Roof As An Architectural Element

The primary function of a roof is to protect the home. It is also the most important architectural element, in my opinion.  A roof adds charm like no other feature and charm sells. A simple home with a beautiful, well proportioned roof line can be stunning. The home doesn’t have to be expensive and the roof line does not have to be complex to have a look that draws you in, makes you feel secure, protected, and cozy.



Walk around a neighborhood and take special note of the roofs. Notice how important the proportions are. If the proportion is slightly off, it detracts significantly from the home and it is not an easy fix.



I personally love the look of the villages in Europe and I especially love the roofs. I’m not necessarily a big fan of the strict design codes they have in Europe, especially in Switzerland, but I do have to admit that the Swiss villages are among the prettiest.  The roofs are uniformly beautiful.


 Before Chris and I designed our home in Maine we spent a lot of time walking around observing the architecture in Europe. When we saw a home that we found particularly charming we analyzed it to determine what it was that made it so nice. A pattern evolved. The home did not have to be “fancy”, it could in fact be very simple, but it absolutely had to have the right proportions.


The long low roof lines of some of those farm houses give an impression of cozy protection but inside the homes tend to be too dark. We know, we lived in one. There has to be some compromise. There is no one best style.


One of my favorite books is about the architectural designs of Charles and Henry Greene. These brothers managed to borrow from the best European and Asian designs and come up with something which, I think, symbolizes the American character.



The “big picture” is often lost in the details. That doesn’t have to happen to you. You may have to make compromises but you end up with a beautiful home inside and out. Start with a team consisting of  yourself, a designer, a builder, and the builder’s specialty subcontractors.  If you choose the right people, you will get the best value for your money.


Daggett Builders, Inc  Tel. 207 354 6177

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