If you have a classic or traditionally-styled home, it may have featured gingerbread trim or siding at one point in time. America’s love of gingerbread siding and exteriors dates back to the 1830s and 40s. It was at this time that the economy was doing well, money was not a concern for homeowners, and every homeowner wanted their home to be unique from their neighbors.
Builders looked to Europe for inspiration and decided to try recreating some of the masonry work seen there, in the wood. They layered and cut different pieces of wood intro intricate and elaborate designs, creating the gingerbread look we know today.
Gingerbread may not be quite as fussy as it once was, but many people still choose to use it to help highlight some of the features of their homes today. And while traditional gingerbread was made of wood, it was also very hard to maintain; the many pieces requiring frequent scraping, sanding and repainting to look their best. That’s why many homeowners who want the look of gingerbread are now turning to alternative materials such as fiber cement.
Fiber cement irregular shingles, half-round shingles, and octagonal shingles can all be used to help create the gingerbread look. But because fiber cement is more durable, it won’t have the same level of maintenance that older gingerbread did.
Gingerbread Siding Design Ideas
If you’re considering getting the gingerbread look for your home, check out these 7 homes showing how fiber cement can be used to help give you the style you’re after.
1. Accent Areas
Paired with deep, cantilevered eaves, fiber cement irregular shakes can be used to help bring some gingerbread accents to small areas of the home. While the rest of the structure may feature lap siding, these shakes help the window areas stand out, highlighting the unique architecture of the building.
2. Chateau Style
One of the benefits of fiber cement is it is available with a wood stain color, giving you the ability to pair the material with real wood. This lets you create a more authentic gingerbread appearance for your home. This home features fiber cement lap and shingle siding, along with wood cantilevers and wood accents around the windows to help finalize the gingerbread look.
3. Color and Texture
For large homes, sometimes the best way to help the architecture really stand out is to continuously change the color and texture of the exterior. This home does that beautifully by pairing lap siding in a lighter shade with both irregular shakes and half-round shingles on the accent areas. Those areas really pop and help keep the exterior from looking bland. The result is a stately home with a lot of interest and detail.
4. Nature Match
The gingerbread look isn’t just reserved for Victorian or classic styled homes; sometimes it’s also the perfect way to complement your surroundings as well. This home features shingle siding on the exterior as a way to add texture that will match and complement the fieldstone chimney and the landscaping. The result is an attractive home that blends into its surroundings beautifully.
5. Tone on Tone
If you want to add texture in a subtle way, you can use half-round shingles in the same color as the rest of the siding. This home shows off its upper architecture and details in the same sunny yellow as the lap siding on the lower half.
The effect isn’t bold, but it still allows the details in the home to get the attention that they deserve. This is a great way to add a little gingerbread to homes that might not be able to pull off the full Victorian color palette that some older homes may boast.
6. Textural Detail
This home has a lot going on with the architecture, style, and placement of the different features. It also has fieldstone accents on the skirting and on one section, as well as architectural panels on another section. It needed something that could pull all of this together, and the irregular shingles are the perfect way to do that, creating a gingerbread look that completes the exterior.
7. Seaside Elegance
Shingle siding is beautiful, yet understated when it covers the entire home. With the many windows and porches that this building features to capture the view, the siding needs to be interesting.
That’s why the shingles are such a perfect choice; they add texture and dimension but don’t try to grab the eye in a way that would pull it away from its surroundings. And with fiber cement siding it is resisting the salt in the sea air, and this home will be able to retain its good looks for longer.
Dress Up Your Home
Whether you want to add a little interest or a lot, using fiber cement shingles can help your home will help you achieve the decorative look you’re after. Gingerbread may not be as fussy and intricate as it once was, but it’s still a popular addition to many homes. Consider using some fiber cement shingles from Allura to dress up your home, and capture these beautiful looks for yourself.