Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Plans and Elevations

The Red House was designed specifically to fit the need of Philip Webb's client, William Morris. Morris was strongly in favour of the authenticity and quality achieved in the hand-made products instead of machine-made soulless merchandise during the on-going Industrial Revolution. Both Morris and the architect, Philip Webb, shared similar ideals, which led to their decision of working with all natural materials by hand instead of solely using machines in the making. Exposed brick was used for the exterior to reveal the exact material and process carried out in the construction of the house; nothing was hidden from the exterior--all hand-work was there for display. Aesthetically, the red bricks also had an natural and unique sense of beauty that lacked in industrially manufactured goods.


The L-shaped layout of the house proved effective in maximizing the efficient and clarity of room distribution. The asymmetrical nature was also important because the house was modeled after traditional Gothic structures; also along this theme, there are steep roofs, prominent chimneys, cross gables and exposed-beam ceilings present:
"The House's design is, as a whole, marked by simplicity and a barn-like structure. The basic architectural layout of Red House is an L shape; two stories high, with four chimneys and numerous triangular gables. Few windows are the same size, as round, rectangular, and square windows are cleverly integrated into the brick, often with a pointed arch framing the top. Webb followed Ruskin's advice with the details: 'do not be afraid of what is convenient'" (Hollamby)

Everything about the design of the Red House conveys the individuality that only exists in hand-made products. By breaking away from the constrictions of symmetries and perfection, the creation of a much more interesting and lively product was possible. All artifacts inside the Red House, ranging from furniture, drapery, murals, and tiles, were specifically designed and chosen by Webb and Morris, displaying creativity and discouraging mass-production.


Harkness, Kristen. "William Morris and Philip Webb, Red House." Smarthistory. Accessed December 8,

Hollamby, Edward. Arts and Crafts Houses. London: Phaidon Press, 1999.


  1. thanks for your information, it´s great and very useful for my studies.

  2. Sería tan amable de proporcionarme la altura de la casa roja de William Morris o un aproximado de ello, es para un trabajo escolar