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 In Lifestyle

Architecture: What Defines a Victorian Home?

The style takes its name from the then reigning monarch, Queen Victoria. The materials and design features are hallmarks of the global and local forces at play at that time.

Stepping into a Victorian home can feel like travelling back in time. Either built side by side in terraces or as grand freestanding dwellings, their captivating façades contribute to Melbourne’s unique streetscapes.

The style takes its name from the then reigning monarch, Queen Victoria. The materials and design features are hallmarks of the global and local forces at play at that time.

The industrial revolution made its mark on Australian architecture through the prominent use of steel and sheet glass in homes. During the same period, the gold rush rapidly inflated Melbourne’s wealth and the newly prominent metropolis found an outlet for its success in finely crafted architecture.

Three distinct styles of Victorian architecture were developed in Melbourne and each style can still be found in the city today.

Early Victorian houses are those built between 1840 and 1860 and represent the simplest style of the movement with the most restrained ornamentation. Built in both terraced and freestanding styles, these structures usually feature rendered brickwork and pitched roofs in corrugated iron, tiles or slate.

Mid Victorian houses, spanning the years 1860 to 1875, introduce a greater level of embellishment including leadlight windows and verandahs with cast iron lacework. Decorative patterns occasionally appear in the brickwork of finer domains and interiors are accentuated by elaborate skirtings, architraves, cornices and ceiling roses.

In today’s competitive market, Victorian style homes are highly sought after and often occupy excellent inner city locations.

The final stage of the period, Late Victorian abodes date from 1875 to 1901 and reflect the increased wealth of the time. While the form from earlier types is maintained, these residences appear grander and more opulent. Lavish embellishments include multi-coloured and tuck pointed brickwork as well as complex tiled patterns on verandah floors and entry pathways. Interiors originally featured bold and contrasting colour palettes.

In today’s competitive market, Victorian style homes are highly sought after and often occupy excellent inner city locations. The single level proportions appeal to a broad range of buyers and present cost effective redecoration and renovation opportunities.

If you have any questions or would like to discover our current selection of Victorian properties, please contact our Marshall White Sales Team (03) 9822 9999.

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