Sunday, March 23, 2008

Normandy Style

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House Beautiful, April 2008. Interior design by Suzanne Kasler. Photography by Frances Janisch.

In this month's issue of House Beautiful, the cover story features a beautiful home (pictured above) described as French Normandy style. Unfortunately, there are no pictures of the exterior of the house. However, the description piqued my interest, so I decided to do some research into what an American Normandy style home would look like.

About.com shows this home as representative of French Normandy architecture. Half-timbering (also seen in Tudor architecture) and stonework is seen on this home, as is the small tower with a cone shaped roof.

Here is a definition of French Normandy architectural style, from Realtor.org:
"In Normandy and the Loire Valley of France, farm silos were often attached to the main living quarters instead of a separate barn. After World War I, Americans romanticized the traditional French farmhouse, creating a charming style known as French Normandy. Sided with stone, stucco, or brick, these homes may suggest the Tudor style with decorative half timbering (vertical, horizontal, and diagonal strips of wood set in masonry). The French Normandy style is distinguished by a round stone tower topped by a cone-shaped roof. The tower is usually placed near the center, serving as the entrance to the home. French Normandy and French Provincial details are often combined to create a style simply called French Country or French Rural. "

Four authentic homes that are in the Normandy region of France. From Michele_mcl's flickr. Notice the round stone tower in the first and second pictures, and the decorative half timbering in the third picture. The house in the last picture has a grander style.

This is a Normandy style home designed by Pak Heydt & Associates, an architectural firm based in Atlanta. This home was inspired by 18th century French Norman farmhouses, with some of the English influences seen in Normandy because of its proximity to England. This home has gray stone walls and a steep slate roof, and to the right is the round stone tower (to look like the farm silo) capped with a conical roof.

The Southern Accents 2003 Showhouse in Dallas had a home that was described as 'Normandy Style'. This house is definitely inspired more by the chateaus of France than the more rustic farmhouses. It is hard to see in this picture, but the facade of the houses was built with light colored stone. The chalky French blue of the shutters and trim is characteristic of Normandy, according to the builder.

Two modern Normandy style homes, in Dallas. Architecture by Richard Drummond Davis.

There is a school in Atlanta whose design is based on Normandy style, as seen in the stone tower, stonework on the building, and the dormers.

I would love to see the exterior of the Atlanta home featured in House Beautiful. I suspect it is a recently built house that I drive by at least three times a week, and next time I drive by I will check to see how it measures up to the French Normandy research that I have done for this post!

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  1. Great post! My favorites are (of course) the ones from France! I 'm going to go on that Flckr site. Is it wonderful? And this weird, but those ones from Dallas - I thought - that looks like Dallas before I even read the caption! Maybe I knew that in my unconciousness? Great research, great post! Why, it's good enough for the Washington Post I do declare!

  2. Greetings from Oslo, Norway:-) Love your site and beautiful pictures. I'll be visiting your site often:-)

  3. I've always liked this style!

    Great photos!


  4. I love the images of the 2 authentic styles - the vantage point with the flowers is completely inviting.

  5. Hello everyone- thanks for the comments! I have not done an architectural post in a while, and I learned a lot while researching this one.

  6. Oh. My. Goodness. This is an amazing, amazing post! I love your architectural posts (I'm still in love with the Georgian one you did awhile back). Total love!!!

  7. Everything is inspiring. I like your style.


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