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Victorian Stick Architecture

Victorian stick architectureStick styled home designs are another variation of Victorian architecture. A forerunner to Shingle architecture, it was in fashion during the late 1800’s in particular from around the 1860’s – 1890’s. The style is primarily identified by the “stick-work” or false half timber that mimics the Medieval English Tudor Revival buildings. However, in contrast to the stick house plans, most Tudor Revival houses were sided with stucco, stone, or brick. On the other hand, stick style houses are almost always made with wood.

During the days of its popularity, many pattern books were published that showed examples of stick construction but relatively few were built. Victorian stick architecture style was a transitional style that followed Gothic Revival architecture and preceded Queen Anne architecture which was a more widespread and popular style. San Francisco has a large concentration of townhouses in the stick house plans style and in the northeastern states there are surviving examples of gabled stick Victorian houses.

Identifying features of stick Victorian house plans includes wooden wall siding (either shingles or horizontal siding) broken up by uniformed patterns of wood (stick-work) in horizontal, vertical, and/ or diagonal boards raised from the surface of the wall. Roofs are steeply pitch gables (except in townhouse versions where the roof is flat) with cross gables present. The gables are decorated with trusses at the apex, brackets support overhanging eaves with exposed rafter tails, and the porches usually have diagonal support or curve braces. Some examples even show the addition of a tower either square or rectangular in shape. It is rare that you will find all the these features in one example of stick Victorian house plans.