We just spent the most wonderful vacation with our dear friends in the picture-perfect town of Wilmette, IL (a north shore Chicago suburb). Most of the homes in the area were built in the Arts & Crafts style of the 1920’s, and the cobblestone streets are lined with enormous mature trees.
When I looked at the houses in that incredible neighborhood, the first word that came to mind was “character.” Each house seems to tell a story, and I was mesmerized as I walked down each street, admiring the homes. My friend’s house is no different…it is filled with craftsman details, perfectly married with modern conveniences. Older homes like these embrace the idea of a relaxed, functional lifestyle, yet understand the importance of beautiful details.
So, what is it exactly that makes these older homes so full of character? And more importantly, how can you capture some of that classic charm in your home? Well, I’ve narrowed it down to a few essential elements of older homes that really make an impact. If you live in a new, builder-basic home, like me, you’ll want to pay attention because chances are your home didn’t come with these “details.”
Craftsman Window & Door Trim
Craftsman houses are known for their beautiful, chunky wood trim around their windows and doors. Many people prefer the bare wood look, but lots of other folks opt to paint this trim white. Both look fantastic!
Changing the trim around your windows and doors is a surefire way to add instant character, and the added trim detail effortlessly improves the look of the room. Not so sure? Just take a look at these beautiful before and after pictures.
I am a huge lover of built-ins! To me, they are like magic…instantly giving a room something unique and special. In older Craftsman homes, you often see built-in units in the dining room, or around the living room fireplace. In my opinion, built-ins are a perfect way to add charm to any room in the house!
Built-ins can be added almost anywhere in your home! You can add a built-in under a window, around a door, along a blank wall, or by transforming a closet. Just take a look at these beautiful and clever built-in ideas.
This is another one of those Craftsman character design details that I just can’t get enough of. Whether it be beadboard, or board and batten style, wainscoting elevates any room to a whole new level. It adds incredible elegance, charm, and a crisp, clean look.
In our previous home, we added wainscoting and Craftsman door trim to our hallway. What an amazing difference that made!
Wainscoting is actually very easy to install, and is perfect for a DIY project. The internet is loaded with tutorials! Let’s take a look at how wainscoting completely transformed some modern-day homes!
Finally, if you look up in an older Craftsman home, you are likely to see beautiful details on the ceiling. From crown moulding, to coffered ceilings, to wood paneling, to medallions around light fixtures…they didn’t neglect the ceiling the way more modern home builders did.
How can you add some beautiful craftsman ceiling details to your home? Take a look at these stunning examples for some inspiration!
So, if you feel like your home might be lacking some character, you might be right! Today’s homes often don’t include the details that make a house feel cozy, interesting, or charming. I hope these examples have given you some ideas of where you might be able to enhance your home by adding in a little Craftsman character.
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