Colonial style house plans cover a broad spectrum of architectural movements and geographic locations, but generally show influences from the simple structures built along the East Coast during the Colonial, Revolutionary, and Early Republic eras in American history. Of course, like many of today’s other popular home styles, fidelity to any one architectural movement isn’t the point. Rather, these designs evoke simplicity and tradition while still incorporating must-haves of today’s homes (like garages and big kitchen).
You’ll find a wide range of styles within this collection, from simple saltbox designs (look for the asymmetrical sloping roof) and Cape Cod homes to larger Georgian home plans. Adam-Federal style house plans (a later development) feature low-pitched roofs and more decorative detail. Dutch Colonial house plans are easy to spot by their gambrel roof (with two different slopes, shallow and then steep – when you think of a classic barn shape, you probably picture a gambrel roof).
While many Colonial homes feature two stories (especially farmhouses), you’ll also find many one story designs and even those with one-and-a-half stories, traditional to Cape Cod designs. Dormers frequently are added to the exteriors and bring light into the second floor.
Exterior materials vary on Colonial style house designs, from brick (common in the Mid-Atlantic states) to siding and occasionally stone or stucco. Symmetry is an important hallmark of many Colonial designs, with windows often aligned on top of each other and elegant entryways in the middle. Shutters frequently appear on these designs – for the most realistic look, choose ones that are properly scaled to the windows. Palladian windows add elegance and bring in plenty of light. You’ll also find porches on many of today’s Colonial styles to add a bit of country flair and a comfortable place to relax outside.
While Colonial plans traditionally presented a central hall with rooms branching off in a formal arrangement, today’s preference for open-concept layouts means that the floor plans are quite different. Most families don’t have need for a parlor or even a formal living room any more. Instead, the majority of designs from recent years devote square footage to the great room and kitchen, because that’s where we spend a lot of time and entertain in a casual way.
Colonial style homes work well in traditional neighborhoods, especially on the East Coast. Find your Colonial house plan today and bring timeless beauty to your area.
Related categories include: Cape Cod House Plans and New England House Plans.