What is a craftsman style home?You may have heard of a Craftsman home at some point but never really understood what it meant. These homes proudly use natural, handmade, and simple materials to showcase a unique flair that brings warmth and comfort to guests. To further understand what this means, we’ll give you a brief history lesson. During the 1880’s in England, the Arts and Crafts Movement sprouted up in protest to the coldness of mass production and industrialization. This movement and its ideals centered on the belief that decorative arts should be simple, useful, and beautiful. This idea wanted to move away from mass producing building materials and instead focus on handmade crafts. Natural materials were believed to be more wholesome when molded by dextrous hands. Soon enough this movement made its way to America through Gustav Stickley’s magazine, The Craftsman released in 1901. Cultivated in New York, this magazine provided plans for houses and bungalows alike while stressing the importance of building homes with bare hands and natural materials. Though the use of manmade materials still persisted in America, people understood the importance of machinery. Americans knew that industrialization improved lives. However, that knowledge did not stop the view that handmade materials were more beautiful than machine-made ones. Soon the idea of the Craftsman home spread across America and was a popular choice in the early 20th century. In fact, the most famous example of a Craftsman home is the Gamble House in Pasadena, California. Built for David B. Gamble by Charles Sumner Greene and Henry Mather Greene in 1908-09, this Arts and Crafts Masterpiece is now a national historic landmark. But what about the physical characteristics of a Craftsman home? Here are the typical features you will see in a Craftsman style home: Exterior

  • Low-pitched, side, or front gabled roofs
  • Exposed rafters or beams
  • Decorative stitchwork under the gables
  • Wood or stone siding
  • Full or partial front porches with trellises and support columns
  • Decorative attic vents
  • Stained glass in the outside doors or windows

Interior

  • Open floor plan
  • Glass, tile, brick, stone, wood materials that are usually local
  • Exposed rafters or beams
  • Natural wood finishes
  • Rustic woodwork
  • Lots of windows
  • Stained glass in windows, doors, and cabinets
  • Original or replica decorative touches
  • Use of earthy colors throughout home
  • Handmade details

The goal of the Craftsman style home is to welcome guests into a cozy, pleasant environment. These descendants of the Arts and Crafts Movement showcase the artistic detail and personal touches of a home. Next time you spot one of these beautifully simplistic pieces of work, take the time to inspect creative details that may have otherwise gone unnoticed. 

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