Craftsman Bungalow House Plans – Usually Include a Wide Front Porch!

We know them as craftsman bungalows, California, Chicago, or Michigan bungalows, Arts and Crafts bungalows, or just plain bungalows. But what differentiates a bungalow from a Craftsmans home? About 1911, the Craftsman Bungalow Co, Inc in Seattle, Washington, along with Gustav Stickley, published a book of house plans called “Craftsman Bungalows” whose floor plans were based on the Art and Crafts movement of the time. The American Arts and Crafts Movement, an American architectural, design, and decorative arts style, was popular from the late 19th century through the early part of the 20th century. It remained strong until the 1930s. Craftsman homes features included:

Low-pitched roof lines, gabled or hipped roof
Deeply overhanging eaves,
Exposed rafters or decorative brackets under eaves
Front porch beneath extension of main roof
Tapered, square columns supporting roof
4-over-1 or 6-over-1 double-hung windows
Frank Lloyd Wright design motifs
Hand-crafted stone or woodwork
Mixed materials throughout structure
A huge front porch equipped with thick, square pedestal-like tapered
columns supporting the roof of the porch

While some purists insist that only homes built using these Stickley plans can truly be called “Craftsman,” many homes were designed in a style similar to Stickley’s, hence the bungalow. Bungalows originated in India and were normally small one-story homes with wide verandas (or porches). They were later used for homes for British officials of the British Raj, and whose design was later brought to the U.S. where they initially gained high status. In the later part of 19th century they were used as large cottages. A bungalow today is usually a detached residential home which is either single story, or has a second story built into a sloping roof. Here are main characteristics:

It usually has dormer windows if it has one and a half stories
House are rather small, however, you may find larger examples that were built in earlier years.
Low-pitched roofs with very deep porches
Heavy stone porch column supports that taper as they ascend
Wide projecting eaves and exposed eave brackets.
Exterior materials include natural siding, brick, and/or stucco.
Street-facing gables with composition or shingled roofs
Dark wood paneling
A large fireplace
An arched opening that separated the living room and dining room
Built-in cabinetry in the dining room and kitchen

As you can see Craftsman homes and bungalows share very similar, if not all, of the same characteristics. No matter how you refer to them, bungalows are one of our favorite home designs. We love the wide expansive porches that make them look cozy and comfortable.Bungalows were simple and inexpensive to build. Prior to World War I, a bungalow cost under $900. After the war, prices rose to approximately $3,500. Because of their affordability the middle class were able to more rapidly move from apartments to homes in greater numbers. Bungalow designs were spread by the practice of building from mail-order plans available from illustrated catalogs, sometimes with alterations based on local practice or conditions.Bungalows are found in older neighborhoods in many American cities. Many cities created what are called “Bungalow Belts” of the homes built in the 1920s because they clustered around streetcar lines. Today, you will find neighborhoods of bungalows in almost any city. Bungalows are prized possessions because of their unique and simple designs, built-ins, and their wonderful porches, bungalows are a favorite of many.

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