. Homes were also larger as many of the homes in this style served as large extended family homes or plantations housing many people.The later period of classical revival style homes began around the end of the nineteenth century and featured a combination of Greek and Roman inspired architectural types. More round columns were seen during this time period. The houses built in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries featuring the neoclassical style were also smaller than the houses were in past centuries.

What are the characteristics of the Classical Revival style homes?

Columns

Columns are a popular defining characteristic of homes built in this style. Large columns adorning either side of the front porch are commonplace. Some homes can have as many as 6-8 tall columns on the front, stretching the height of the home. They are often white in color and made of iron, steel, and concrete. Most columns are cylindrical in shape, but some styles mimicking Greek architecture have been known to use square edged columns. Though columns can sometimes be viewed as outdated, a little creative placement and fresh paint colors can make all the difference in terms of adding some modern edge to this classic style.

Intricate Design

Decorative pieces are extremely common in the classical revival architecture. Accessories like doorknobs, porch lights, columns, and the like were never plain and always adorned with period appropriate designs. Brass and iron were used liberally in the accessories especially for a classic look. The entire architecture was devoid of any plainness or simplicity, opting instead for the elaborate and deliberate in all areas of the home to give the entire house a feeling a completion and attention to detail.

Side-gabled Roof

The roofs of neoclassical homes are fashioned after ancient buildings from Greek and Rome. Their roofing structures are almost always side-gabled, which means that the roof peaks into a triangular shape on the sides, usually featuring a window in the center. This gabled structure serves several purposes as it allows run off of rain and debris from the roof itself, and it adds some aesthetic interest to the roof, a feature that is usually a flat and boring part of home design.

How is the Classical Revival style different from other home styles?

Rarity

Unlike many home styles, homes modeled after the classical revival look are somewhat rare comparatively. Most buildings modeled after this era of architecture were not residential dwellings, but instead were banks, churches, and government buildings. This rarity of residential classical revival styled homes does make some sense because homes at the time of the revival were built in a much different style than official buildings were, with little overlap in architectural choices between the two. Not until the more recent half-century have residential homes been the more frequent buildings designed in the neoclassical style.

Intricacy and Purposefulness

As mentioned previously, small and often very intricate designs played a huge role in this home style. Instead of plain roof molding often seen on homes, roof molding and edging were carved into patterns to add visual interest. Design was even added to door frames and archways, leaving an air of upscale planning surrounding the entire building. The homes were almost always built using brick, which was sometimes left as exposed red brick and sometimes painted white to match the bold white columns at the front. In stark contrast to the sleek design of many modern homes, the neoclassical style centers on sharp edges and bold accessories, making it a fun choice for home owners looking to mix older architecture with newer interiors.

What are some examples of this classical style?

The McCallister Home

One well recognized example of this style of home can be found in the Home Alone movies from the 1990’s. The McCallister family home is built in the classical revival style, and it incorporates many aspects of the period. The home has long rectangular windows, a slanted roof, and columns surrounding a generous front porch. The style is grand and welcoming at the same time, which is an important point when dealing with a building that is meant to be lived in as opposed to a commercial building.

The Tara Plantation

The movie Gone With the Wind perfectly demonstrated the beginning of the era of grand architecture that is similarly employed in classical revival homes. The home used in the movie was replicated and is located in the historical section of New Orleans, Louisiana. Built to be an exact copy of the infamous Tara plantation, the New Orleans home boasts the same white and far reaching columns as many homes of its time. It is a large home with big white bricks and green shutters on the windows. It was built in the 1940’s and is a popular historical tourist spot.

The classical revival style is gaining in popularity for a reason. Its grand columns and wrap-around porches are appealing to many home buyers because of their charm and timeless appearance. Homeowners who desire a home with a stately and nostalgic appearance are opting for many features belonging to this style as they search for real estate. If you lean away from modern design and architectural trends, consider the neoclassical revival style as an always welcome alternative. Classical revival style homes have something to offer all tastes and consumers because of their attention to detail and far-reaching historical significance.

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Stylish Characteristics Of Modern-Contemporary Styles Homes

Modern-contemporary houses are for the people who feel joy in observing the gracefully shaped lines and silhouettes of a beautiful building which has intuitive designing. They have an architectural design which is based on the idea of making something that has classiness yet doesn’t lack simplicity and a modern vibe yet has an integration with nature. The idea of modern contemporary homes was brought forward by the modern architects like Marcel Breuer and Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, who escaped the Nazi era and taught at some of the most reputed Architecture and Design Schools of that era.

Main Characteristics of Modern-Contemporary Design

The modern-contemporary style houses are quite unique in their own way. Apart than their unconventional and unusual features, there are some other features in architecture of these houses that make them stand out in their neighborhood, like:

  • 1. Extensive use of glass in windows and panes– The key feature of modern-contemporary style exterior is the usage of ample glass covering on the walls. It gives the house a sophisticated look and at the same time allows a lot of natural light to get in. If the house is situated in some exotic location, the glass also ensures that you get to enjoy plenty of the view.
  • 2. Unconventional or Flat roofs– Another unique aspect of contemporary- modern style homes are their unusual roofs. To keep the roof in contact with the minimalistic architectural design, it is given a geometrical touch to it. While most houses have the typical contemporary flat roof, there are also some unorthodox, geometrically shaped roofs which make such houses a center of attraction in the neighborliness. There are arch shaped roofs, towers like roofs and some unusual funky shaped roofs too.
  • 3. Over- sized windows– The over-sized windows that these homes have is for the purpose of allowing a lot of natural light to get in while ensuring that there is proper ventilation too. These windows maintain the connection of the house with the outdoors which keeps the tone a lot fresher than that of the usual compact houses. Such windows make the house complement the minimalist interiors while adding a dash of elegance to the exteriors of the house.

Several other characteristic features of these houses are little ornamentation, irregular massing and front doors that aren’t very conspicuous. The usage of materials like concrete, vinyl, glass and wood emphasizes the importance of progressive architecture. These modern industrial elements add to the modern day allure of the house while adding to its sleek contemporary design and feel.

The Interiors of Modern-Contemporary Style Homes

The flexible living spaces of a modern -contemporary style home have the benefit of offering a wide variety of choices when it comes to the color palettes, fabrics and other decorations. The interiors of such homes are an epitome of class and elegance. The whole idea of modern-contemporary design is to eliminate the frills and extravagance that were used in the earlier decades. The theme of such homes tends to be minimalist with the furniture and colors used contributing to the theme.

Colors

Considering the minimalist theme of the modern-contemporary style homes, the common idea is that neutral shades are the best pick for the interiors. However, that does not have to be the case. Solid colors like beige and grey might be used for the walls but to add to the intensity of this hue some furnishings and fabrics in primary shades shall be used. For instance, a maroon couch and indigo drapes would bring in some elements of drama to the interiors of a contemporary home without taking away the modern look of the living space.

Furnishings

Most of the furniture used in a modern-contemporary set up is without any intricate detailing or carving. Wooden elements add to the eccentric vibe of such homes. The rich and dark brown tone of mahogany or walnut furniture compliments the modern color palate of the walls. Furniture with unusual geometric shapes greatly enhances the coldness of a minimalist home. Rather than using gaudy decorative pieces in such houses, a simple wall mural or painting is used. This keeps the home looking spacious and prevents any shabbiness.
A combination of elements like glass, leather and stainless steel makes up for the contemporary look of such homes. Metallic elements are a very important addition to modern-contemporary style homes. Although in present day scenario stainless steel takes the top shelf for contemporary home furnishing, highlights of brass in door handles and brushed nickel cabinet handles haven’t lost their charm. Any sleek and shiny metal that compliments the color scheme of a modern home works wonders to enhance the interiors the place.

Examples of Modern-Contemporary Style Homes

  • 1. Farnsworth House: Designed in 1951 by one of the founders of this style- Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, this house is known for its transparency and simplicity. It is located near the Fox river in Plano and is surrounded by lush green trees. Its floating terrace and minimalist setting make it one of the most sought after architectural geniuses of all times.
  • 2. Neutra VDL Studio and Residence: Designed in 1933 by the architect Richard Neutra, this place gets its name from the Dutch philanthropist who was the benefactor behind this project- Dr C.H. Van Der Leeuw. The place was burned down in a fire and Neutra had to rebuild it in the year 1966. The place is well kept till date and the funds for its maintenance are raised by organizing tours and events to this place.
  • 3. Philip Johnson Glass House: This place was designed in the year 1949 by the architect Philip Johnson as a residence for himself. As the name itself suggests, the place is entirely made up of glass with nothing but some wooden cabinet separating the interior spaces of the place. The brick cylinder inside the house has an enclosed washroom inside. Located in New Canaan on a 47-acre property, this place overlooks a beautiful pond. It serves as major tourist attraction till date in that area and is maintained by the National Trust for Historic Preservation.

Modern contemporary homes remain a favorite among people owing to their easy maintenance and flexible living spaces. They suit the needs of the modern day crowd due to the least amount of extravagance involved. Their minimalist designing is very comfortable to blend in with and at the same time it keeps the place looking very high-profile and chic.

Contact Larry Stewart Homes – Expert Contemporary-Modern Custom Home Builders in D/FW

Larry Stewart Custom Homes has more than 30 years of experience building luxury homes in the Dallas/Fort Worth. Give us a call at (817) 402-2154 and we will be more than happy to answer any questions or help you build the home of your dreams