artSparx.com - Queen Anne Style. Interior design knowledge for the creative lifestyle.

Clad in clapboards and patterned shingles and dressed to the nines with wraparound porches, stained-glass windows, gingerbread trim, and turrets, the romantic Queen Anne house is the last word in over-the- top American picturesqueness. Originally developed by the English architect Richard Norman Shaw, the Queen Anne style was popularized in the US by a new abundance of factory-made architectural elements, a tendency toward excess during the “Gilded Age,” and the proliferation of home pattern books promoting the style.

A subset of Victorian design, Queen Anne style shaped a wide swath of American domestic architecture: from modest workingman’s cottages to the imposing piles found in old industrial cities like Buffalo and Pittsburgh; from the exuberance of San Francisco’s “painted ladies” to the the elegant restraint of Brooklyn brownstones. Although some Queen Anne's have classical detail like dentils and ionic columns, their facades are asymmetrical, a departure from earlier neoclassicism. Their cross-gabled or mansard slate roofs are steeply pitched, and there is always at least one porch and often large decorative bay windows, orienting the house strongly toward public space.

Taking a cue from the exterior architecture, Queen Anne interiors often feature crown moldings, plaster cornices, and beveled glass mirrors. Staircases are bordered with turned balusters to match the railings on the porch. In this environment, furnishings must be chosen with care: in keeping with a Queen Anne home’s overall style, romantic eclecticism is the order of the day, but Victorian ornament can quickly descend into excess and clutter. (For this reason, Queen Anne eventually came to be known as “bric-a-brac” style.)

Queen Anne exteriors were sometimes painted in four or five different colors to accent the various trim and textural elements, so it’s fair to use a good deal of strong color inside the home as well. Earthy tones like ochre, red, and deep green can be left to their own devices or accented with gilding and richly patterned wall paper. Textiles are also key, from velvet upholstery to oriental carpets, and bric-a-brac is indeed an element of this style: china figurines, portraits, and miniatures are displayed on walls, occasional tables, and the ubiquitous carved mantelpieces. Of course, Victorian antiques can work beautifully in a Queen Anne, but as they tend to be heavy and dark it is wise to use them in moderation. While an entire parlor set in plushly upholstered wine-red velvet may be a bit too Gone With the Wind, one Victorian settee will look dynamite when paired with some simpler pieces against a richly colored and detailed backdrop.


Item CP604


Queen Anne Style architectural details and ornamentation!

Ceiling medallions, cornices and moldings. Authentic Period and Historic Home architectural ornamentation. All crafted in genuine plaster. For commercial and residential environments.

more ornamental plaster medallions.


Blending Traditional and Contemporary Design
Antique glaze paint finish

Stucco Veneziano - Venetian Plaster!

Inspired by the ornate plaster-work of Renaissance Italy, decorative plaster has a millennial history, with origins dating back to the Rome of the Caesars and in the art of Ancient Greece.

It was Andrea Palladio, a famous Italian architect, who in the XVI century re-discovered it through his studies and re-proposed it in the splendid Venetian villas that are still to this day the distinguishing mark of his career. Stucco Veneziano is an aesthetic solution that step by step, conquered Venice and Lombardy, then Italy, and finally entire Europe in the XVII century. Today, venetian plaster Stucco Veneziano restores the splendor of a classic and prestigious finish.

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Antiquing Video Tutorial

Turn ordinary objects into heirlooms! Creating the 'Classic Antique' glaze finish for objects, furniture, walls and more. This detailed step-by-step tutorial shows how to mix the right colors to create the perfect antiquing solution for any object, furniture, picture frame and more.


Elements of Queen Anne Style

Rustic earth tones

Vibrant, colorful patterns underlie this design style.

Feature tutorial.

The Parchment colorwash. Creating the impression of aged walls, the Parchment finish evokes a feeling of history and old world charm. The color density varies over the finished surface and creates appearances of lightly mottled parchment. A soft and airy finish, the Parchment glaze is an ideal way to create mood and character in any room. I’ve found it to be an ideal solution for finishing irregular or textured wall surfaces.

parchment color wash paint finish

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Walls:

Wood paneling, stained or painted, up to dado height; crown and baseboard molding; chair rails. Plain plaster walls with molding will also do. Wall colors are generally pale: cream, dusky rose, sage or pea green, powder blue, gray-beige. Florals are fine, particularly Chinese motifs like peonies and chrysanthemums. In grander houses, antiqued wall finishes, gold, and murals can be used.

neoclassical style

Windows:

Dramatic draperies: swag, rope tassels, fringe, backed with sheers, wood blinds or shades.

Floors:

Wood floors covered with oriental rugs are best. Plush carpet, perhaps floral, is fine also. In grand houses, marble floors were used.


Lighting:

Chandeliers in brass or crystal; Chinese motif table lamps. Wall sconces in silver or brass.

Accessories:

Chinese porcelain, lacquer ware, silver tea services, linens, carved picture frames. Small sculptures, busts. Fans, bronze, snuff bottles.


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