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Building A Brick Home: Brick Offers Unique Options With Handcrafted Appeal

(HIT) - Home buyers building a new home will discover that building with brick now offer more ways to create individual looks through textures, colors, shapes and sizes—all with its unique, human touch.

From production homes to custom builds, more home buyers are finding that brick can deliver virtually endless options while maintaining artisan appeal. "Every brick home, regardless of the amount of brick used—from a brick front to four sides brick—is custom handcrafted," said Tom Perry, vice president, marketing, the Brick Industry Association (BIA), Reston, Va. "And more than any other siding material, brick gives homeowners the freedom to add charm and character at virtually any price point," he said.

Although many home buyers are building a brick home because they want an attractive, low-maintenance exterior that adds quality and value (adding only six percent to the cost of the house), they’re also realizing how building a brick home allows them to create an utterly unique look.

Brick Building Textures

Machine-molded antiques and tumbled brick create uneven surfaces that can give new brick homes that old, colonial look. Mottled, irregular textures cast subtle shadows. Dusting delivers a soft, dreamy warmth using a white sand finish over the brick color. Authentic handmades offer the historical appeal of early American villages.

Special Brick Shapes

Semicircular and elliptical brick arches create interest over doorways and windows when building a new brick home … all while softening strong angles. Gothic, tudor and parabolic arches create dramatic entrances. Grand entrances may also be created by building a brick semicircular, elliptical, segmental or multicentered arch for the home.

Bond patterns (how the brick is laid when building a brick home) offer personality by changing the stacking of the brick and exposing different faces of brick. Options include the Running Bond, Stack Bond, Common Bond, English Bond, Flemish Bond and English Cross or Dutch Bond.

Post caps, quoin corners, coping, sills and treads raise and soften edges and corners. Napoleon and Ridge caps and copings (top brick walls) create trimmed curves with rowlocks (brick laid on its face edge to show the end face in the surface); ends and corners. For grand front stairways, curved edges are created with Step Treads used on outside corners, inside corners, headers (brick that overlap vertical sections) and stretchers (brick laid with its greatest dimension horizontal and its face parallel to the wall face). One- and two-piece sloped sills also create interest.

Watertables are projected brick sections that add dimension and rich shadows to homes built with brick, reducing water penetration and creating elegant jambs around brick door and window openings. Watertables used on outside corners, inside corners, headers and stretchers include Sloped, Ogee, Cove and Bullnose. Radial watertables use brick with a curved edge on their short or long sides. Custom shapes are more economical if created within a standard brick dimension. Options include internal, external, lipped brick and corner brick.

Custom shapes using standard shaped brick are uniquely crafted for a specific use and can add unparalleled detail or sophisticated expression to any home. Exterior and interior trends in building a brick home include filled-in "faux" windows on new homes, inlaid brick sculpture on fireplaces and chimney walls, entrance hall floors, wine cellars, family room floors, bedrooms, kitchen walls and floors, patios, walks and drives.

Brick building color trends include classic reds; flashing (produces specific color tones); lighter beiges and warm neutrals; earth tones; monochromatic; Mediterranean looks created by matching brick and mortar colors; and rich blends that give straight-edge brick a boost.

Queen-size, king-size and oversize simulated tumbled brick produce early American warmth. Matching shapes and arches top off the look.

For more information on building a brick home, contact your local brick distributor or visit for a list of distributors in your state and to order BIA publications: "Home Buyers’ Guide to Brick"; "The Beauty of Brick"; "Brick Shapes Guide"; "Brick Sculpture" (video); "Fireplaces & Chimneys"; "Seven Easy Steps to Installing Your Own Walkway"; "Driveway or Patio Without Mortar or Concrete"; "16 Outdoor Projects; and Warm Beauty".

Courtesy: Home Improvement News and Information Center

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