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Handsome House Numbers

Photo by Alison Rosa

There are simple house numbers that quietly go about their job displaying your address, and then there are digits so striking they achieve the level of functional art, inviting the gaze of passersby. Just about any set can add a hit of texture or color to your home's entrance, but carefully chosen ones also reinforce its architectural style and make a welcoming first impression.

Most house numbers come in all-weather finishes sealed with lacquer or glaze, but when it comes to choosing a style, the options are almost endless. Materials run the gamut from shiny brass and satin stainless to white clay and terra-cotta tile, with numbers (and, often, letters) rendered in a wide range of typefaces, both traditional and modern. Here we've zeroed in on 21 options that span three general time periods, so whatever era your home dates to, we're sure to have your number.

Pro advice

"Most municipalities require numbers to be at least 4 inches tall so that safety personnel can see them easily from the street, but check local ordinances before mounting new ones."

Terry Talken, co-owner, Shop 4 Classics

19th Century: Hammered Look

Photo by Alison Rosa

Solid, from-the-forge-look numbers fit Cape Cod, Georgian, and Greek Revival–influenced homes, while ornate options make a good match for Queen Anne and other Victorian-era styles.

From: Atlas Homewares

Size: Up to 3½"W × 5½"H

Made of: Zinc with a lacquered copper finish

Cost: About $14 each; Atlas Homewares

Rustic Patina

Photo by Alison Rosa

From: Ashley Norton

Size: Up to 4"W × 6"H

Made of: Solid bronze with a dark oil-rubbed finish

Cost: About $23 each; Door Hardware USA

Filigree Flourishes

Photo by Alison Rosa

From: All Fired Up

Size: Up to 4"W × 8"H

Made of: Glazed ceramic

Cost: About $20 each; Habitatter

Stylish Slant

Photo by Alison Rosa

From: Ashley Norton

Size: Up to 2"W × 4"H

Made of: Solid bronze with a light finish

Cost: About $21 each; Door Hardware USA

Textural Twigs

Photo by Alison Rosa

From: Pottery Barn

Size: Up to 6"W × 10"H

Made of: Cast aluminum with a bronze finish

Cost: About $14 each; Pottery Barn

Classic Brass

Photo by Alison Rosa

From: Restoration Hardware

Size: Up to 3"W × 5"H

Made of: Polished solid brass

Cost: About $10 each; Restoration Hardware

Victorian Vines

Photo by Alison Rosa

From: Rocheford Handmade Tile

Size: Up to 4½"W × 6"H

Made of: Hand-glazed terra-cotta

Cost: About $25 each; Rocheford Handmade Tile

Exclusive TOH discount! 15 percent off. Details at This Old House Deals.

Bright Enamel

Photo by Alison Rosa

From: Ecco by Fuoriserie

Size: Up to 2½"W × 4¼"H

Made of: Crackled glass and ceramic

Cost: About $7 each; Historic Houseparts

Aged Look

Photo by Alison Rosa

From: Rejuvenation

Size: Up to 3¼"W × 5⅛"H

Made of: Hand-hammered steel with a weathered iron finish

Cost: About $20 each; Rejuvenation

Pre-War: Scroll Style

Photo by Alison Rosa

Hand-craftsmanship and nature motifs suit bungalows and early-20th-century revival styles. Stream-lined digits are a good match for Prairie and Art Deco architecture.

From: Mission Metalworks

Size: Up to 3½"W × 5"H

Made of: Recycled white bronze that will patina

Cost: About $25 each; Shop 4 Classics

Artful Flourishes

Photo by Alison Rosa

From: Atlas Homewares

Size: Up to 3¼"W × 4"H

Made of: Cast zinc with a black lacquered finish

Cost: About $10 each; Atlas Homewares

Matte Mission

Photo by Alison Rosa

From: Atlas Homewares

Size: Up to 3"W × 5½"H

Made of: Cast zinc with a lacquered nickel finish

Cost: About $14 each; Atlas Homewares

Craftsman Cattails

Photo by Alison Rosa

From: Rocheford Handmade Tile

Size: Up to 4½"W × 6"H

Made of: Hand-glazed white clay

Cost: About $25 each; Rocheford Handmade Tile

Deco Digits

Photo by Alison Rosa

From: Porteous Tiles

Size: Up to 3"W × 6"H

Made of: Hand-painted glazed porcelain

Cost: About $22 each; Kensington Art Tiles

Hand-Pressed Clay

Photo by Alison Rosa

From: Ravenstone Tiles

Size: Up to 4"W × 6"H

Made of: Hand-glazed ceramic

Cost: About $30 each; Ravenstone Tiles

Exclusive TOH discount! 20 percent off. Details at This Old House Deals.

Nouveau Numerals

Photo by Alison Rosa

From: Porteous Tiles

Size: Up to 3"W × 6"H

Made of: Hand-painted glazed porcelain

Cost: About $22 each; Fair Oak Workshops

Mid-Century: Eames Era

Photo by Alison Rosa

Accessorize ranches and more modern homes from the 1950s and 1960s with bold, graphic numerals.

From: Heath Ceramics

Size: Up to 4"W × 4"H

Made of: Glazed ceramic

Cost: About $45 each; Heath Ceramics

Cleaned-Up Classic

Photo by Alison Rosa

From: Atlas Homewares

Size: Up to 3"W × 6"H

Made of: Cast zinc with a black finish

Cost: About $21 each; Atlas Homewares

Peel and Stick

Photo by Alison Rosa

From: Atlas Homewares

Size: Up to 4½"W × 4"H

Made of: Brushed stainless steel with easy-mount adhesive backing

Cost: About $21 each; Atlas Homewares

Bar-Code Script

Photo by Alison Rosa

From: Ecco by Fuoriserie

Size: Up to 2½"W × 4"H

Made of: Cast brass with a copper-plated finish

Cost: About $13 each; Comfort House

Modern Markers

Photo by Alison Rosa

From: Heath Ceramics

Size: Up to 3"W × 6"H

Made of: Glazed ceramic

Cost: About $45 each; Heath Ceramics