People often misuse the terms ‘traditional’ and ‘modern’ as synonyms for old and new. In reality, there is more to modern and traditional architecture than age.
In fact, some modern homes are almost a hundred years old, and many
newly-built homes carry on the traditional style.
The term ‘traditional’ applies to a board range of home-building styles, each with its own unique features. In general, any home drawing from historic styles, such as Victorian, Colonial, Craftsman, or Neoclassical architecture, can fall into the category of a traditional home.
Though these styles differ in origin, traditional homes tend to have several common features. These features include large, open porches with overhanging beams and rafters, dormers, and a tall, pointed roof with one or more gables.
They use traditional building materials such as brick, wood, plaster, stucco, and stone.
Modern architecture, on the other hand, rejects those classical flourishes
in favor of a simple, clean design.
Where traditional homes are adorned with elegant details, modern homes strip away the frills to let the basic structure speak for itself.
Many modern homes feature an at
or low-sloped roof, straight lines, and a clean exterior with little to no
texture. Modern construction uses newer, more technologically-advanced building materials like reinforced steel, concrete, and plastic.
Original traditional homes (those built in the 19 and early 20 century) are mainly found in city centers and long-established
However, many newly-built homes are designed to imitate traditional construction. While
these homes may appear traditional, they often incorporate more modern materials and interior design sensibilities.
While traditional homes have a larger footprint than modern homes, space is typically divided into a number of
small, single-purpose rooms rather than a few large ones. After all, traditional homes were designed for traditional
households, which were much larger back in the day!
In keeping with the minimalist design, modern plans
are optimized to make the most of the space, with multipurpose
rooms and seamless, open-concept spaces. Many builders borrow the open-concept design for new homes,
including many that look traditional on the outside.
WINDOWS AND LIGHTING
Today, we have the technology to produce windows of all different shapes and sizes. Modern homes take full
advantage of this, featuring large windows and skylights for an abundance of natural light. This makes their relatively
modest interior space feel open and airy.
By comparison, traditional homes usually have smaller, symmetrically-placed windows of a similar shape and size. As
a result, they require more artificial
lighting. However, traditional homes often make up for what they lack in natural
light with charming details like stained glass and hand-carved woodworking and antique interior lighting.
WHICH IS BETTER?
The picturesque porches and gables of a traditional home are inherently warm and inviting, and the intricate details
make it feel like a place with a story. However, modern homes are not without their charm, using natural light and sleek lines bring creativity into our lives.