Think Arts and Crafts, and you probably picture a 1920s California bungalow loaded with Stickley furniture. But Arts and Crafts isn't just a house style.
"It was a movement—in art, architecture, furniture, politics—that began in England in the mid-19th century, and pushed back against the brutal working conditions in factories at that time," says architectural historian Maureen Meister, author of Arts & Crafts Architecture: History and Heritage in New England. "Arts and Crafts leaders rejected mass production and celebrated handcraftsmanship."
For home designers, that meant rebelling against the excessive ornamentation of the Victorian era, which they viewed as factory-made junk. They looked back to the preindustrial period of the Middle Ages and Renaissance for their design inspiration. And that's why Arts and Crafts houses in America more resemble those in England, with elements of what we consider Tudor and Gothic architecture—and why the Arlington house falls within the Arts and Crafts style.
Shown: Like the Arlington project, this circa-1895 Arts and Crafts house in New Haven, Connecticut, incorporates half-timbering, steep gables, and other Tudor and Gothic architectural motifs.