SPANISH COLONIAL REVIVAL
Maybe it’s because of my upbringing in California, but I have a total affinity for Spanish Colonial architecture. To me, it’s not only one of the most interesting styles, but it’s the most livable.
The renaissance of this style gained steam in the early 20th century, which drew characteristics and inspiration from classic Spanish Colonial architecture of the 1800s. The newer homes borrow elements from the simpler mission style buildings that were so prevalent in California.
The revival homes are fraught with so many characteristics that I love; tile and iron craftsmanship, natural materials, and intimate outdoor space (to name a few). When Nate and I were looking for a home in Los Angeles to plant our roots and grow our family, these details are some of the ones we knew we wanted.
One of the greatest things about this style is no matter how big they are, there’s always a sense of intimacy to them. The sense of warmth and comfort you feel is reflective of the period. There’s an indoor outdoor flow that encourages relaxation and a connection to nature as well. The house that we settled on is emblematic of this ethos.
I just love the spirit of Spanish Colonial houses. Here’s a closer look at some of my favorite design elements.
This is one of our outdoor spaces at our home. Courtyards are such a great feature, and even the homes with small footprints manage to squeeze in a tiny courtyard. They often act as the heart of the home, where people from all the surrounding rooms can come together and enjoy each other's company. We love ours, a little slice of blue skies and fresh air in the middle of our home.
2. ARCHED DOORWAYS
I love, love, love arched doorways. In some of my projects, I've even restructured existing rectangular portals and transformed them by adding an arch. The arch draws the eye to and through the door and can really amplify the drama of doors, hallways and thoroughfares.
3. WROUGHT IRON DETAIL
Here's another part of our house that I adore, the wrought iron railing in our foyer. Although we made quite a bit of cosmetic changes after we bought the house, we both agreed we wouldn't touch this element. The intricate design and masterful craftsmanship brings some history to our house, and we love that. Many Spanish Colonial houses have wrought iron detail, railings are common, and so are exterior window grills. I would urge you to keep this detail in your space if you are lucky enough to inherit it!
4. EXPOSED WOOD BEAMS
Another wonderful feature of Spanish Colonial homes is exposed wood beams. This trait is found in a lot of different styles, from Tudor to Modern, and everything in between. It is, however, especially popular in Spanish Colonial, and works great along the other common design elements of the style. This image shows exposed wood beams, terracotta tile floors and wrought iron arched windows. How stunning when all of those come together?