Breathe In History with Colonial Homes

Many of us prefer Colonial style architecture when it comes to building our homes in our choice. It could be our ‘colonial past influence’ where we were introduced by the British and their architecture type like Indo-Saracenic revival architecture and era of Neo-classical architecture of India.

WORDS: RINKU B

Colonial architecture is clean, precise and inspired by the ancient Greeks and Romans. The Britishers used them frequently, roughly in 17th Century and took their architectures overseas where they created a balance between traditions from home and adaptations in a new land.
French Colonial Architecture
French Colonial homes were predominantly built in the South, they feature higher ceilings for ventilation purposes. This typically include tall windows (called French Windows) on the main and second floor, other characteristic like a raised ‘basement,’ a wide porch (known as the galerie), a brick chimney, exterior stairs, second-floor porch that is often accessible through French doors.

British Colonial Architecture
This type of architecture was defined by a high devotion to symmetry, especially the facade. This symmetry was generally achieved through the placement of doors and windows in the two stories of well-to-do houses. Wood and brick were the most common building materials, largely due to the availability of these materials more than anything else.

Dutch Colonial Architecture
Dutch houses also very frequently featured paired chimneys, one at each end of the rectangular house. They were also noted for the use of a Dutch door, which has a top half that opens while the bottom half stays shut. Usually made up of stone or brick.

Major Characteristics:

Symmetrical Design
One of the most notable features of Colonial-style homes is its symmetrical structure. Most structures are square or rectangular in shape with brick or clapboard siding. The most common designs include either two stories or one and a half with dormers.

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Pitched Roof
Early Colonial style homes were designed with a steeply pitched roof to shed heavy loads of snow. This characteristic survives today and is one of the most recognizable features of Colonial style architecture.

Decorative Entrance Ways
The entrance way of many Colonial style homes is adorned

with a pediment, which forms a decorative crown and may be extended to create a covered porch. Others may be embellished with classical columns or two-story pilasters.

Balanced Window Placement
Most homes feature a window on each side of the entry way and three to five windows on the second floor. The windows are most often multi-paned, double-hung with shutters.