Craftsman homes were first built in the U.S. during the latter part of the 19th century, following the British Arts and Crafts movement which saw a departure from Victorian architecture toward clean, livable design. Seattle is home to hundreds of these Craftsman Bungalow homes, many built during the early part of the 20th century following the 1909 Alaska Yukon Pacific Exposition. The Expo brought with it streetcars, and as a result Seattle’s first downtown commuters traveled from suburbs with ease. These were working class families, who built their own homes using purchased “do-it-yourself” kits from major retailers or via detailed construction plans found in magazines and catalogs. The Craftsman was heavily advertised in the Seattle area, and people were drawn to the opportunity to own a home with close access to urban life, a rare opportunity to residents in Eastern cities at the time.
Here are a few distinctive features that help to identify these gems of Seattle history.
heavy wood millwork
low pitched, front or side gabled roofs
dormer windows and multiple roof planes
exposed rafters and beams
wood or stone siding
generous full or partial width porches
tapered porch columns with low pedestals made of stone, brick, wood, or stucco
stone exterior chimneys
open floor plan
natural materials: wood, brick, glass, stone, tile
exposed rafters, joists, beams
built in woodwork
wide door and window casing