American Gothic Style

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American Gothic Style
American Gothic Style

What it is

This style is characterized by the Early American symbols and imagery found in the painting: Gothic windows, board and batten siding, standing-seam metal roofs, pitchforks, aprons and the colors barn red, denim blue and black.

>> Rustic Style

Why it works

There’s a reason so many children’s books deal with farm life or are set on a farm. Farms remind us of a less complicated time when life was easier, at least in our collective imagination. There’s also an industrial spirit to yesteryear’s farm structures that makes them almost modern.

Farms remind us of a less complicated time when life was easier
Farms remind us of a less complicated time when life was easier

You’ll love it if

Your style is more unfussy than elaborate, you secretly consider aprons and overalls ideal daywear, or you think a touch of Puritan is sexy.

Style Secret: Gothic Forms

This house, designed by Edward Deegan of Konstant Architecture Planning, is clearly a reference to the painting. In fact, the architects call it American Gothic Farmhouse. Although it’s bigger than the original, this version contains the same Gothic windows on the top level and simple two-over-two-style windows on the lower story.

Konstant Architecture Planning
Konstant Architecture Planning

Landscape designer Andrew Renn made a smaller but no less dramatic Gothic statement with this garden gate.

It’s easy to bring that Gothic peak into the interior, as the architects at Polhemus Savery Da Silva did with this stone fireplace.

And Edward Deegan Architects repeated the form in a long hallway.

Something different

Not willing to make a lasting architectural statement? Try using changeable features, such as the light fixture here, installed by Edward Deegan Architects, or the arched chair below, selected by interior designer Celia James.