Architects rebelled against Victorian fussiness when they designed rustic Shingle Style homes, popular in the Northeastern United States between 1874 and 1910. Whether sided in shingle, brick, or clapboard, Shingle Style homes marked a significant shift in American housing styles. Shingle architecture broke free from lavish, decorative designs popular in Victorian times. Deliberately rustic, the style suggested a more relaxed, informal style of living. Shingle Style homes could even take on the weather-beaten appearance of a tumble-down shelter on the craggy New England coast, which is why the original architect chose the style for OneRaleigh.
But this simplicity was, of course, a ruse. Shingle Style homes were never the humble dwellings of fishing folk. Built in seaside resorts like Newport, Cape Cod, eastern Long Island and coastal Maine, many of these houses were vacation “cottages” for the very wealthy. By covering most or all of a building with shingles stained a single color, architects created an uniform, unembellished surface. Monotoned and unornamented, these homes celebrated the honesty of form, the purity of line.
Technically, the word “shingle” is not a style, but a siding material. Victorian shingles were usually thinly cut cedar which was stained rather than painted. Vincent Scully, an architectural historian, popularized the term Shingle Style to describe a type of Victorian home in which complex shapes were united by a taut skin of these cedar shingles.You will see that OneRaleigh and its neighbors have remained loyal to this siding technique which gives each house a unique character.