Imagine the most Rockwell-style home. Close your eyes. There is a large, wide porch with either a rocking chair or a swing. It has a lush green lawn and an inviting feeling. This house will feel like home no matter where it is. This is a country-style home: A cozy piece of Americana that is timeless and in high demand.
What is a Country-Style House, and How Does it Work?
Country-style homes refer to a wide variety of home designs. They draw inspiration from the traditional barn, farmhouse, and cabin designs that reflect their rural roots. These homes are built with natural materials, especially wood, and have a large porch that gives them a cozy, nostalgic feeling.
What makes a house country-style?
Country-style houses typically have one to two stories in height and are well-designed. These houses have pitched roofs with overhanging, fabled eaves and often windowed dormers. This adds extra space to the space that was originally an attic.
Country-style homes have at least one porch as an indoor or outdoor living space. This creates a seamless transition from home to nature. You can cover the porches with stoops or wraparounds. They may also run the full width of your house. They can be covered or open and may have some type of seating, such as a swing or rocking chair, visible from the front.
A country-style house will feature large, open spaces that encourage socialization. This makes them great for families or those who love entertaining. This style houses a large country kitchen that is equally suited for entertaining as well as socializing. These kitchens are usually located around a large central island with plenty of cabinets and space for cooking, and an eat-in dining area.
Although country-style is not a specific category, many houses fall under this category.
- Wooden siding
- Exteriors that are well-designed
- One to two stories
- Wraparound or front porch
- Gabled roof
- Symmetrical, double-hung windows
- Shuttered decorative windows
- Wood details
- Flexible floor plans
History of country-style homes
Early American homesteaders built the first country-style homes. They used whatever materials were available locally and were suitable for their local climate and geography. This is why you will find different styles and construction methods depending on where you live. New England’s harsh winters had an impact on the steeply pitched roofs of saltbox homes. Short, compact homes were built on the heartland’s windy plains. While sprawling, low-profile ranch-style houses were built in hot deserts in the Southwest.
Country-style homes were designed to be functional first and foremost. The houses were built to be functional for the homesteaders of the past. Farmworkers could use large porches to wash their dirty clothes before going inside. The porches provided protection from the elements. Homesteaders could leave their windows open to cool the air during hot rainy days and could also sit on the shaded porch to watch the farm from the shade.
Side and rear porches opened directly to a kitchen or wash area. This made it easy to bring in food from the farm without leaving behind dirt and other debris.