THE MOST POPULAR HOME STYLES IN FAIRFIELD COUNTY, CT
Fairfield County, CT, like most housing markets, tends to favor a particular style of home. This is an area of luxury home where many of the properties are built using traditional architectural styles. Although homes here share similar design details and materials, most are custom built. As a result, we have a wide variety of takes on certain residential architecture. The following styles are some of the more popular in Greenwich, Westport, Darien, New Canaan, and Fairfield, among other area towns.
The Georgian style of architecture was most popular in the colonies between 1700-1830, only to be ushered out as the United States began to establish itself as a nation, and a new style emerged: the American Federal style. Georgian-style architecture can be attributed to the work of English architect Sir Christopher Wren.
Although many of the original homes built using this architectural style were demolished over time, there are still some examples in coastal towns in Maryland and Virginia. Although it’s much harder to find original examples of Georgian-style architecture in Connecticut and New York, towns like Greenwich and Westport are dotted with several examples of modern takes on this historic style.
Dominant features of the Georgian style include symmetrical design and placement of windows, eves, doors, and the layout of interior spaces. In northern states like Connecticut, the siding was often wood clapboard or shingles. The dominant siding style down south was brick. Ornate corner quoins were another distinct feature. These were typically made of solid stone blocks.
The Federal style was most prominent between the years of 1780-1840. It was known as a refinement of the Georgina style. The change occurred as America began to take root. The main differences between Federal and Georgian can be found in the exterior. Federal-style homes have more subtle details, such as thinner or non-existent quoins. Geometrical elements, on the other hand, were added. For example, rounded entryways and more elaborately curved rooms were more of the norm.
The popularity of shingle-style home design started as early as 1880 and ran through 1900. This is a significant departure from the more classic, boxy, European-inspired residential architecture of the time. The shingle style was unique to American design.
Several features stand out when compared to European inspired design. Shingle-style homes feature several balconies, porches, and large windows. They also feature towers and roof forms with high pitch. The shingle style shares some characteristics with Victorian-era homes; however, the big difference is the lack of ornate detail that is found on Victorian models.
The technical definition of contemporary is that the design is being created in the now, at the present time, with current influences. This style of home design came out of the modern boom that began in the early 20th century. The major defining characteristics of contemporary design are straight lines and minimal use of ornate features. The idea is that straight lines and clean spaces provide unobstructed living space with flow. Contemporary design also puts a high emphasis on nature. Large windows let in natural light and provide less visual obstruction to nature. Natural materials such as wood and stone are also used in abundance.
The majority of homes in Fairfield County are built in classical architectural styles, such as Federal and Georgian. There are some really fine examples of contemporary architecture dotting the landscape, however. And, of course, we can find examples of many other architectural styles in the area as well.