Storybook Cottages: America's Carpenter Gothic Style

Overview

Charming old houses in a uniquely American form are lovingly showcased in this engaging book. Romantic, imaginative, and eminently photogenic, Carpenter Gothic homes feature fairy-tale–like exterior details—steep gables; pointed arches, windows, and doors; elaborate gingerbread trim; and porches—in addition to one-of-a-kind, highly desired interior features that imbue the homes with a wealth of character—arched entryways, bay windows, stained glass, fireplaces, and wooden ceiling beams. The first of the Victorian...
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Overview

Charming old houses in a uniquely American form are lovingly showcased in this engaging book. Romantic, imaginative, and eminently photogenic, Carpenter Gothic homes feature fairy-tale–like exterior details—steep gables; pointed arches, windows, and doors; elaborate gingerbread trim; and porches—in addition to one-of-a-kind, highly desired interior features that imbue the homes with a wealth of character—arched entryways, bay windows, stained glass, fireplaces, and wooden ceiling beams. The first of the Victorian romantic architectural revivals to sweep America during the nineteenth century, the Carpenter Gothic style was inspired by the pattern books of Andrew Jackson Downing and made possible by the invention of the steam-powered scroll saw. Homebuilders created these delightfully fanciful houses in most states across the country. Storybook Cottages highlights both the picturesque exteriors of these homes as well as the incomparable interiors that give them such warmth. Presented are stunning photographs by Paul Rocheleau, Tim Street-Porter, Steve Gross, and Sue Daley, among others, along with illustrative examples from Downing’s pattern books, and black-and-white images from the Historic American Buildings Survey. The text examines the roots of the style, from Medieval Europe and Gothic cathedrals through Inigo Jones, Augustus Pugin, and the Gothic Revival; the role of the American Gothic, from the pattern books of Andrew Jackson Downing and Alexander Jackson Davis (Rural Residences, Victorian Cottage Residences, The Architecture of Country Houses) that inspired the style to the impact of the scroll saw, which allowed local builders to interpret Gothic Revival architectural details in wood, thus creating the Carpenter Gothic style; and the hallmarks of Carpenter Gothic, from sharply peaked gables to board-and-batten siding, peaked windows and doors, gingerbread trim on porches, stained glass windows, and decorated bargeboards, among other features. The primary focus will be on exterior architectural details in homes and carriage houses, but will also include decorative elements of the Carpenter Gothic style, from wallpapers to carpets and furnishings. The text will also discuss historic interiors, adapting the style for modern living, and floor plans, wallpapers, carpets, and furnishings inspired by the Carpenter Gothic style.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“In beautiful photographs, architectural renderings and illustrations from patter books of the time, the author showcases the style’s hallmarks…” ~Victorian Homes
 
"Much more than a visual tour of America's 19th-century Carpenter Gothic homes, this book offers a thorough treatment in both text and images. Architecture writer Montgomery traces the style's history, prominent proponents and hallmarks as well as interiors and furniture, and gardens. The illustrations are lavish and include full page photos from The Historic American Buildings survey and by prominent architecture photographers, period etchings and watercolors, and plates from period pattern books.” ~Book News
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780847836192
  • Publisher: Rizzoli
  • Publication date: 4/5/2011
  • Pages: 224
  • Sales rank: 320,913
  • Product dimensions: 9.20 (w) x 9.20 (h) x 1.01 (d)

Meet the Author

Gladys Montgomery has written features for publications such as Antiques and Fine Art, Old House Interiors, Country Living, Yankee, Country Decorating Ideas, and Country Victorian. She edits the award-winning magazine Berkshire Living Home + Garden.
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