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Victorian architecture was at its most popular at the turn of the nineteenth century. Victorian homes were popular because much of the building materials, including detail work, was done by machine and could be easily shipped around the country by train.
There are multiple styles within the Victorian theme. The Stick Victorian has been said to resemble a gingerbread house with its steep gables and detailed, decorative cladding and trims. The Queen Anne style is highly ornate, asymmetrically built with cross-gable rooflines and towers, and highlighted by coquettish detailing and eclectic materials. Queen Anne style Victorian homes were very popular, and originally came painted in a variety of bright colors. The Folk style Victorian is a simplified version of the Queen Anne; it typically had less ornamentation, was built symmetrically, and was more accessible to the middle class. The Shingle style Victorian is less ornate than its predecessors, and is entirely covered with shingles, which are left unpainted to highlight the bold architectural features; such a recessed balconies, towers, and dome roofs. The Shingle Victorian also incorporated more of an open-concept in the living spaces, versus the smaller compartmentalized formal rooms of other Victorians.
Elements of design:
- Wood construction
- Steeply pitched roof
- Textured shingles
- Front porch, towers, recessed balconies
- Multiple stories
- Highly detailed exteriors; ornate trims