Neoclassical Style. Explore creative design ideas, tips and inspirations for this classic architectural design style.          

When the ruins of Pompeii and Herculaneum were excavated in the eighteenth century, new information about the ancient world sparked a revolution in architecture and interior design. In various forms -- Georgian architecture in Britain, the Federal and Greek Revival house styles in America, the Napoleonic Empire Style which dotted Paris with triumphal arches -- Neoclassicism dominated Western architecture for 100 years. Emphasizing proportion and grace, embellished with Classical detail, the Neoclassical style remains influential in the design of public buildings and modern Traditional homes.

Neoclassical architecture ranges from the rectilinear Georgian style to the more graceful, curvilinear mode devised by the Scottish designer Robert Adam and adopted in America in the form of Federal style. Symmetry, arched Palladian windows, a fanlight over the centered front door, dentil molding below the cornice, and decorative columns or pilasters are the basic elements of this architectural style. Circular windows, oval rooms, and decorative arches also characterize the Adam and Federal styles.

Neoclassical interior design selects elements from Greek and Roman antiquity to create balance and refinement. Colors are pale and calming: cream, stone, gray, pale blue. Floors are light pine, stone, or marble, covered with Persian or floral woven carpets. One can also use stronger color, sparingly: black and terra cotta for a Greek feel, or deep red and gold for an imperial, Roman look. Wallpaper in geometric, floral or Classical designs is also appropriate.

Classical detail can appear anywhere you like. Columns or pilasters flank the fireplace. Geometric marble or inlaid wood graces the entryway floor. Murals or wallpaper depicting mythological scenes or ancient architecture create drama in the dining room. Crown molding is important, and can feature a dentil pattern, swags, garlands, egg and dart shapes.

Neoclassical Style plaster ornament

Item CP616

Neoclassical Style architectural details and ornamentation!

Ceiling medallions, cornices and moldings. Authentic Period and Historic Home architectural ornamentation. All crafted in genuine plaster. For commercial and residential environments.

more ornamental plaster medallions.

Blending Traditional and Contemporary Design
Antique glaze paint finish

Stucco Veneziano - Venetian Plaster!

Inspired by the ornate plaster-work of Renaissance Italy, decorative plaster has a millennial history, with origins dating back to the Rome of the Caesars and in the art of Ancient Greece.

It was Andrea Palladio, a famous Italian architect, who in the XVI century re-discovered it through his studies and re-proposed it in the splendid Venetian villas that are still to this day the distinguishing mark of his career. Stucco Veneziano is an aesthetic solution that step by step, conquered Venice and Lombardy, then Italy, and finally entire Europe in the XVII century. Today, venetian plaster Stucco Veneziano restores the splendor of a classic and prestigious finish.


Antiquing Video Tutorial

Turn ordinary objects into heirlooms! Creating the 'Classic Antique' glaze finish for objects, furniture, walls and more. This detailed step-by-step tutorial shows how to mix the right colors to create the perfect antiquing solution for any object, furniture, picture frame and more.

Elements of Neoclassical Style

Today, the ultra-modern look still adheres to the original Bauhaus ideal of functionalism, but its austere building blocks can be leavened with earthy or colorful accents. Forms are simple and modular, ornament minimal but not prohibited. As with the original Bauhaus style, furnishings should be attractive, industrially produced, and high-quality.

Feature tutorial.

The Parchment colorwash. Creating the impression of aged walls, the Parchment finish evokes a feeling of history and old world charm. The color density varies over the finished surface and creates appearances of lightly mottled parchment. A soft and airy finish, the Parchment glaze is an ideal way to create mood and character in any room. I’ve found it to be an ideal solution for finishing irregular or textured wall surfaces.

parchment color wash paint finish

Architectural features:

The column is the most recognizable element of Neoclassical design. The Doric column, the oldest and plainest Greek style, found on the Parthenon, has fluted sides and a smooth, rounded capital. The Ionic column has scroll-shaped ornaments at the top, and the Corinthian column's capital is decorated with olive, laurel or acanthus leaves. Early nineteenth-century American houses, whether Federal, Greek Revival, or Southern Colonial, frequently feature columned entryways or front porches. In more modern homes, columns can transform any room into a Greek temple: the dining room, the entry hall, the master bath.


Neoclassical furniture is typically light, graceful and simple: Chippendale, Adam, Sheraton and Hepplewhite are the Traditional choices. Sheraton's lyre back chair and Hepplewhite's shield back chair are two fine examples of Neoclassical style. Accessories from the eighteenth or nineteenth-century -- Silver tea services, Wedgwood china, candlesticks, chinoiserie, fireplace tools and screens -- should be used alongside Greek and Roman accents like urns, statuary, and designs from ancient pottery.

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