What Are The Different Types of Conservatories?

What Are The Different Types of Conservatories

In this post, In this article, Paul Langley from Transforming Conservatories, a Petts Wood Conservatories and Orangeries builder and conservatory roof replacement firm, describes the differences that make a Georgian, Victorian and Edwardian conservatory unique, and helps you to decide which type is best for your home.

Each conservatory has unique attributes, whether architecture, form, decor or simply the view from its windows. But no matter what the details are, design is a crucial element that can make or break a conservatory’s overall appearance and cohesiveness to the rest of the home. There are three very popular design styles for conservatories; Georgian, Victorian and Edwardian. Each style has its artistic feel and relates to a particular period in British history.

Georgian Conservatories

The Georgian style developed during the period from 1760 to 1820 when Britain was under the rule of King George III, thus the name Georgian. The style is classic, with clean and straight lines, large sashes on the windows and often a lot of stucco. They were mainly designed for growing plants and fruits as the wealthy liked to have tropical fruits year-round. Many Georgian-style conservatories also have glass ceilings. They’re still popular and go with many home styles, but traditional period architecture works best with Georgian conservatories.

Victorian Conservatories

The Victorian style developed during the period between 1837 and 1901 while Queen Victoria was in reign, again another obvious clue to where the name came from. This was a particularly prosperous time, and a lot of attention was paid to science and the arts. With a focus on art, many architectural elements were derived from past styles and incorporated intricate details, romantic touches, sweeping arches and graceful buttresses. Advancements were made in metalwork and glazing during this time, so conservatories became immensely popular and featured significant amounts of metal and glass. Look for a running roof ridge and a bell-shaped section, as these were dead giveaways to the Victorian style.

Edwardian conservatories

Guess who was in reign when the Edwardian style came into the fore? Yes it was during the reign of King Edward VII from 1901 until 1910. His was a short reign, but it did leave quite an impression. The Edwardians took heed of the previous Victorians but refined the almost manic need for details at every turn. The shape became more rectangular, and there typically was a peak at the top. But the Edwardian style borrowed very heavily from the Victorians, and often the two types seem to meld.

After the Edwardian era, conservatories began to lose appeal and seem frivolous as the world was thrown into World War I. Many older sunrooms fell into disrepair or were demolished and it wasn’t until recently that they again found favour with homeowners.

Conservatories, orangeries and solariums may increase in popularity and become an essential feature to the modern home as homeowners look to be greener and grow more plants inside their homes. Furthermore, Covid-19 and lockdowns have affected how people see their homes, as they now appreciate having an outdoor space within the home to be in the fresh air and bring them closer to nature.


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