Architectural Details

This is a description of the architectural details of the typical Victorian or Edwardian drawing room; the plaster, woodwork including floor, skirting, dado, and doors, and the fireplace.

The drawing room was usually the largest and grandest room. Thus at each period the room exhibited the most fashionable and decorative features.

The ceiling rose came and went during the 19th century. Matching ceiling mouldings were most elaborately carved during the Gothic period. With the Queen Anne revival the ceiling rose disappeared in exchange for more elaborate plaster ceilings once again, particularly as manufacturing processes had reduced the cost of 'kits of parts' of cornices and mouldings. Later and into the Edwardian era, less complex applied decorations were added to the ceiling, usually in the corners and around the central light fitting.

The dado was used in the mid and late Victorian periods. By 1900 the dado was out of fashion for all but the hall, stairs and landing, and the picture rail was lower, perhaps on a level with the top of the doorway.

The skirting was of a complex moulding.

The floor was almost always made of pine boards, except in the best houses where hardwoods such as oak and mahogany were used.

The fireplace was the key feature of the room. In the drawing room it was opulent but in lighter colours than in the dining room.