Architecture / Style / Eastlake

Chronology

  • 1860-1890 (Whiffen)
  • 1870-1890 (Blumenson)
  • 1872-1885 (Roth)

Description

Eastlake was a decorative design popular between around 1870 and 1890. According to John J.-G. Blumenson in Identifying American Architecture (1981): “Porch posts, railings, balusters and pendants were characterized by a massive and robust quality.” Members were worked or turned on a mechanical lathe giving the appearance of heavy legged furniture of the period. Large curved brackets, scrolls, and other stylized elements often were placed at every corner, turn or projection along the façade. Perforated gables and pediments, carved Eastlake panels, and a profusion of spindles and lattice work found along porch eaves added to the complexity of the façade. These lighter elements combined with the heavier and oversized architectural members exaggerated the three-dimensional quality. This ornamentation could be found in houses of various other styles such as Victorian Gothic, Stick Style, and Queen Anne. Named for an English furniture designer and architect, Charles Locke Eastlake (1836-1906), who was a critic of the Gothic Revival style. Gerald Foster in American Houses: A Field Guide to the Architecture of the Home (2004) related how: “Eastlake was not pleased that his name attached to such excesses.”

Variations

Glossary

Sources Cited

Also see Architecture / Style index.