Fencing is meant to serve a purpose. It keeps a line of separation between a person’s property and the outside world. The fence that you choose also reflects the personality of the home. Each fence design should fit in with the type of home it surrounds. This includes the base of the fence, whether it’s aluminium or steel and if it will have vertical or horizontal slats. The top of the pickets make the most impact so it’s essential to know the different styles before making a choice.
According to Robert Viau from Georgia College, from the early eighteenth century, the outside of the home was considered to be an extension of the inside of the home. A lot of planning went into the garden and elaborate designs were created by the architects who designed the home. This is when shrubs and other landscaping elements were used as fencing.
Nautical and Slats
The Nautical or slats design is meant to provide privacy as well as a line marking the property. This type of design can be used around pool areas too. It’s perfect for property in a busy neighbourhood or that is extremely close to the neighbouring property. It provides the homeowner with a screen against the outside world. It can be erected to create an oasis of calm in the homeowner’s own backyard.
Each of the designs in this category have a closed top. They have horizontal lines topping the vertical pickets. The designs can be plain like the Caulfield, Radisson and Fortview with no scrollwork or decorative pieces at the top, or the horizontal tops can have intricate scrollwork and curlicues like the Valencia, Hastings or Montana style. It would depend on the homeowner’s design aesthetic as well as the style of the home.
The vertical pickets can be topped with decorative caps. Each of these designs has its own style and appeal. The Chantilly, Classique and Gothic have some of the most traditional ornamental designs seen on these types of fences. The Regency and Bishop have scrolled caps on the top of the vertical pickets too. Each of these designs is similar because they aren’t topped with simple points. The tops are shaped like flowers, crowns or other flared curvy designs.
The Guardian, Double Top Rail and Sentinal have pointed tops shaped like arrow or spear points. The design is simple yet makes an impact. It’s a bit traditional, but will look beautiful with many different home designs, and it’s the perfect complement to many landscape decisions. For those homeowners who don’t want the fence to stand out, but want it to blend into the background, the pointed tops are a great choice.
There are two designs that are not straight at the top. The Curved Top curves as its name suggests. It’s bowed at the top, so it curves upward. The pickets are different heights to create this effect. Each picket steps down from the middle. These edge pickets are lowered to create the curve. In the Acorn design, the middle is shorter than the ends to create an upward curve at the edges. Each design creates a beautiful curve whether it’s curved upward or downward.
It’s important to consider the design of the home and what you hope to accomplish with the fencing before making your choice. If the desire for privacy overrides the concern for anything else, a horizontal fence would be a wise choice. Fencing that surrounds a pool would have different needs than a fence that surrounds the property. The homeowner has to make lots of decisions based on personal preference.
Matthew Suter is Managing Director of Fencemakers, a leading provider of Gates and Fencing in Perth, WA. Find Matthew on Google+.