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The Craftsman Design Style

The arts and humanities have always been an avenue to promote discovery and advancement. What typically follows afterward is public discourse and the exchange of ideas. In this case, the Victorian home design standards in the late 19th Century were polarizing. The main point of contention was what many felt was derision towards human labor.

In true American fashion, the American Arts and Craft Movement pioneered the Craftsman-style home, which heavily relies on construction using locally available materials and labor. The Craftsman style has remained inexpensive and straightforward, commonly denoted by fine architectural detail.

Craftsman Style Architecture

The evolution of the Craftsman home was in direct spite of the Victorian houses that had dotted the country. Where the Victorian homes were ornate and extravagant, the Craftsman replaced them with simple, straight, and elegant designs. While the Victorian homes tended to have cramped and stuffy plans, the Craftsman was designed to be spacious and free. 

  • Overextended eaves with exposed beams make for spacious porches

  • Wood siding painted in warm, natural, or earthy colors

  • Dormer windows in the attic level, also accompanied by exposed beams

  • Tapered support posts add character to the large porch

  • The occasional inclusion of stucco or stone accents on support posts

Craftsman Materials

The Craftsman style heavily depends on materials that can be worked on by hand. As such, most of them can easily be gathered from the environment where the home is to be constructed. They amount to natural ones that humans have been using to build homes for many years.

  • Wood is used on almost every available surface, from sidings, walls, and floors to the supports and posts. The woodwork on exposed ceiling beams, fireplace mantels, and more is exquisite.

  • Natural stone can be used to add variety and break up the abundance of wood. 

  • Brick can be commonly found around the fireplace. 

Craftsman Colors and Finishes

Beauty and a warm atmosphere characterize this style, which is why it became a beloved staple in America. Unlike many other techniques with staunch lovers and haters, the Craftsman style has appeal across a wide range of demographics.  

  • Earth tones are commonly used. A variety of browns and creams dovetail smoothly with the wood.

  • The tapered posts continue inside, especially by partitioning the living room from other areas.

  • It's not uncommon to come across pieces of stained-glass that add a touch of class.

Craftsman Furniture and Decor

This design philosophy focuses significantly on craftsmanship with locally available materials. The classic design of Craftsman-style furniture makes it iconic.

  • You can expect wooden furniture with straight edges and near right-angle joints.

  • Wicker or cloth could be used to make up part of the soft materials of the furniture.

  • Bookshelves are a usual feature in Craftsman décor.

  • Ornate carpets could cover some space just next to the fireplace. 

  • A painting or a set of mirrors can be used to add interest to a room. 

Craftsman Lighting

The Craftsman style is geared towards having as natural an appearance as possible. Builders place a premium on having natural light flood rooms. You can expect to see Craftsman-style structures spotting floor-to-ceiling windows in areas that matter. 

  • Hanging light fixtures such as chandeliers are a regular feature across all rooms in the house. 

  • Expect the fixtures to either be boxy or circular with ornaments to add interest around the light. 

  • The clean, elegant design of the fixtures means artisans can seamlessly craft them using metal, wood, and stained-glass.

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