Friday, August 20, 2010

American Architectural Styles And Suggested Colour Scheme Pt 3


Modelled on the frame houses of the early Dutch settlers around New York, New Jersey and Delaware, the Dutch Revival house is a common suburban sight. The style usually features a sloping gambrel roof which jutt out over the facade, and a second-storey front that rises from the roof like an oversize dormer. These revived Dutch Colonials enjoyed their greatest popularity during the suburbia building boom of the 1920s to the 1940s, but variations on the type are still being built.


There's not much of the late Elizabethan about the American suburbs - except for the rambling Tudor Revival homes of the early twentieth century and their later more modest cousins. Thee slate roofed, half timbered houses were inspired by the English Renaissance houses of the sixteenth and early seventeenth century, and featured steeply pitched rooflines and rows of casement windows. Soon the style was adapted to smaller, more middle class suburban homes, though it made use of the same elements- steep roofs, overlapping gables, decorative half-timbers, or stone masonry and stucco exteriors. Tudor Revival was tremendously popular in the 1920s and early 1930s.


In the 1910s and 1920s, when architects and homebuilders in the Northeast looked to the past for inspiration, they tapped into their English colonial heritage. But in areas such as Florida, California, and the Southwest, the heritage was Spanish, and the style it produced was powerfully Mediterranean in flavour. Thick, textured stucco walls, red tile roofs, arched windows and heavy wood doors are all hallmarks of the style, which continues to be popular today, lending design elements to everything from new housing to shopping plazas.

The Garrison Colonial was one of the most popular  of the later Colonial Revival styles, reaching its peak from around 1935 to 1955 (though adaptations of the style are still built today). The hallmark of the Garrison is a slight second-storey overhang with the first storey often clad in brick and the second in wood siding. Many have a gabled side addition that houses either a garage or a family room. 


As American as a backyard barbecue, teh classic split level was born during the post war building boom of the 1950s and 1960s. With a single storey at one end (usually the living room and kitchen) and two at the other (sunken garage and family room below and bedrooms above), the split level was soon a familiar sight throughout the countries as cars opened up farmland to residential development.

This is the end of the series on early American architecture. I hope you'll find this write up useful for the building of your dollhouses.


  1. Thanks for all this info! After seeing all the houses, I still have to say that the Tudor is my Favorite! What I wouldn't give to live in one! Especially the one you have posted:)

  2. Me encanta el paseo que nos estas dando de los estilos arquitectonicos de las viviendas. Muchas gracias por la información.
    El estilo colonial español, me gusta muchisimo
    ¿Se nota que soy española? jaja.
    Besitos, May

  3. Katie, I love old architecture but Tudor does have a special charm. I live in a pre war house and if I can help it, will never move. Old houses are the best :) if you don't mind leaky roofs :).

    May, thrilled to see you here :):) as usual :).