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California bungalow architectural style in australia

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Parts of Australia, particularly the east coast and some southern regions, share a similar climate to California. These environmental similarities, combined with the increasing influence of Hollywood and its promotion of American culture, shifted Australia’s architectural gaze from Britain to the US.

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The decorative Arts and Crafts design movement of the same period also influenced the California Bungalow architecture, which favoured the use of natural materials and championed craftsmanship over industrialised techniques. Frank Lloyd Wright’s designs offer some excellent examples of Arts and Crafts American architecture.

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California Bungalows follow a simpler floor plan than earlier architectural styles, centred around an entrance hallway and leaning towards open-plan living.

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California Bungalows are generally built in brick, and to a lesser extent, with weatherboard or timber. Red or liver-coloured bricks are common, but exteriors can also feature rendered, roughcast and weatherboard finishes. Verandah balustrades are built in timber and brick (exposed and rendered). Gabled roofs (triangular shape) tend to feature shingled detail (overlapping layers of wood, slate or tiling).

Stained glass windows incorporating Arts and Crafts” and Art Nouveau”inspired designs are a popular design characteristic. Bay windows are common, with windows double-hung and grouped together. The interiors were designed in a less decorative manner than the Victorian and Edwardian styles, though ceilings at times featured panelling. Timber floors, window and door frames and picture rails were originally stained dark to contrast the lighter coloured plaster walls.

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While VictorianВ  and EdwardianВ  homes tend to sit within 5″10 km of the major city CBDs, California Bungalows were generally built in the 10″20 km ring.

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