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Victorian - Style of the Week!

The Victorian era was a time of rapid change. Substantial advancements in technologies and a steadily growing wealthier middle class led Victorian home builders to reflect the new world and show off their new affluence.

Victorian houses emerged during Queen Victoria's reign over Great Britain and the British colonies from 1837 - 1901 and were a representation of that specific era. But there are some qualities of Victorian homes that architects still use today which are equated with a home having charm and grace. Inspired by the Industrial Revolution, advances in manufacturing and transportation allowed builders to access better materials, create more complex designs and use colored paints for the first time.

Designers wanted to break out of traditional design and create architecture that was ornate, ornamental and extensively decorative.

Typical Victorian Exterior Traits Victorian houses can typically be identified by the following features:

  • Colorful facades: Victorian houses are immediately recognizable due to their painted facades. The exterior of these homes may be painted in bright pastels or more muted tones with decorative features painted a different color.

  • Two or three stories: Victorian houses are usually two to three stories high.

  • Embellished millwork: Victorian houses are known for the intricately carved woodwork on windows, doorways and eaves. It’s what gives these homes their gingerbread house look.

  • Glazed bricks: For Victorian houses that were made out of brick instead of wood, bricks were sometimes glazed in different colors to add ornamentation to the structure.

  • Eclectic array of windows: Part of Victorian houses’ charm comes from decorative windows. A single home could possess a variety of styles, shapes and sizes including stained glass, porthole, cameo, arched and multi-pane windows.

  • Bay windows: Victorian houses often include a windowed area that protrudes out of the home’s facade.

  • Towers, turrets and dormers: During this time, builders began experimenting with asymmetrical architectural designs. Round or octagonal towers and turrets became a prominent feature of Victorian homes, as did dormers with windows that extended out of the homes’ sloped roofs.

  • Porches: Many Victorian houses include front porches or those that wrap around the side of the home.

  • Steep, gabled roofs: The roofs of Victorian houses are typically pitched with a triangular shape that faces the front.

Typical Victorian Interior Traits

Interiors were also highly decorated and designed for more formal lifestyles. They tended to have closed floor plans with long hallways and staircases. They included a lot of crown molding, window and door trims and stunning 8-16 inch baseboards.

They were built for entertaining with multiple parlors, living spaces ad a formal dining room. Rooms were filled with dark woods, multiple fabrics and artwork. All available space was filled with heavy drapes, rugs, silk and cloth wall coverings.

Adding A Modern Victorian Touch

Today's homes can still benefit from a little Victorian opulence!

- Hilight architectural details that add dimension and interest. Cornice boards, crown molding, and board and batten elements.

- Paint details that are overwhelming or outdated for a fresh new look

- Reconsider a room's original purpose

- Think creatively about layering textures and fabrics


Disclaimer : I have personally researched, purchased and use the products suggested above. I am also an Amazon Affiliate. Some of the links used are affiliate links. By buying through the links I may receive a commission for the sale from Amazon. This has no effect on the price for you.

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