The Victorians were very house proud and, for them, the front garden was an important reflection of the interior of a home.
This reconstruction of a Victorian entrance hall in the Geffrye Museum includes many features which will be familiar to people living in north London; including a lovely tiled floor. These floors came in three basic designs: complex with encaustic patterned inserts for a more upmarket look;
black and white (in many variations);
and, cheapest of all, quarry tiles in a range of combinations of black, red or buff.
What has all this to do with a garden path? Well, basically, a typical Victorian (and many Edwardian) house would have a garden path in a similar, if not the same pattern to the one in the hall. All three versions of tiled floors seen above exist as garden paths.
There is no doubt that if you want to do a proper job on restoring your front path – this is the way to go. Notice that the front door step is also tiled. Take a cue from your hallway, if you are lucky enough to still have an original floor. This is a very complex path but the black and white ones will be cheaper.
Especially if you keep the design simple – like the one above.
This one is pretty – and shouldn’t be too labour intensive,
but obviously the more complex the pattern the more expensive the job.
A simple quarry tile path is more commonly found in a Victorian cottage style property. Black and red was a popular combination, especially laid on the diagonal.
Go one step further and add a border?
Or use all three colours in a pattern which takes your fancy.
Whichever pattern you choose it is worth spending that little extra on a beautiful, traditional rope (or barley sugar twist) edging tile. They were made in a limited range of colours:
And for the perfect finishing touch,
add some lovely wrought iron features like a gate and railings.
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