Designing Wood Garage Doors for Craftsman Style Homes

May 12, 2024

Craftsman style homes are known for their timeless appeal and simple design. As a follow up to the complex designs of Victorian era architecture, these home designs have had a significant presence in American architectural history. These types of homes are a dime a dozen in some parts of the U.S., and at CAMBEK we’ve helped design and build custom wood garage doors that complement them. 

Understanding the ins-and-outs of this architectural style will help you create garage doors that not only seamlessly blend in with the home but make it one of the best looking in the neighborhood as well. 

The History of Craftsman Style Homes

The Craftsman style emerged in the late 19th and early 20th centuries as part of the Arts and Crafts movement, which began in Britain as a reaction against industrialization and mass production. This movement emphasized hand-crafted quality, natural materials, and simple yet elegant design. 

In the United States, the Craftsman style was popularized by the Greene brothers, Charles and Henry, who designed many iconic homes in California. The style spread across the country, becoming especially popular in the Midwest and on the West Coast. Craftsman homes are characterized by their attention to detail, use of natural materials, and integration with the surrounding landscape, making them a beloved choice for homeowners who appreciate quality and craftsmanship. 

The Major Design and Aesthetic Features of Craftsman Style Homes

Craftsman style homes are known for their: 

  • Low-Pitched Roofs: Craftsman homes typically feature low-pitched, gabled roofs with wide, overhanging eaves and exposed rafters. 
  • Large Front Porches: these homes often have spacious front porches supported by thick, tapered columns, creating a welcoming entrance. 
  • Handcrafted Stone or Woodwork: many of these homes use natural materials like wood and stone, with a focus on the quality of craftsmanship. The exterior often combines different materials such as wood, stone, and brick, creating a textured and layered appearance. 
  • Symmetry and Simplicity: Craftsman homes emphasize balanced proportions and simple, clean lines. 

How to Design the Right Wood Garage Door for a Craftsman Style Home

Designing a garage door for a Craftsman style home begins close attention to the details that define. Carefully design the features of your garage door to echo the simplicity of the design. Focus on these garage door features. 

Panel Designs

  • Traditional Panels: use recessed or raised panels to add depth and interest. Stick to designs that reflect the simplicity and handcrafted nature of Craftsman style. 
  • Carriage House Style: Carriage doors were common on early Craftsman homes, so use a carriage house design that mimics the appearance of these old-fashioned. These doors typically feature crossbucks or diagonal bracing. 

Window Placement and Styles

  • Top Row Windows: placing windows in the top row of the garage door can add elegance and natural light. 
  • Divided Lites: use small, divided lites or true divided lite windows to reflect the emphasis on intricate details in traditional Craftsman style homes. 

Garage Door Hardware Options

  • Decorative Hardware: add period-appropriate hardware such as wrought iron handles and hinges. These elements can be both functional and decorative. 
  • Accents: consider including additional hardware accents like clavos (decorative nail heads) to enhance the handcrafted look. 

Color and Finish Options

  • Stains and Natural Finishes: choose natural wood stains that highlight the grain and texture of the wood. Earthy tones and finishes that complement the natural materials of the home are ideal. 
  • Painted Finishes: if a painted finish is preferred, select colors that match or complement the home’s exterior palette. 

Step-Up Your Design with these Additional Features that Match Craftsman Style Homes

  • Natural Lighting: incorporate windows with stained glass or artisan details to enhance the handcrafted look. 
  • Varying Textures: Use a mix of textured panels or different types of glass to add more visual interest to your design. 

Always remember to ensure that the garage door design is consistent with the other architectural elements of the home, such as the front door, window trims, and porch details! 

Focus on The Quality of the Materials

Craftsman style homes are known for the quality and their craftsmanship! Choose high-quality materials and finishes to ensure the garage door not only looks great but also stands the test of time. Most importantly, work with a garage door manufacturer who can truly bring your design to life! 


Looking to create a beautiful door for a Craftsman style home? We can help! Get in touch with CAMBEK today for a free design consultation!

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