Fachwerk houses: features of European design

Fachwerk houses: features of European design

Country houses are rated not only for comfort for those living there, but also for design features. The time when “just a good-quality” house was the ultimate dream is irrevocably gone. Now more and more experiments are underway with style and appearance, among them such a direction as half-timbered is gaining popularity.

Specific traits

The stylistic trend that emerged in Germany is literally translated by the phrase “construction in sections, panels”. And such a definition should be recognized as capacious as possible, expressing the features of this approach in comparison with others.. Half-timbered houses can be recognized by the following points:

  • Beams and rafters are used, combined in the form of unique frame structures.
  • Color combinations are based on the principle of contrast (many projects include a combination of light backgrounds and dark decorative designs).

  • Synthetic finishing is not allowed.
  • The main emphasis is on natural light (there are many windows, textiles are not used or the lightest is hung).
  • There is certainly a home.

In a small area, revealing the design merits of a half-timbered building will not work, on the contrary, it will only visually take away part of the space.

Technology has gone far ahead in comparison with the prototypes of this style that appeared at the end of the Middle Ages. Often used are polypropylene boards, precast panels, cement and chip mix boards. The German standard in construction implies that before the start of work, all materials will be impregnated with preparations from fungus, rotting, fire-fighting compounds.

Prevention of decay is also ensured by waterproofing the base: a layer of protective material is placed over the foundation, a strapping ring with a section of 5×20 cm is necessarily used. The modern approach is based on the use of solid or glued coniferous wood beams. The frame can be equipped with plates based on polypropylene or mineral wool, which can significantly increase strength, reduce the penetration of moisture and wind into the home.

Facade decoration

In addition to purely technical features, it is necessary to take into account the appearance of the building being created. Outside, the house, designed as a half-timbered house, is a series of sections that are formed by beams. These beams are tilted at different angles to each other to make it look beautiful. The gaps separating adjacent beams are closed with finishing materials, among which are most often used:

  • wood;
  • artificial stone;
  • natural stone;
  • brick.

Some designers are conducting more daring experiments when the cladding is created from decorative imitation. The outer walls are covered with light plaster combined with wooden beams. The embodiment of such ideas for a trained construction team does not cause difficulties, and their aesthetic advantages are undeniable.

Individual decorators go further, saturating the gaps dividing the load-bearing beams with the latest insulating glass units, with maximum heat retention. If everything is thought out correctly, such structures are quite reliable and stable..

For your information: the most traditional solution, which reproduces the German architecture of the 15th-16th centuries, most fully, is a frame house made of oak or larch. Parts directed vertically, horizontally and diagonally simultaneously fulfill aesthetic and supporting functions. Sheathing the frame, disguising unsightly fastenings, the parts of the sheathing themselves, help the joints in the groove and spike.

In order for the exterior finish to delight you with its grace for a long time and retain its attractiveness, the structures must be treated with preparations based on natural oils. They will help to avoid the harmful effects of ultraviolet radiation and scare away tree-gnawing insects.

When creating a house project, immediately decide whether facade protrusions will be used in it. Initially, such elements were used to protect against precipitation, but in the modern version they are attractive due to the small addition of usable space. Think about whether it is necessary to lay balconies and terraces in the project, what size they will be and where they will be located. The general concept can be aimed at imitating a fabulous “gingerbread house” or a modern villa., take into account the canons of the chosen style. Designers can decorate the exterior of the cottage in the spirit of classic minimalism or German country, for example.

Among the decorative materials, polyurethane is most often used for the facade of a half-timbered dwelling. Beams and beams are made of it, even almost at point-blank range indistinguishable from real wood. Moreover, such structures are not afraid of dampness, temperature changes, and do not arouse interest in insects. During the installation process, liquid nails are used, you need to choose a glue that is intended for outdoor use.

Choosing cement-bonded particle boards for finishing, create a frame of beams with a cross section of at least 5 by 5 cm, otherwise the structure will be unreliable. The surface of DSP (facade paint) and boards should be painted.

Finally, let’s talk about some of the subtleties that allow you to achieve a pleasant appearance. Doors on the front side of the building should be deaf, without a hint of glass. To diversify the look of the plaster, you can cover it with some kind of geometric pattern. The same approach is also appropriate when joining walls with bricks. The processing of angle grinders with a wire brush will help to give the wood an aged look..

Color solutions

Having figured out how the house is being built and its design, now you need to figure out the color scheme. Fachwerk style is optimally combined with discreet pastel colors, including preferred:

  • beige;
  • lactic;
  • sand;
  • peach;
  • light pink;
  • ivory.


All these colors can create an attractive contrast with brown, but its use in small houses should be limited. Accents are formed by terracotta, pistachio and burgundy paints. Any tones that are not found in nature, as well as overly saturated, are categorically unacceptable..

One-story half-timbered houses can be painted according to the principle of reverse contrast, that is, dark walls and light beams, and not vice versa, as usual.

Interior decoration

To decorate rooms correctly, focus on beams in dark colors or painted with natural wood. It is best to cover the walls with the lightest possible plaster or paper wallpaper. Large panoramic windows fully comply with the canons of style, as well as an elegant chandelier hanging in the middle of the room.

Stylistic discrepancy between the interior of a half-timbered house and its appearance is unacceptable. Most experts recommend giving preference to German country, which creates a holistic and harmonious atmosphere with a minimum amount of work. This style is expressed primarily in the use of significant quantities of wood; the main decoration is beams with the effect of visual aging.

Beautiful examples

The elegance and beauty of half-timbered design are simply endless, but it is important to remember both the correct moves and the erroneous actions that are categorically unacceptable..

When decorating a half-timbered house interior, think about furniture products. The key principle of their correct selection is the simplicity of the device and geometric brevity. The original move is the use of furniture that has undergone restoration, it is noticeably cheaper and looks beautiful. Solid wood items are preferred, as decoration of furniture products, forging or carving of an original type is widely used. There should be nothing superfluous, and if you yourself do not know whether a certain cabinet or chair will be used, it is better to remove them..


Proponents of minimalism try to focus on the other side of the half-timbered style, no longer on its tradition, but on a significant amount of light in the room. This approach means that we must strive to glaze as much of the walls as possible, to create spacious and uncluttered rooms. Wooden-framed windows match the half-timbered style better than plastic ones. This design technique makes it possible to glaze the entire perimeter of the house, including the roof (using skylights).

Since we are usually talking about the style of a country house, another tendency inherent in the German approach is appropriate – the organization of an attic in the attic, from which a charming view of the adjoining garden opens. Often, windows are complemented by shutters, boxes with unpretentious plants. If there is a terrace, floral decorations are required on it..

A classic country house looks advantageous with carved beams, especially when complementing this solution with parquet or laminate. Also a good option – tiles imitating the appearance of wood, carpets with a shortened pile, corresponding to the dominant color of the room. When using tiles, they are mainly laid in a checkerboard pattern, in rows or with an offset..

An emphatically rough fireplace made of stone or aged bricks helps to draw attention to the motives of the classics. Brick can also be used in wall decoration, along with facing stones and wooden linings. When decorating various surfaces, keep in mind that their appearance should remain natural. Walls are decorated with cobblestone-like decorative stones or left white, plastered.

The most popular options for decorating a stove in the kitchen is turning it into a kind of stove arch, especially if flowers are used as surrounding accessories. They are hung on walls or placed on shelves..

Of the decorative items, not all forging is suitable, but first of all the one that emphasizes the image of a rural dwelling. For example, a horseshoe or a cart wheel will come in handy for sure. Complement the external effect of forged parts and something wicker. Just don’t forget that rooms should not be cluttered with anything, even visually, the environment should be made airy and free.

So that the latest household appliances do not undermine the stylistic unity of the room, do not harm the integrity of the image, they are removed behind partitions, masked in built-in wardrobes.

The severity of geometry and the absence of bright colored inclusions due to the very small number of decorations are completely compensated for: a cozy and hospitable home is obtained. If erected partitions, then they are by no means should not obscure the view of the frame, because it is he who is responsible for the “spirit” of the half-timbered building.

Given these simple principles, recommendations and advice, it is easy to build and decorate a half-timbered country house both with your own hands and with the help of professionals (controlling them and excluding flaws).

For information on how to decorate the facade of a house under a half-timbered house, see the following video.

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