Form & Function Of Architectural Features: The Artistry Of Vintage Door Knobs

Details Of Past Elegance:  The Vintage Door Knob
Details Of Past Elegance: The Vintage Door Knob

An element of form and function. The artistry of the vintage doorknob. Forms of art. Artistic forms of grandeur from a time period in which details mattered, elegance was revered and craftsmanship ruled. The individual beauty of the vintage door knob is striking and stunning. Representations of a time gone by yet reminders of the beauty that society once required within the realm of the structures that surrounded…

Lavished Design:  The Architectural Door Knob
Lavished Design: The Architectural Door Knob

History holds that although door handles appeared during Egyptian times, until the Middle Ages the basic form of doorways were created with textiles and furs. After the late 1500’s architecture offered separate rooms in which the addition of a door featuring leather or hand forged latches evolved. Interesting. In America, in the mid-ninetenth century (from 1830 to 1873), the production and manufacture of door knobs would evolve further into an enduring architectural element of form and function. Initially, plain wooden knobs were the first simple forms of door knobs of Colonial times followed by pressed glass and cut glass door knobs (popular from 1826-1850). Of note, prior to 1876 ceramic and porcelain knobs were imported from France and England. Of course, a nod to the beautiful swirls that knobs of Rosewood held. Striking appeal, indeed. Around 1846 the formation of cast metal knobs arrived to embellish structures. Made of iron or steel, these forms of function were covered either entirely or coated with a veneer of bronze or brass. But oh, the stylized decoration of these knobs of purpose that would thrive! It is said that after the Centennial Exposition of 1876 (the first official World’s Fair in the United State), the world of decorative door hardware was launched nationwide. Yes, the embellishments of lavish detail that beckoned the desire of the Victorian Era would prevail…

Centennial Exhibition 1876/United States
Centennial Exhibition 1876/United States

In the late 1800’s these composite metal knobs formed with a compression casting method offered the ability to design and provide ornamentation of the hardware. Of historical interest, during World War II, brass door knobs were removed and melted down for the war effort. Imagine! Alas, those that remain offer a rare desirability by those that covet and appreciate them. A link and emblem to the decorative arts of the past that is no longer abundant but rare architectural “jewels” of the past. Yet it is the cast bronze and brass door knobs with ornamental patterns that the Victorians graced their residences and structures that continue to amaze and delight me. Of course, I hold an appreciation of all of the beautiful forms of materials & construction of these architectural features. And of the knobs of form and function? Whether spherical or ball-shaped or the ease of an egg-shape design or the knobs fashioned like a drum, the designs have certainly changed throughout the decades that would follow. Coordinating with the eras they would be fixed within. Fixed to surface mounted locks or doors for entry, the door knob would continue to experience a renaissance resembling the prevailing styles of the eras. Of course, a nod to the decorative door handle plates that would surround the knobs (Escutcheons) which were often rectangular and were also embellished with decorative designs, such as floral patterns or geometric shapes. Beauty of form and function and visual interest in design, indeed. Shape and surface appeal. Craftsmanship and intricate design paired in the creation of art.

The function and form of vintage door knobs deserve our attention and appreciation, for certain. An object of history. As elements of the past, a mere appreciation of the art form that they represent…

Architectural Salvage:  The Enduring Appeal Of The Vintage Door Knob
Architectural Salvage: The Enduring Appeal Of The Vintage Door Knob
Aesthetics Of Form & Function:  The Architectural Door Knob
Aesthetics Of Form & Function: The Architectural Door Knob
Elements Of Distinction:  The Vintage Door Knob
Elements Of Distinction: The Vintage Door Knob
Architectural Delights:  The Elegance Of The Vintage Door Knob
Architectural Delights: The Elegance Of The Vintage Door Knob
Unique Beauty Of Surface Appeal:  Vintage Door Knobs
Unique Beauty Of Surface Appeal: Vintage Door Knobs
Brass Appeal:  Vintage Door Knobs Of Architectural Delight
Brass Appeal: Vintage Door Knobs Of Architectural Delight
Details Of Elegance: The Vintage Door Knob
Details Of Elegance: The Vintage Door Knob
Vintage Elegance Of Artistic Form & Function:  Door Knobs
Vintage Elegance Of Artistic Form & Function: Door Knobs
Designed Artistry Of Vintage Form:  Door Knobs
Designed Artistry Of Vintage Form: Door Knobs
Basics Of Form:  Appreciation Of The Door Knob
Basics Of Form: Appreciation Of The Door Knob
Form & Function:   The Vintage Door Knob
Form & Function: The Vintage Door Knob
Painted Appeal & The Vintage Door Knob
Painted Appeal & The Vintage Door Knob
White Porcelain Delights:  The Vintage Door Knob
White Porcelain Delights: The Vintage Door Knob
Vintage Glass Door Knobs Of Starburst Appeal
Vintage Glass Door Knobs Of Starburst Appeal
Pressed Molten Glass Of Clear Delight: The Vintage Door Knob
Pressed Molten Glass Of Clear Delight: The Vintage Door Knob
Clear Elegance:  The Glass Vintage Door Knob
Clear Elegance: The Glass Vintage Door Knob
Multifaceted Style In Clear Glass:  The Vintage Door Knob
Multifaceted Style In Clear Glass: The Vintage Door Knob
Rounded Delights:  The Vintage Door Knob
Rounded Delights: The Vintage Door Knob

Although the materials, form and designs vary, consider with appreciation the beauty and design of the vintage door knobs and the historical connection to the past they offer. For me? What is it about the knobs of yesteryear that beckon? Like “jewels” on doors, to stumble across one is exhilarating to me and certain to be captured by whatever means of photography that is on me at that moment. Alas, the camera phone. Included within these compilations are many that I have captured from within the vintage homes of the late 1800’s town of Woodstock, Illinois that I currently reside within, as well as during my travels. Many more await to be captured from behind my lens. Doors that hold an opportunity to find appreciation in the details of life that are before us. A past that carries with it into the present. History and the artistry and elegance of the past that endures to remain as a symbol of bygone eras. Appreciation, always…

Onward,

Kristin


“Find pleasure in the beauty of details”
– Hans Zirngast

PS: There are bound to be more images added to this compilation…for I will never stop capturing the distinctive beauty that surrounds on doorways of the past…

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Forms Of Antiquity: The Architectural “Caryatid” & The Female Form

Ancient Architectural Form & Function:   Caryatids
Ancient Architectural Form & Function: Caryatids

Art and architecture. A Caryatid in architecture is described as “A stone carving of a draped female figure, used as a pillar to support the entablature of a Greek or Greek-style building”. Taking the place of a column or pillar, the Greek term Karyatides is literally said to mean “Maidens of Karyai”, an ancient town of Peloponnese in which a temple was dedicated to a goddess known as Artemis. Mythology paired with architecture, indeed.


“As Karyatis, she rejoiced in the dances of the nut-tree village of Karyai, those Karyatides, who in their ecstatic round-dance carried on their heads baskets of live reeds, as if they were dancing plants”
-Unknown

Caryatids In Ancient Architecture
Caryatids In Ancient Architecture

Since ancient times buildings have been designed with female figures as supporting columns. Sculpture fitted to a structure. Some of the earliest known examples date from around the 6th century BC in Greece at the treasuries of Delphi. The use of these draped female figures used as architectural supports can certainly be traced back to Greek antiquity. Alas, the bulky yet intricately arranged hairstyles served the crucial purpose of providing key structural support to their necks, which would otherwise be the structurally weakest part of the figure. Of note, a Caryatid supporting a basket on her head is called a canephora (“basket-bearer”). Form and function, indeed…

Ancient Form:  The Caryatid Of The  Erechtheion
Ancient Form: The Caryatid Of The Erechtheion

The most iconic and perhaps most-copied Caryatid examples are the carved six figures of the Caryatid Porch of the Erechtheion (409 BC) referred to as ‘The Venerable Temple’ on the Acropolis of Athens, Greece. Of note, the originals have been replaced onsite by replicas, but the original ancient forms of stately pose are on exhibit within the Acropolis Museum with one removed during the early 19th century, residing in England’s British Museum in London. Ancient history preserved. Of additional interest, these six Caryatids are not identical. Rather, although they are the same in build and height and similar in attire and coiffed hair, their faces, stance, the draping of fabric and hair are said to have been carved separately. Interesting. In addition, three of the caryatids stand on their right foot and the other three stand on their left foot. Architectural differences of distinction. Of course, the Romans would copy these Erechtheion caryatids, installing their own copies in the Forum of Augustus and in the Pantheon in Rome, among other great structures. Great architecture will always be revered.

These draped figures of stone, often supporting acanthus baskets, visually hold the weight of architecture above them and enduringly offer a tribute to the female form and the link to the ancient past. Perhaps one can view these figures a symbol of strength and beauty. For certain, the implications of these figures and their representations in ancient times can take on a deeper role. Perhaps the search for meaning of sculpture and architecture as a united force of art can offer many interpretations. These load-bearing forms of the structures are an art form that will endure to inspire. For the purpose of appreciation of the beauty of the architecture and the form itself of these female figures, a mere collection of images, sourced from the world wide web, will hopefully bring further appreciation to the timeless form of architectural beauty….

Architectural Supports Of Ancient Distinction: Caryatids
Architectural Supports Of Ancient Distinction: Caryatids
Draped Figures Of Ancient Appeal:  Caryatid
Draped Figures Of Ancient Appeal: Caryatid
Architectural Form & Function Of The Female Form
Architectural Form & Function Of The Female Form
Caryatids:  Elements Of History & Form
Caryatids: Elements Of History & Form
Form & Function Of Ancient Architectural Beauty:  Caryatids
Form & Function Of Ancient Architectural Beauty: Caryatids
Architectural Supports Of Distinction:  Caryatids
Architectural Supports Of Distinction: Caryatids
Art & Architecture:  Caryatids
Art & Architecture: Caryatids
Caryatids:  The Female Form Of Enduring Appeal
Caryatids: The Female Form Of Enduring Appeal
Architectural Interpretations Of Ancient Form:  Caryatids
Architectural Interpretations Of Ancient Form: Caryatids
Emblems Of Beauty & Strength:  Caryatids In Architecture
Emblems Of Beauty & Strength: Caryatids In Architecture
Caryatids In Architecture:  Form & Function
Caryatids In Architecture: Form & Function
Architectural Delights:  Caryatids Within Architecture
Architectural Delights: Caryatids Within Architecture
Female Form:  Representations Of Caryatids In The Garden
Female Form: Representations Of Caryatids In The Garden
Ancient Forms Enduring In Architectural Appeal:  Caryatids
Ancient Forms Enduring In Architectural Appeal: Caryatids
Caryatids Of Diverse Form & Function
Caryatids Of Diverse Form & Function
Caryatids/Macy's/New York/ 34th Street
Caryatids/Macy’s/New York/ 34th Street

And of the statuesque figures of female form that are found within the interior? Certain resemblances and links to ancient past, for certain. Appreciation of the artistic representation of historic significance, indeed.

In Early Modern times, the practice of integrating caryatids into building facades was revived. The world of Art Deco architecture would certainly embrace the forms of antiquity. Within interiors these forms of sculpture would begin to be included as new features of building structures and within the world of interior decoration. For certain, the beauty of the female figure in architecture holds enduring allure to the world that surrounds which continually changes and evolves. Appreciation…

Female Caryatid Representations: Statues Within The Interior
Female Caryatid Representations: Statues Within The Interior

My appreciation of the beauty of the architectural details of the beautiful form of antiquity is not new. Carved and sculpted details of architectural wonder. Yet of my renewed and focussed appreciation, perhaps the urge to visually share came by way of an unexpected surprise. And it all started with a statue…

Female Form Of Greek Mythology:  Aphrodite
Female Form Of Greek Mythology: Aphrodite

On a whim I stopped into a local antique store when I suddenly spotted her. It was immediate that I was drawn to the ancient emblem of antiquity and classic form. Found amidst other elements of the past, I simply had to acquire. An alabaster figure that now graces my dresser and stands boldly and beautifully among my personal accessories of fashion and fragrances that layer. Perhaps as a reminder of the beauty of the past and an appreciation of the enduring appeal of the figure of the woman

Representation Of Ancient Appeal:  A Caryatid Within My Interior...
Representation Of Ancient Appeal: A Caryatid Within My Interior…

Within the history of fashion and the arts, the iconic architectural sculptures of antiquity have certainly been an inspiration of timeless appeal…

Caryatids & Modern Dance Icon Isadora Duncan (1877-1927)
Caryatids & Modern Dance Icon Isadora Duncan (1877-1927)
Christian Dior Models & Caryatids: Fashion's Form & Function
Christian Dior/1951 Models & Caryatids: Fashion’s Form & Function
Fashionable Representations Of The Caryatid Form
Fashionable Representations Of The Caryatid Form

Consider with appreciation the forms of antiquity that grace the structures that fill our world. Look closer and appreciate the ancient past that carries with it an enduring visual acknowledgement of form and function. Whether carved in the round or in relief or frieze or crowning a pediment with grace, there is beauty to be found within the past world that carries with it into our future an enduring emblem of the past

Onward,

Kristin

“Now here we have another emotional symbol… for almost three thousand years or longer, architects have designed buildings with columns shaped as female figures… After all those centuries it took Rodin to see that this was work too heavy for a girl… Here is this poor little caryatid who has tried — and failed, fallen under the load…. She didn’t give up, Ben; she’s still trying to lift that stone after it has crushed her…”
-Robert Heinlein (1907-1988)”Stranger in a Strange Land”

“…Like a caryatid on vacation. He was supporting nothing but his daydreams”
-Victor Hugo, Les Miserables

Female Forms Of Caryatid Reprentation
Female Forms Of Caryatid Representation

New Orleans, French Quarter: A Visual Paradise Of Architectural Delights

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans. On a recent trip to one of the world’s most fascinating cities my camera beckoned me. “The Big Easy”. Described as a “unique melting pot of culture, food and music”, to experience this city from behind the lens of a camera is exhilarating. An excited frenzy of desire to capture the true essence of New Orleans and the architecture that adorns it. An attempt, for certain. History paired with structures of timeless appeal

New Orleans (La Nouvelle-Orléans) is “a major United States port and the largest city and metropolitan area in the state of Louisiana”. The city of New Orleans is named after the Duke of Orleans, who reigned as Regent for Louis XV from 1715 to 1723. Founded in 1718, New Orleans is also known as “NOLA”. The city was “established by French colonists and strongly influenced by their European culture”. This French colony was ceded to the Spanish Empire in the Treaty of Paris (1763). Perhaps it is no surprise that this great city became known for its distinctive French and Spanish Creole architecture, as well as its “cross-cultural and multilingual heritage”. New Orleans (Nueva Orleans) “remained under Spanish control until 1801, when it reverted briefly to French oversight”. Napoleon sold Louisiana (New France) to the United States in the Louisiana Purchase in 1803. Of interest, nearly all of the surviving 18th-century architecture of the Vieux Carré (French Quarter) is said to date from the Spanish period. New Orleans played a major role during the Antebellum era with evidences of neoclassical architectural style, characteristic of the Southern United States. All of the architecture that is layered within this port city beckoned my lens. Add to this that New Orleans is considered to be the birthplace of Jazz and you have a perfect combination in a city of intrigue, for certain. And oh, the celebrations New Orleans is known for! World famous festivals certainly continue to lure the world to these city streets. Having been to this magical city once before for Mardi Gras, the experiences I encountered on this trip marked a different appeal from behind my lens. Rather than colorful beads dripping from lamp posts and swags of the city’s colors of yellow, green and purple, the architecture and feel of the city stood on its own. Appreciation from behind my lens. Details that excite. Details that beckon.

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

The draw and pull to wander and walk the streets of New Orleans was strong. The French Quarter enticed my lens at each corner and from every angle. The culture of New Orleans permeates throughout the streets. Perhaps beyond the visuals that surround the sound of Creole jazz music, Dixieland, Ragtime, Jazz, Cajun and Zydeco music that drifts from the structures and fills the streets or is offered up by pop-up street performers, provides an emotional connection to the city that offers energy and life. And of the architecture? Creole cottages with high, steep front facing gables with wide front porches or simple stoops, brick chimneys and wooden storm shutters offer distinctive appeal in watercolor hues or bold visions of colorful appeal. Of course, the Creole townhouses that line the streets of the French Quarter offer unique NOLA appeal. These two and three tiered brick buildings present strikingly detailed wrought iron skirted balconies. The hidden walled courtyards from within these structures beckon a closer look when stumbling upon. A mysterious appeal prominent in the Quarter, indeed. Add to the architectural appeal the double shotgun framed row houses that abut to the sidewalk, with painted details that delight, and you will have visually sampled some of the classic local architectural style of the French Quarter. Other significant details that truly represent New Orleans are the gas lights that fill the city streets and grace the structures of history. Of course, a nod to the fleur de lys which has been a symbol of New Orleans since they were emblazoned upon the French explorer flag when Nouvelle Orleans was founded. An enduring emblem of New Orleans, for certain. One cannot help but take note of the decorative oval wrought iron air vents that decorate the lower part of the cottages. Although the structures themselves are not pristine they often offer an element of preserved decay. But beauty remains. And it is enchanting.

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

To set ones eyes upon Jackson Square, in the heart of the French Quarter, brings attention upward in appreciation of the towering Spires of the St. Louis Cathedral. Stunning. History is seeped within New Orleans. An intoxicating city that endures to beckon….

New Orleans/House Appeal 2015

To discover the essence of New Orleans, one may only need to walk the streets of the French Quarter. With eyes wide open. Streets filled with color, life and energy. Surrounded by architectural wonders in a city entrenched in history. The photographs presented are a mere compilation of visual delights and details of this jeweled city that await. Consider with mere appreciation this visual paradise of delights of the City of New Orleans. And of my place from behind the lens? I will never tire of focussing upon its timeless beauty. A visual paradise, indeed…

Onward,

Kristin

My Feet Upon The Streets Of New Orleans...2015
My Feet Upon The Streets Of New Orleans…2015

Architectural Appreciation Of The Southern City Of “Seven Hills”: Richmond, Virginia

Brick, Architecture & Visual Interest:  Richmond, Virginia
Brick, Architecture & Visual Interest: Richmond, Virginia

Richmond. The “City of Seven Hills”. On a recent trip to this southern city located off the James River, my camera lens sought to capture the varied architecture found within the hills of a city entrenched with pre-civil war history. A city that holds Antebellum architecture and varied jewels of history and architectural distinction.

Although this city is not new to me, having resided here for two years in the early 1990’s, the city of Richmond was always one in which I found appreciation. Granted, coming from Long Island, New York to Richmond,Virginia, the Southern charm took me by surprise. Yet looking back, it was a time in which I discovered the nuances that this city on hillsides offered. History and architecture. The architecture layered within this southern city is varied and distinctive. Red bricks, decorative wood and wrought iron facades beckoned my camera lens.

Grand classics that have survived time, from the classic architecture of the pre-Civil War homes on 18th century Church Hill to the structures nestled within the city’s hilly surrounds, these are details that are worthy of focus. And focus I did. Image after image, compiled to relay the diverse architectural appeal of Richmond. Perhaps it can be said that every city across the country and beyond, offers a unique landscape of architecture. For certain, Richmond’s use of red brick and ironwork are iconic to the southern charm of this city. Red bricks or painted bricks paired with carved wooden or stone classical pediments and decorative ironwork facades. Historical character, indeed.

Richmond, the capital of the Commonwealth of Virginia, was founded in 1737 as the central marketplace for inland Virginia. Of interest, Richmond held three historic political conventions during the pre-Revolutionary war years (including Patrick Henry’s iconic speech “Give me liberty or give me death”(1775) at the St. Johns Church (built 1741/notably the only Colonial structure that remains in Richmond). After the Revolutionary War Richmond grew rapidly and in 1782 it was incorporated as a city. As a port city off the James River with major commercial and industrial centers, it is interesting to note that the first American iron and brick supplies were manufactured in Richmond. Who knew? Of course, this “River City”, although it is also known for its tobacco processing (a nod to the historic district of “Tobacco Row”), it is perhaps the remnants of the brick and pre-civil war Antebellum houses with wrought ironwork that offer a vivid reminder of the city’s early history. The picturesque architecture, monuments and mansions throughout the city certainly inspires. A trip down “Monument Avenue” offers a southern history of the “Gilded Age” and luxury that still stands the test of time. Add to that, architecture that reflects Gothic, Greek Revival, Neo-Classical, Italianate and Federal style embellishments that the city’s architecture holds as visual treasures. It is my hope that the images presented provide a broad “snapshot” of the architectural array that represents Richmond’s importance before the Civil War and the iconic structures built in years that followed. Memorable to me over the years is the Main Street Train Station, located in “Shockoe Hill”. Decorated with what is described as “Pompeian” brickwork, terra-cotta and stone, it stands distinctively over the city and the raised highway that has since wrapped itself closely to the clock tower. Modern life paired against iconic architecture of a city, indeed.

"Main Street Station", Richmond Virginia:  An Architectural Jewel In Brick, Stone & Terracotta
“Main Street Station” (1901), Richmond Virginia: An Architectural Jewel In Brick, Stone & Terracotta

And of the “Seven Hills”? History notes that the “Seven Hills” were declared in a 1937 ordinance by the City of Richmond but the ordinance was never passed. Again, who knew? Although never officially accepted, the city itself was forged around those neighborhoods which are believed to have shaped the city’s history. The “Seven Hills” are Union Hill, Council Chamber Hill, French Garden Hill, Navy Hill, Gambles Hill, Shockoe Hill and the oldest, Church Hill. A brief history lesson, indeed. The locals are aware of these “Hills” that comprise of the city of Richmond. Although there are no signs visible, perhaps the hills that rise above the city will surely notify you that you are within the distinction of another area of this southern city.

"Seven Hills" Of Richmond/1946 Richmond Times Dispatch
“Seven Hills” Of Richmond/1946 Richmond Times Dispatch
Brick, Ironwork & Antebellum Style:  Richmond, Virginia
Brick, Ironwork & Antebellum Style: Richmond, Virginia
Architectural Delights Within A Southern City:  Richmond, Virginia
Architectural Delights Within A Southern City: Richmond, Virginia
Varied Architecture Within A City With Antebellum History: Richmond, Virginia
Varied Architecture Within A City With Antebellum History: Richmond, Virginia
Architectural Interest:  The Southern City Of Richmond, Virginia
Architectural Interest: The Southern City Of Richmond, Virginia
Architectural Beauty:  Richmond, Virginia
Architectural Beauty: Richmond, Virginia
Vivid, Painted Brick & Architectural Details Within Richmond, Virginia
Vivid, Painted Brick & Architectural Details Within Richmond, Virginia
Architectural Interest:  Richmond, Virginia.pdf p 8
Architectural Interest: Richmond, Virginia.pdf p 8
Architectural Features:  Facades & Details, Richmond Virginia
Architectural Features: Facades & Details, Richmond Virginia
Red Brick & Architectural Delights:  Richmond, Virginia
Red Brick & Architectural Delights: Richmond, Virginia
Landmark Architecture In Richmond, Virginia
Landmark Architecture In Richmond, Virginia
History & Architecture:  Richmond, Virginia
History & Architecture: Richmond, Virginia
Southern Brick & Architecture:  Richmond, Virginia
Southern Brick & Architecture: Richmond, Virginia
Varied Visuals Of Interest:  Richmond, Virginia
Varied Visuals Of Interest: Richmond, Virginia
The Historic "Jefferson Hotel" (1895):  Richmond, Virginia
The Historic “Jefferson Hotel” (1895): Richmond, Virginia
Varied Details Of Architecture:  Richmond, Virginia
Varied Details Of Architecture: Richmond, Virginia
A Southern City Of Architectural Jewels:  Richmond, Virginia
A Southern City Of Architectural Jewels: Richmond, Virginia
Hollywood Cemetery Overlooking The James River/Richmond, Virginia
Hollywood Cemetery (1849): History,Legend & Gothic Landscape Overlooking The James River/Richmond, Virginia
City Street Scenes:  The Hills &; Architecture Of Richmond, Virginia
City Street Scenes: The Hills &; Architecture Of Richmond, Virginia
Striking Architecture Within Richmond, Virginia
Striking Architecture Within Richmond, Virginia

Architecture and its details. Life is all about the details. It is the architectural details of this great city that is layered in early American history that my camera zoomed in on. Truth be told, some of the images were taken from a car window. For certain, much territory can be covered from the car. Alas, I was the sightseer this time rather than the driver. In a city that was very familiar to me, my lens found new details with which to appreciate. Looking at the city with a renewed perspective, if you will. As my mantra is always “look up” and appreciate the details, my camera honed in on those details and embellishments. History’s structures of visual interest surrounded. Renewed perspective and deeper appreciation. The visual journey from behind the lens always endures to inspire me. The scenery and life that whirls past us, captured, from behind my lens…

Kristin

PS: When I left this city, I boarded an Amtrak train with a one-way ticket to Chicago. Perhaps when you leave a city, your appreciation grows deeper for the recollections of what each city offers. Appreciation. And of Chicago? Now living within its outskirts, it still is “My kind of town”….

Myself/Main Street Station Balcony/Richmond, Virginia
Myself/Main Street Station Balcony/Richmond, Virginia

“Ones destination is never a place, but a new way of seeing things”
-Henry Miller

A Year Of Exterior Color Inspirations: The Painted Front Door

January, February, March & April
January, February, March & April
May, June, July & August
May, June, July & August
September, October, November & December
September, October, November & December

The painted front door. A striking focal point that marks our entries with distinction. Curb appeal. Although much can be said of the different colors a door can hold, the year in review is a mere appreciation of 12 colors of distinction. The doorway to our interiors holds an opportunity of expression and a canvas, in which within the respect of architecture, a bold or classic color becomes the focal point. Layers of painted allure, indeed.

For those that wish to linger upon compilations of color beyond what is presented in this post, merely search this blog for “Exterior Color Inspirations”. Below is a closer look at the colors and hues of painted delight…

January:  The "Black Painted Door"
January: The “Black” Painted Door
February:  The "Pink" Door
February: The Unexpected “Pink” Painted Door
March:  The Brilliant "Green" Door
March: The Brilliant “Green” Painted Door
April: The Regal "Purple" Painted Door
April: The Regal “Purple” Painted Door
May: The Bright "Yellow" Painted Door
May: The Bright “Yellow” Painted Door
June:  The Brilliant "Blue" Painted Door
June: The Brilliant “Blue” Painted Door
July:  The Brilliant "Red" Painted Door
July: The Brilliant “Red” Painted Door
Aug: The Tranquil "Turqouise"  Door
Aug: The Tranquil “Turqouise” Door
September:  The Rich Allure Of The "Brown"  Painted & Stained  Door
September: The Rich Allure Of The “Brown” Painted & Stained Door
October: The Unexpected & Brilliant "Orange" Painted Door
October: The Unexpected & Brilliant “Orange” Painted Door
November: The Understated "Gray" Exterior Door
November: The Understated “Gray” Exterior Door
December:  The Classic & Pure "White" Painted Door
December: The Classic & Pure “White” Painted Door

Consider with appreciation the various colors and hues that adorn the exterior world. Even if the mere idea of some of these colors present an unexpected appeal, the appreciation of boldness and impact is worthy of our attention. Color changes the world and certainly changes our personal exterior worlds. Whether timeless or unexpected hues, the coating of our worlds in paint (or stain) will certainly change our perspective and add interest to our exterior worlds, indeed…

Kristin

“Painting is silent poetry”- Plutarch

“We paint the colors of our life rainbow”- T. Hameed

Form & Function: The Architectural Distinction Of The Fireplace Within The Interior

Interior Form & Function:  The Fireplace
Interior Form & Function: The Fireplace

The form and function of the fireplace endures to appeal within our interior spaces. Considered one of the most “historically enduring and desirable elements” of the home, the distinctive addition of a fireplace goes far in creating a focal point. The visual appeal and warm ambiance of the hearth and mantle of this architectural element of purpose is a trend that will never fade from the designs of builders and interior designers. Alas, whether an ornate vintage fireplace or a simplistic design, the beauty and elegance of a fireplace lends style with a glowing appeal. Divine in the depths of Winter and a decorative focal point during any season. A fireplace is not only architectural structure designed to contain a fire for heating but also for the assets of generating relaxing ambiance within our interior spaces. Form and function. Of course, a brief appreciation of this architectural structure’s past…

The fascination and importance of fire transcends back to the beginning of time. The original source of light, heat and food was considered a basic element of life to the ancient Greeks and ancient Romans. In fact, related to the ancient Greek goddess Heista, ancient Rome’s goddess “Vesta” was the goddess of the flame, hearth and domestic life. Who knew? The Latin word for “hearth” is “focus” which in English is used to refer to “a center or activity of interest”. The term “Hearth” in historic and modern usage, is a “brick or stone lined fireplace, with or without an oven, used for heating and originally also used for cooking food”. The terms “hearth and home” and “keep the home fires burning” are certainly linked to the flames of delight within the interior. Alas, it is the containment of the fire that would develop over the centuries. As the fireplace has been a central and integral part of a home and the interior for centuries the evolution of this interior element would continue to progress. In 1529 Europe the structure of the fireplace and its chimney evolved into not only a structural element within a home but with furthered decorative appeal with intricately patterned brick chimneys and ornate fireplaces. It was during the 16th & 18th century that key developments would heighten the flame of interior appeal. In fact, during the 16th century, plaster artisans would embark upon the molding of fireplaces and the embellishment with fireplace mantles. Design married with function and the beginning of an enduring trade, for certain. Additional improvements were in 1678, when England’s Prince Rupert, nephew of Charles I, raised the grate of the fireplace which improved the airflow and venting system. Following Rupert, in 1715 France’s Cardinal Polignac improved the mechanical arrangements of the fireplace. In 1745 one of the founding fathers of American, Benjamin Franklin, using the combined improvements of both Prince Rupert and Cardinal de Polignac, developed a convection chamber that improved the efficiency and airflow, introduced as the “Pennsylvanian”. The designs combined created the foundation for the modern fireplace, indeed…

England's Prince Rupert, France's Cardinal Polignac & America's Benajamin Franklin
England’s Prince Rupert, France’s Cardinal Polignac & America’s Benajamin Franklin

For certain the design of fireplaces evolved from one of necessity to one of visual interest within the interior world. Beyond warmth on cold days, the fireplace had become a focal point within the home that dwellers would gather around. The “Hearth” beckoned, indeed. By the 1800’s most fireplaces were said to have consisted of two parts: the surround and the insert. The mantlepiece and the side supports were usually plaster, carved wood, marble, granite or brick. The insert, which is where the fire burned, was typically cast iron backed with decorative tiles. Alas, the Victorian era would certainly embrace the fireplace and the embellishments and decorative tools and screens that were required to utilize it. Seen as a constant in architecture, fireplaces are a feature within the world of the interior. The designs and styles reflected throughout the ages continue to prove not only warmth and comfort but decorative distinctive appeal and focal point

Aesthetic Appeal:  The Sculptural Form Of The Fireplace
Aesthetic Appeal: The Sculptural Form Of The Fireplace
Interior Appeal:  The Decoration Of The Fireplace Within The Interior
Interior Appeal: The Decoration Of The Fireplace Within The Interior
Elegance Paired With Usefulness:  The Architectural Appeal Of The Fireplace
Elegance Paired With Usefulness: The Architectural Appeal Of The Fireplace
A Timeless Warming Trend Within The Interior:  The Fireplace
A Timeless Warming Trend Within The Interior: The Fireplace
Distinctive Appeal Of Form & Function Within The Interior: The Fireplace
Distinctive Appeal Of Form & Function Within The Interior: The Fireplace
Modern Style With A Glowing Appeal:  The Fireplace
Modern Style With A Glowing Appeal: The Fireplace
Elegance & Architectural Focal Point:  The Fireplace
Elegance & Architectural Focal Point: The Fireplace
The Enduring Fireplace Within The Interior
The Enduring Fireplace Within The Interior
Timeless Architectural Feature Of Form & Function:   The Grand Fireplace
Timeless Architectural Feature Of Form & Function: The Grand Fireplace

Consider the glory of the fireplace. The mere line and shape of the fireplace form a compelling display within the interior. Whether found with wood carvings, plaster or marble, whether an existing period piece, a salvaged piece of historical architecture, a classic brick surround or a modern variation of simplistic style, the focal point within the interior of the fireplace will endure to appeal. Timeless. The glow of the embers are certain to bring with it an inward warmth. Function and aesthetic appeal. Perhaps there is no sound that brings more comfort, relaxation and warmth than the roar of the fire and the glow of its burning embers. Enchanting. And of the mantle shelf? Oh, the decoration of the mantle! Awaiting a rotating seasonal or decorative display of our personal embellishments, for certain. Consider with appreciation this element of focal point. Form and function with architectural distinction within the interior, indeed…

Kristin


“To fireside happiness, to hours of ease blest with that charm, the certainty to please”
-Samuel Rogers (English Poet, 1763-1855)

Exterior Color Inspirations: The Understated Elegance Of The Painted “Gray” Door

Understated Elegance:  The Gray Painted Door
Understated Elegance: The Gray Painted Door

Shades of gray. A transition between the two colors of black and white, the striking, neutral statement of gray layers the exterior door in understated style. The monochrome, neutral color of “gray” (or “grey”) is perfection in a blend of black and white. Grayscale. As the deeper tones are considered dramatic and mysterious, the lighter tones seem to illuminate with silvery appeal and often hold a blue undertone cast. A subtle color that offers depth in bolder tones, the sophistication that the rich, pewter gray or softer gray hues offer when coated in layers of paint on the exterior door is certainly worthy of a visual appreciation. Perhaps a modern backdrop, the neutral palette of gray provide an unassuming appeal. Understated elegance, in tones of gray, indeed.

Often considered an alternative to white and referred to as the “New White” and “The chameleon among colors”, it is interesting to note the history of this hue and the variations of spelling. The first recorded use of the word “Grey” or “Gray” in the English language as a color name was in 700 AD. The traditional spelling of the word “Gray” is “Grey”, which is the British, Canadian, Australian, Irish, New Zealand and South African spelling. However, “Gray” is said to also have been common in the UK until the second half of the 20th century. “Grey” is the accepted variant in American English, but the common and perhaps preferred spelling is “Gray” since its introduction to American English around 1825. That said, having learned as a child to spell the color as “Gray”, it is indeed the spelling I chose. No matter the spelling, the color hue of gray is one of distinctive appeal

Muted Shade Of Classic Appeal:  Gray
Muted Shade Of Classic Appeal: Gray
Elegant Tradition:  The Understated Gray Exterior Painted Door
Elegant Tradition: The Understated Gray Exterior Painted Door
A Modern Appeal Of A Classic Neutral:  The  Gray Painted Door
A Modern Appeal Of A Classic Neutral: The Gray Painted Door
Refined Neutral:  The Exterior Painted Gray Door
Refined Neutral: The Exterior Painted Gray Door
Layered In Traditional Appeal:  The Lighter Shades Of Gray
Layered In Traditional Appeal: The Lighter Shades Of Gray
Nuances Of An Elegant Neutral:  Timeless Gray Painted Exterior Doors
Nuances Of An Elegant Neutral: Timeless Gray Painted Exterior Doors

Consider the understated elegance of gray hues painted on the door that leads to our interior worlds. Evoking warm or cool tones, the timeless neutral of gray is a classic refined neutral. Whether the hue is a rich, deep shade or muted, subtle and softer variations, the luxuriousness of gray painted on the doorway deserves consideration. The sophistication of gray offers a distinguished and modern appeal paired with classic elegance. Understated elegance, indeed.

Kristin

PS: Although this color is seasonless, perhaps the color gray reflects the month of November for those of us that have lived under the November gray skies in the East Coast as well as in the Midwest. The beauty of gray, however, is certain and to be appreciated regardless. Seasonless beauty.

“If months were marked by colors, November in New England would be colored gray”.
-Madeleine M. Kunin

Exterior Color Inspirations: The Unexpected & Brilliant Orange Door

The Brilliant Hued Orange Exterior Door
The Brilliant Hued Orange Exterior Door

The vibrant and brilliant orange door. Painted the color of carrots, pumpkins and saffron the orange exterior door provides unexpected delight. The exterior door, layered in a hue that ranges in the color spectrum between red and yellow, the color hue orange provides a bright statement of visual interest and distinction. The color orange painted on a front door seems to illuminate the world with pure, extraordinary color. An energetic and uplifting color that perhaps brings us exhilaration and bliss.

Of course, an acknowledgement of the color’s history…
The color orange existed in Europe before the late 15th century but remained nameless. The color hue was simply referred to as “yellow-red”. Who knew? It is stated that both Spanish and Portuguese merchants brought the first orange trees to Europe from Asia during the late 15th and early 16th century and the new name was given of “naranga” which would eventually become referred to as “orange” in English. Of interest, in parts of Germany, the Netherlands, and Russia, the orange fruit was and is still said to be called the “Chinese Apple”. Again, who knew? For certain, the vibrant, brilliant orange and stunning red-orange hue demands attention. The brilliant & bold earthy hue of orange certainly shares the attention of red. Bold and bright, indeed.

A visual appreciation of the statement color of orange painted on the doors that lead to our interior worlds…

Vibrant Delight: Orange Hued Exterior Delight
Vibrant Delight: Orange Hued Exterior Delight
Orange Impact:  The Bold & Energetic Orange Hued Door
Orange Impact: The Bold & Energetic Orange Hued Door
Radiating Warmth:  The Bold Orange Painted Door
Radiating Warmth: The Bold Orange Painted Door
The Deep Orange-Red Door:  A Statement Of Bold Impact
The Deep Orange-Red Door: A Statement Of Bold Impact
The Striking Orange Door
The Striking Orange Door

Consider the bold impact of the orange hued painted exterior door. Perhaps unexpected when found coating the door to the interior world, this color hue deserves our appreciation. Although the color orange itself is associated with the Autumn season, I state the case for this brilliant hue throughout the year. No matter the season, the painted hue of orange never fails to delight. Alas, perhaps our appreciation is greater during the season of the pumpkin, but with seasonless style the painted orange door will endure. Bright & vivid, indeed…

Kristin

“Orange is the happiest color”- Frank Sinatra

Exterior Color Inspirations: The Classic Brilliant & Bold Painted “Red” Door

A Dramatic Greeting:  The Vivid &  Bold Painted Red Door
A Dramatic Greeting: The Vivid & Bold Painted Red Door

The dramatic color of red. Bold and vibrant, the color red holds dramatic variation within its various shades and hues. And when painted in thick coats of glossy appeal on the doorways to our interiors? Stunning. Alas, it is the deep blue-red lipstick hue that my attention seeks. Whether you view the dramatic crimson red shade as one of elegance and sophistication or the cherry red vibrancy and energetic delight, the painted red hue on the exterior front door certainly deserves our focus.

The painted red door is linked with many associations and connotations over the course of history. Yet perhaps the painted coat of bright red hue coating the front door that relayed the old early American tradition of a sign of “welcome” still presents the same impact from the curbside today. Of note, history states that travelers journeying by horse drawn carriage would know a home was a welcome place to rest by the coating of the painted red front door. Perhaps, the red front door not only stands out as striking curb appeal, but still boldly sends the fearless, energetic greeting of “Welcome”. Alas, a visual appreciation of this brilliant hued painted door

The Brilliant Red Painted Exterior Door:  Impact In Bold Color
The Brilliant Red Painted Exterior Door: Impact In Bold Color
Striking Impact: The Painted Red Exterior Door
Striking Impact: The Painted Red Exterior Door
The Brilliant Red Hued Painted Door
The Brilliant Red Hued Painted Door
Maximum Impact:  Curb Appeal With The Brilliant Red Painted Door
Maximum Impact: Curb Appeal With The Brilliant Red Painted Door
Deep Hue Of Impact:  The Vibrant Painted Red Door
Deep Hue Of Impact: The Vibrant Painted Red Door

Consider the bold brilliance of the red hued painted exterior door. For certain, the door of bold crimson hue will endure to appeal to the exterior world that surrounds us. The timelessness of this classic hue adorning the entrances to our exterior worlds will continue to coat our doorways with distinction and never fade in its visual appeal. The brilliant and bold red painted exterior door is a classic, indeed…

Kristin

PS: With the red painted hue presented on classic doorways to the interior, a further appreciation awaits: the impact within a city’s surrounds of the bold red door.
(I must mention that the image below was provided to me by a follower and long time acquaintance with an incredible urban flare (Thanks, Dan!). Delighted to share the inspiration!
Urban impact of bold red hue, for certain…

Bold Impact Paired With Urban Graffiti:  The Vibrant Red Door
Bold Impact Paired With Urban Graffiti: The Vibrant Red Door

Exterior Color Inspirations: The Regal & Brilliant Painted Blue Door

The Regal Blue Hued Painted Exterior Front Door
The Regal Blue Hued Painted Exterior Front Door

The regal and brilliant painted blue exterior door. Striking and confident. Blue is certainly a distinctive hue to coat the door to our interior worlds…

Of note, the modern English word “Blue” is derived from the Middle English word “Bleu” or “Blewe” and from the Old French word “Bleu”, a “word of Germanic origin related to the Old High German word “Blao”. Although the word “Azure” is used for blue, in many languages there is no single word for blue, but rather different words for various hues of blue, such as light or dark blue. Of note, the ancient Greeks, who are said to have imported the blue indigo dye from India, classified colors by their intensity of light and dark rather than by their hue. Who knew? Of additional interest, in Ancient Egypt, the color blue was associated with the sky and divinity. Even the Ancient Romans coated the walls in Pompeii with frescoes of brilliant blue skies. A color coated in history, for certain…

And of the painted hues of blue coating the door to our personalized spaces? Worthy of an acknowledgement and visual appreciation…

Blue Hues:  The Painted Exterior Front Door
Blue Hues: The Painted Exterior Front Door
Dramatic & Regal:  The Painted Blue Exterior Door
Dramatic & Regal: The Painted Blue Exterior Door
Brilliant Delight:  The Exterior Door In Painted Blue Hues
Brilliant Delight: The Exterior Door In Painted Blue Hues
Various Styles Painted  Blue:  Exterior Doors Of Distinction
Various Styles Painted Blue: Exterior Doors Of Distinction

Consider the brilliance of a blue hued painted exterior door. Alas, whether royal blue, lapis blue, indigo or even paler shades of blue, the coated hue carries with it a confident and distinctive welcome. A brilliant hue that presents a striking entrance. A regal and brilliant hue on the door to our exterior worlds, indeed…

Kristin

“Let the blue sky meet the blue sea and all is blue for a time” – Moncy Barbour