Craftsman-Style Homes have defining characteristics and they are easy to spot if you know what to look for. Craftsman homes trace their origins back to the British Arts and Crafts movement of the early 20th century and feature comfortable, affordable designs that are easy for architects to replicate. In addition, the craftsman-style home is one of the most popular residential designs, featured throughout the United States in a variety of formats and styles, including the California bungalow.

Defining Characteristics of The Craftsman-Style House

 Defining Characteristics

If you’re interested in building a new custom home using this classic design style, you’ll want to speak with local architecture and design firms, who can connect you with the professionals necessary for starting your project.   

History of the Craftsman-Style House

The craftsman house features simplistic, reasonably priced building materials and design, making the home relatively easy to assemble. The style first reached significant popularity in the United States by introducing mass-produced housing during the later periods of the industrial revolution. A substantial portion of the craftsman houses in use today were built between 1900 and 1940. The style created a handful of more specialized design styles, including prairie homes and mission-style houses. With the introduction of craftsman-style residential design, attractive homes were more affordable than ever. 

Defining Characteristics of Craftsman Homes

All craftsman-style houses feature a family and budget-friendly design and arrangement, with quality building materials that make maintenance easy. The defining characteristics of this style can be broad and a few designs and aesthetic tenets apply to every home. For instance, here are a few of the most common exterior and interior elements for this form of residential architecture.

Modest Size and Budget

The large-scale construction of craftsman-style homes required that both the budget and the size of the home were affordable for the average American family. Early craftsman homes had only a single story, though one and a half or two-story structures are now more common. With custom craftsman homes, there’s plenty of room for going beyond the modest size and scale of these traditional builds to make a home that looks and feels luxurious. 

Low-Pitched Roofs

Craftsman homes have a practical, low-pitched roof that adds elegant yet straightforward horizontal lines to the front and sides of the home’s exterior. The eaves of the house are wider, overhanging beyond the edge of the structure. The gabled roof features natural colors for shingles and trim. Chimneys are standard for single-story craftsman homes, while dormer levels and windows are popular for multi-level residences. 

Comfortable Front Porch

The roofing structure allows for a covered roof around the front door. Rafters and supporting beams style is yet simple and visible from the home’s exterior. Brick and concrete are the most popular building materials for this space, though the supporting columns are more often than not made of wood. Just as with the roofing, the front of the house usually uses a natural, calming palette, with colors such as brown, grey, white, and light blue. 

Multi-Pane Windows

Simple, multi-pane windows are a staple of craftsman design and bring pleasant, calming design to both the interior and exterior of the home. Natural light is essential for most of the home’s interior, allowing the space to feel airy and comfortable at any time of the day. Window bays, first popularized in Victorian architecture, are also fairly effective in adding more luxury appeal. Planters and garden beds beneath the windows are common and offer more natural aesthetic appeal. 

Traditional Interior Design

The traditional interior design prioritizes the comfort of the homeowner, featuring a broad range of ornate detailing, patterns, and textures throughout the space. Darker colors are significantly more prevalent in traditional interiors in comparison with their contemporary counterparts. Craftsman homes make integrating traditional interior design easy. Wood panels and finishes blend with the home’s exterior, extending the natural design appeals and colors of the architecture itself. 

The traditional interior design establishes a space that’s warm and inviting, for both the homeowner and their guests. Everything from the furnishings to the wall art looks and feels familiar and home-like. Traditional interiors don’t hail from a single time period, which means they are significantly easier to build than more modernized arrangements. For homeowners seeking a mix of the contemporary and classic for their craftsman home interiors. Transitional interior design is a popular choice for blending all manner of elements and styles. 

Open Floor Plans

They designed the traditional floor plan of the artisan home with the American family in mind. In keeping with this design philosophy, they unite most rooms with open architecture. Wood beams and trimmed archways connect spaces, but not in a manner that closes off the rooms from one another. With a connected kitchen, dining room, and living room, there’s plenty of space for a family to connect. Craftsman-style houses are a fashionable choice for any new custom home. But their primary benefit is their ability to match the homeowner’s lifestyle. 

Types of Craftsman-Style Houses

There are a handful of popular spinoff designs that originate from craftsman-style houses. Foremost is the bungalow home, which you’ll find everywhere across the country. Foursquare-style houses are also an offshoot of the craftsman house, as our mission and prairie homes. Each home style features a unique mixture of exterior and interior building materials but holds to the basic tenets of craftsman-style homes. 

Connecting With a Residential Architect

If you’re interested in building a custom home for your family, you might plan with craftsman architecture and design. To get started with this product speak with the design professionals at a residential architecture firm, besides an interior design company. Even if you aren’t interested in building your own home, you’ll find plenty of pleasant craftsman homes in almost every neighborhood in America.


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About the Author: McKenna Tucker