Monday, January 16, 2017

Antebellum home video tours

Antebellum architecture (meaning "prewar", from the Latin ante, "before", and bellum, "war") is the neoclassical architectural style characteristic of the 19th-century Southern United States, especially the Deep South, from after the birth of the United States with the American Revolution, to the start of the American Civil War.[1] Antebellum architecture is especially characterized by GeorgianNeo-classical, and Greek Revival style plantation homes and mansions. -- Wikipedia

My love of antebellum homes has nothing to do with the Civil War. There are equally stunning Georgian, Federal, Neo-classical and Greek homes that are located in the northern part of the USA as well, with plenty more that have been built since the Civil War. My travels to "study" and/or visit some of these homes have been centered in Texas, Louisiana, Tennessee, Kentucky, South Carolina, Georgia and Mississippi because those are areas where my husband and I enjoy traveling.

I love studying details such as fireplace mantel styles, cabinet door trim, flooring, molding around doors, transoms, light fixtures, even down to the locks on both the interior and exterior doors. Each seemingly insignificant design element contributes to the total design.

In order to create a historic replica, the homeowner must find pieces that would look "at home" in a historic house. A great place to start the search is Van Dykes Restorers. Their catalogs and website is packed with authentic items for old houses, but can be used in new builds as well.

Since every detail counts, we searched until we found elements that would have been at home in a 100 or 200 year old home.

Sconce made in America by Framburg

One of a matching pair of chandeliers
in the foyer - made in America
by Framburg

Baldwin mortise lockset

Doorbell push button

 Our designer taught us not to put anything in our house that we didn't love. I broke that rule with a few pieces of hardware, but I'll "survive."  Don't worry about the "name" that a manufacturer has placed on an item.

One of our ceiling fans has Tuscan in it's name. I can visualize it in a Tuscan home, but in our historic southern style home the fan looks like it's something that came out of an old house. The globes on the double lights looked to be tea-dyed or aged from years of use. Thinking creatively is essential.

Watching videos of homes I've never visited is also a great resource. Not only does it give an over-all sense of various design styles, the tours also can provide an education in choosing design elements. Sometimes a video deserves to be watched multiple times to understand how the details were pulled together to create the overall design.

A Louisiana drive along the river 

A home video tour of Nottoway Plantation home (Louisiana) - limited ability to see the entire rooms, but lots of interesting information from the docent and several ideas. Worth watching

The abandoned Selma Plantation home in Virginia. Wonderful shots of original trim on the interior and exterior of this house. The home is being restored at this time.

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