American Stone Cottages...
The French (& English) Connection!

The stone cottages featured here show the profound influence European architecture -- particularly French and British -- has had on cottage design in America.   Though generally not precise copies, "Americanized" versions are, nevertheless, characteristically picturesque and charming in their own right!

stone cottages


The French Provincial cottage pictured below,  left,  features  a  steeply pitched hip roof -- typical of the style -- that is covered with slate stone tiles.    Square in shape and symmetrically balanced, arch topped windows flank an arched entry door . . . . . characteristics or features that are also quite  common  with  this style in America, giving it a rather formal appear-

Conversely,  the English cottage style has an irregular, asymmetrical shape that gives it a much more casual and informal appearance. Gable roofs and "squared off" window tops are other common features.    The charming En-
glish stone cottage pictured below, right, is located in Chadds Ford,  Penn-
sylvania, USA.  Unlike most "Americanized" versions, this particular example is so authentic it appears to have been plucked from the English Cotswolds and transported across the pond to the United States!

stone cottages
stone cottages

The "cottage craze" began in America shortly after World War I  and  con-
tinued throughout the 1920s and 1930s.  American soldiers returning from Europe at the end of the war were enamored with the French -- and  par-
ticularly English  --  cottages they had seen while traveling abroad.   The ideas and images captured in their minds were subsequently conveyed to American architects, designers and builders,  who then interpreted and in-
corporated them in their new home designs.

Entire subdivisions of European, or more precisely, English-inspired cottage designs,  such  as  the example pictured below, soon dotted the American landscape from coast to coast.    For a variety of reasons -- not the least
of  which  was  affordability  --  stucco  and  false half-timbering were fre-
quently substituted for stone on the exterior.

stone cottages

However,  affordability  was  not always the primary reason for substituting materials.  Given Britain's lengthy history, architectural styles changed over the centuries . . . and then were subsequently revived. For example, Tudor Revival architecture -- both in England and America -- frequently employed a variety of materials, including stone, brick, stucco and half-timbering.

The 1920s Tudor Revival cottage pictured below is located in  Indianapolis, Indiana, USA.  It features a picturesque combination of stone and brick on its exterior.

stone cottages

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Geographic location also played a significant role in the architectural design and building materials used in construction.   For example, an abundance of stone  in  England's  hilly Cotswold region made it the number one choice of cottage builders and dwellers for centuries.   The Cotswold-inspired design that follows is located in Mankato, Minnesota, USA.

stone cottages

The  beautiful English-inspired stone cottage style home pictured below is of relatively recent origin.  Located near Atlanta, Georgia, USA, landscape architect Richard Anderson further enhanced the look and feel with a cot-
tage garden that includes a profusion  of  climbing  roses  clinging  to  the stone facade and cascading over the covered entry way.

stone cottages

See More English Cottages!

The masterpiece of 1920s or '30s period  architecture  that  follows  is  lo-
cated on Lake Michigan in Winnetka, Illinois, an affluent  suburb  north  of Chicago. More manor house than cottage, due to its size, it, nevertheless, employs a considerable variety of cottage style detailing to feature it here. Having seen this home, myself, several years ago, it is every bit as impres-
sive as it appears in the photo below!

At  the  end of World War I, Americans romanticized the traditional French farmhouse and created a style known as French Normandy.      Clad   with stone, stucco or brick  --  alone or in combination  --  these cottage style homes  often  resemble,  in  part,  the  English Tudor style with decorative half-timbering.     As shown in this example,  the French Normandy style is frequently distinguished by a round stone tower with a conical roof.    Also note the "sag" or "crook" in the slate stone roof  --  a  construction  detail often employed in American cottage style homes to help give them an age-
old appearance.

stone cottages

American boathouses of the 1920s and '30s were also heavily influenced by European cottage style architecture.   The picturesque design that follows features a romantic stone tower capped with  little  dormers  on  its  cone-
shaped roof.

stone cottages

See More Picturesque Boathouses!

The unusual bungalow style stone cottage pictured below was clearly in-
fluenced by English cottage design.     Located in the Hyde Park area of Cincinnati,  Ohio,  USA,  it features half-timbering above the upper story windows and a distinctive  wood  shingle  roof  designed  to  emulate  a thatched roof.

stone cottages

stone cottages

And  finally,   the  remaining  stone cottages featured here also appear
to have come from the British Isles. Located in Carmel-by-the-Sea, Cal-
ifornia  --  a  haven  for  Storybook
 cottages  --  they appear to
be quite authentic in design.    The example pictured at right includes a thatch  roof and an English cottage garden.

The stone cottage pictured below, right, is known as "Tor House" and was begun in 1918 by poet Robinson Jeffers. In 1920, he began work on "Hawk Tower" (below left), a romantic pile reminiscent of ancient Irish stone tow-
ers. Both Tor House and Hawk Tower are open to the public today.

stone cottages

See More Storybook Cottages in Carmel-by-the-Sea!


THE STONE COTTAGE...From the Scottish
Highlands to the Hills of Tuscany!

stone cottages

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stone cottages

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stone cottages

...Downright Irresistible!

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..."StoryStone" Style!

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