Oh, how we love original features!
Every Sunday in bed with my coffee, trying to summon the courage to go for a jog, I have an internet half hour. Kittens, puppies, ambitious weekend recipes, new environmental hacks… Yes all of it, most Sundays. There is another constant though: architecture and interior design.
Whilst my instinct would naturally draw me towards 1960 California aesthetics or the stunning low impact projects of French geniuses Savin and Jacques Couëlle, I do also linger on more traditional Georgian designs.
So what defines a Georgian house? This elegant architectural style spans about 120 years, from 1714 to 1835. On the outside:
Townhouses on three or four floors often arranged around rectangular or square gardens;
They have sash windows with small panes and tall windows on the first two and smaller windows on the above floors.
Symmetrical façades with tall windows to allow in natural light.
Geometry and proportion throughout the house.
Main entrances to one side topped by beautiful fan lights.
A stucco-front in a plaster material that covers the construction material beneath.
Decorative railings to the front.
On the inside:
Interiors in which all aspects of the layout are carefully balanced, rooms on each floor are geometrically proportioned, normally one at the front and one at the back, with the staircase to one side and chimney flues within walls shared by two houses.
The rooms on upper ground and first floors have the highest ceilings, with the lowered ceilings to lower and upper floors reflecting the hierarchy of rooms within the house.
Kitchens and pantries are located in the basement..
When I really do feel like daydreaming I go on to see the prices. Oh oh. Not only are they more expensive than modern properties, they are also much more costly to run.
Some of the features I love to look at are fan lights, doors and sash windows. I find that the elements which allow light interchange between in and out are often the most important in house designs.
Plus, the door is really the calling card when you go somewhere, the “hello, how do you do?” of a home; after all, you never get a second chance to make a first impression.
And windows are there to frame (hopefully) lovely views.