The Queen Anne house is a uniquely American form of architecture that was popular in the 19th century. A Queen Anne house is one of a family of Neoclassical designs created by English architect John Nash. These were based on the architecture of Greece and used Renaissance motifs, including arched windows. As time went on, however, this style evolved into something very different from what it was when it first developed.

Going for a Victorian Beauty: The Perfect Architectural Design of Queen Anne House

Today, the Queen Anne house is one of the most sought-after styles for architectural conservation buffs who want to restore a historic property to its former glory. Many people believe that just because it’s old, it can only be beautiful; this is not true!

What is a Queen Anne House?

characteristic of queen anne house

The Queen Anne style is characterized by small windows and ornate window and door moldings. They are often found in the U.S. but have been adopted by many other countries in addition to Canada and the U.S. 

The Queen Anne house is a style of architecture that originated in England. Its name comes from Queen Anne, the last queen of the House of Stuart. Her husband, George II, had built a large house known as Kensington Palace. The palatial style was trendy among the wealthy and well-to-do classes. While it remained unpopular with most people outside of England, it began gaining traction in America. It is sometimes called “Victorian” or “Queen Anne” style. 

The History of Queen Anne Houses

The History of Queen Anne Houses

The idea of designing houses with a unique sense of place has a long history that stretches back to the Renaissance. In England, the architect and writer William Alexander are credited with coining the term “picturesque.” They applied it to a collection of views from across England that could be seen on a journey across the country.

In the Early 18th Century…

queen anne house with front view
  • The term can be traced back to an essay by the Rev. Thomas Malthus
  • He described the various aspects of nature in southern England.
  • Amid a boom in American architecture, the term “Queen Anne style” appeared on the scene. It first appeared in Graham’s Magazine. 
  • The magazine article “Queen Anne Style – The ‘Backwoods’ or Adirondack House” was written by Francis Parkman. 
  • He referred to the style as “backwoods” because it was popular in remote areas of the country and the Midwest, specifically in the Adirondack Mountains of New York State.
  • The style was so popular that a similar magazine article, “Queen Anne Style – Adirondack and Backwoods Houses,” appeared, in which the author wrote, “No style is so well known as the Queen Anne style it would be difficult to find a style so well known as all the others, or so popular in this country… It is the only style which, if the materials were not available, the builder would be willing to construct….” 
  • Parkman’s definition of the Queen Anne style as a style based on “the principles of symmetry, proportion, and unity of effect” and “symmetrical proportion” was followed as the style became popular in America.

In the Late 1800s…

medium-sized queen anne house
  • The Queen Anne style architecture is most often associated with small to medium-sized houses built in rural areas. 
  • A few examples of larger Queen Anne-style architecture are still preserved. 
  • The first of the larger Queen Anne-style homes was built for President and Mrs. Lincoln.
  •  It was built by architects William Heins, Joseph Lyman, and George B. Post. 
  • The house is best known for its distinctive porch. The design of the porch was copied for many other homes in Chicago.
  • Another Queen Anne-style home built for a member of Chicago’s elite was completed in 1873. William K. Douglas designed the house for his son Charles.
  • The first notable large-scale Queen Anne-style home was built in Michigan. 
  • And the last to be constructed before the style became popular in rural areas of the U.S. was built in the suburbs of Detroit.

What Makes a House Queen Anne Style?

Design and Architecture of Queen Anna House

While not all houses built in the late 1800s were designed by the same famed architect, the term “Queen Anne style architecture” is often used to describe a style that combines elements from two of the most well-known 19th-century architects: William Alexander and Daniel Burnham.

The one-and-a-half-story house is a popular style of Victorian architecture. It was especially prominent in England. The style is characterized by its use of elements such as gingerbread, scalloped shingles, balconies, towers, and porches. The Queen Anne house is many things to many people. But they tend to be larger than other Victorian-style homes and have more intricate aesthetics.

Interiors of Queen Anne Style House

Interiors of Queen Anne Style House

The interiors of a Queen Anne-style house are characterized by their exquisite and luxurious design. Rich and ornate furnishings and decor are often used in these homes. They have high ceilings and large windows as well. In general, the overall effect is one of elegance and opulence.

The Queen Anne-style house is typically quite large. And the interiors reflect this with their spacious and well-appointed rooms. There may be several living areas and formal and informal dining areas. The bedrooms are usually large and comfortable, with plenty of storage space.

Queen Anne-style home kitchens are often lavish. They have plenty of counters, cabinet space, and high-end appliances. The bathrooms are also usually quite luxurious. They feature marble or granite countertops and oversized tubs.

Overall, the interiors of Queen Anne-style homes are designed for comfort and elegance. These homes are perfect for those who love entertaining since they offer plenty of space for hosting guests. A Queen Anne-style house is ideal if you want a luxurious and sophisticated home.

Queen Anne Architecture: An Elegant Facade

Exterior of a Queen Anne-style house

The exterior of a Queen Anne-style house is typically very ornate. They have intricate detailing and various textures and colors. The roof is often steeply pitched and may be adorned with decorative gables or dormers. The tall and narrow windows are usually grouped in threes or fours. They are often decorated with elaborate shutters and trim. The front door is typically grand and imposing and is flanked by tall columns or pilasters.

From the outside, a Queen Anne house is often quite grand and imposing, with a large and stately facade. Overall, the effect that architecture creates is grand and elegant.

What Makes A Queen Anne House Different from Other Victorian-Style Homes?

Difference Between Queen Anne House and Victorian-Style Homes

Queen Anne has a reputation for being a throwback home style — an era when Victorian-era architecture was in vogue. Yet the home didn’t lose its modern design and architectural characteristics. 

  • The roof type of a Queen Anne house is sloped, steep, and gabled along with a pitched roof. And a steep roof has a steep chimney.
  • The Queen Anne house was once popular in the USA and some European countries. Victorian-style homes that are more common in North America and Europe took the lead then.
  • The Queen Anne style was more of a specific house style rather than a house design or architectural style. The style featured homes that used materials such as cedar, granite, mahogany, and slate that were in demand at the time. 
  • In addition, Queen Anne-style architecture sometimes incorporated fireplaces and parlors that didn’t exist in Victorian homes. Queen Anne architecture was popular when the Victorian architecture movement took off. 
Interior Of Queen Anne House
  • Queen Anne Victorian house is sometimes called “Victorian” or “neo-colonial.” That is because they incorporate many Victorian-style homes’ architectural and design characteristics. 
  • There are some Victorian-style homes, but they are considered Queen Anne homes. Both styles incorporate architectural elements that were popular in the 19th century. But Victorian-style homes, which took off after Queen Anne-style homes, were popular. They are considered more modern. 
  • Victorian-style homes and Queen Anne-style homes include many architectural and design elements. But most are larger and have a more elaborate architectural style than Queen Anne-style homes. 

9 Types of Queen Anne Architecture

1. Traditional Queen Anne

Traditional Queen Anne House

This type of house is the most common type of Queen Anne style, and it’s also the oldest. The style was created in the mid-1800s and is based on the Chippendale style. 

What Makes it Unique?

A few common features in traditional Queen Anne house includes tall, narrow windows, wide overhangs (roof overhangs), narrow porches, and intricate geometric moldings. The Queen Anne style became popular for wealthy Americans to build in the early to mid-1800s. 

2. Tudor-style Queen Anne

Tudor-style Queen Anne House

The Tudor-style Queen Anne is similar to a traditional Queen Anne. But it features unique and smaller windows. The style is very similar to English Tudor-style architecture. 

What Makes it Unique?

The main difference between the Tudor-style Queen Anne and the traditional Queen Anne is that the former has different types of windows and doors. Some other features that are often used in Tudor-style houses include a more ornate porch, gables, and different types of moldings.

3. Cape Cod Queen Anne

Cape Cod Queen Anne House

This Queen Anne style was used to create homes built in areas of the Northeastern U.S. with sandy soil. These homes, which were first developed in the mid-1800s, include windows and moldings. 

What Makes it Unique?

They meant to make the house look like it was part of a coastal environment. For example, the house could feature different shades of green. And many of the home features are on the exterior. 

4. Queen Anne (East Indian): 

East Indian style Queen Anne  House

This type of Queen Anne house was popular during the mid-1800s to early 1900s. And the East Indian style inspired it. 

What Makes it Unique?

The main feature of the East Indian Queen Anne style is its large, gable-shaped roof. The style is similar to the Queen Anne style. But it’s characterized by different types of windows and different moldings. 

5. Queen Anne French Provincial

Queen Anne French Provincial House

Many people find this type of Queen Anne house beautiful. And there are many different styles within the French Provincial Queen Anne. The French Renaissance style inspired this style. And the French countryside inspired many homes.

What Makes it Unique?

It has a large front porch. A few of the features of the French Provincial style include high ceilings, wood finishes, and lavish window and door moldings. 

6. Queen Anne Revival

Queen Anne colonial style of architecture. 

This Queen Anne style is similar to the Queen Anne Colonial style. And many people think of it as a type of Queen Anne Colonial style. The Queen Anne style inspired it, but it used a colonial style of architecture

What Makes it Unique?

The style includes large, tall windows and moldings that look like they’re made of stone. 

7. King’s Park Queen Anne

King's Park Queen Anne

This Queen Anne style was initially used to create houses in Montreal’s Old North Shore neighborhood. They were named after one of Montreal’s historic parks. For example, there’s a house known as the “Tulip House.” Because the Montreal park of the same name originally inspired it. 

What Makes it Unique?

They’re characterized by stylish windows and doors and are often located on large lots. The style was used by wealthy, middle-class, and upper-class Montrealers inspired by English Tudor-style architecture. And some homes have two chimneys. 

8. Queen Anne Colonial

Queen Anne Colonial house

This style, like many others, was inspired by the Colonial style. And it was used to create homes in the U.S. in the 1800s and early 1900s. Some styles, such as the Queen Anne Colonial style, were inspired by Colonial architecture. 

What Makes it Unique?

The Queen Anne style used similar colors and architectural features. But it differed from the Colonial style, influenced by Colonial architecture. Some features of the Queen Anne Colonial style include dark colors like blue, purple, and grey. 

9. Victorian Queen Anne

Victorian Queen Anne House

This type of home resembles the Tudor-style Queen Anne Victorian house. It was used in the early 1900s. 

What Makes it Unique? 

Red colors and dark, heavy woodwork characterize the type of house. Doors and windows were often decorated with different types of ornamentation.

That’s All About Queen Anne House

At its core, a Queen Anne house is defined by the exterior of the building. Crafted predominantly of wood, Queen Anne homes are full of decorative features. They include multiple roofs and windows, conical or pyramidal towers, and deep porches. Besides these features, many Queen Anne-style homes also have an asymmetrical floor plan. It adds visual interest to the house.

The Queen Anne homes were quite popular in Canada and the United States during the late 19th century. Today, they are a very popular choice for builders who want to construct something striking and memorable.


What Are Some of the Most Common Traits of Queen Anne Houses?

Queen Anne style house is identified by its irregular forms, varied rooflines, and decorative elements. The most common traits of Queen Anne homes include: 
Gable Fronts – They have multiple roof lines, usually two or three. 
Finials – They use finials which are decorative elements at the top of a gable. 
Steeply Pitched Roofs – They have steeply pitched roofs which is a characteristic of the Queen Anne style house.
Round Or Octagonal Windows – They use round or octagonal windows, which are an identifying feature of the style.

What Are the Designs for the Roof of Queen Anne Houses?

The roofs of Queen Anne homes are designed in several different ways. Some have a hipped roof, some a gabled roof, some a cross-gable, some are hipped and cross-gabled, and some are asymmetrical. What the roofs of Queen Anne houses all have in common, however, is the use of irregular rooflines, as opposed to rooflines with straight or gently curved lines.

What Are Some of the Things to Consider When It Comes to Queen Anne House Design?

Queen Anne house design is characterized by the prominent “gingerbread” exterior and interior furnishings. The style must feature wood siding, geometric floor plans, and warm, earthy colors.  For Queen Anne house design enthusiasts, the first thing that you should look for is a craftsman-style home. The whole point of this style is to make a home that is warm and inviting.

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