Carpenter Gothic…Another Good Reason To Buy A New Tool

by projectbuddy


This Saturday, I went to the Third Annual Boykins PumpkinFest. Mostly this was to maintain my “100% Attendance” status and see familiar faces while passing along fond messages from my mom to dear old friends, but partly this was to search for some inspiration for the next stage of renovation.

One of my favorite old houses is this one which I believe is in the American Carpenter Gothic style. Although the roof is not as steep as other examples, it has many of the other characteristics that make it an inspiration to anyone who enjoys working with wood like me.

From research, I found that this style owes a great deal to the invention of the scroll saw. I can imagine how people who enjoyed working with wood let their imaginations create freely after discovering what a scroll saw can do. Examining new possibilities and testing limits can be exciting.


Walking by this house as a little guy many years ago was an experience. There was no screening on the porch and no wheelchair ramp back then. Perhaps you can imagine it in better condition and painted as white as white can be in the bright summer sun.

It seemed to be made of stone instead of wood, and being just a few doors down from the Methodist church, if God ever needed an extra house, I thought that this surely must have been it. It’s strange how things can make such strong impressions on us when we are young.

Although unable to find any specific design solutions for my current project, I did find a connection to architects, carpenters, and woodworkers from an historic style that should be preserved. There is no telling what a new tool or technique can inspire. Maybe it’s time to explore the tool aisle!


These photos were taken October 2013. Board and batten siding is one of the characteristics of Carpenter Gothic architecture. It was used in this house, but the semicircular cut outs and extra detailing along the top disguise the boards and battens.