Choosing the Perfect Fence for Your Property - Fence Types and Styles Choosing the Perfect Fence for Your Property - Fence Types and Styles

Types and functions of fences:

Privacy. These fences are designed with one thing in mind: to keep your space to yourself. Whether used to protect against intrusion, to enclose a pool, or to block out the surrounding neighborhood, a privacy fence can be very effective in keeping the world at bay. It is generally defined by its stature, board width, and board spacing, with the average height being 6 feet, the average board width being 4 inches, and the average spacing being less than an eighth of an inch. Semi-privacy fencing is less stringent, allowing for wider spaces between boards and more open, decorative fence tops. Consult local building codes for limits on privacy fences. Some areas regulate how tall a fence may be and where it may be placed.

Farm. Also known as ranch fencing, farm fencing comes in a variety of configurations. From the more open two, three, or four railing styles to the tighter and more private field fencing, farm fencing can be used to corral large animals or simply to define the edge of a property. This type of fencing is very versatile, allowing the use of rough hewn logs or ultra smooth finished lumber, depending upon the desired look and feel.

Cottage. Known best for the white picket fence, cottage fencing has occupied the dreams of many hopeful home owners throughout the years. Its crisp, clean lines and simply-stated elegance makes consideration of cottage fencing a must for any home owner. Not only is cottage fencing a beautiful addition to the landscape, it also offers tremendous functionality for protecting your property. No list of fencing options would be complete without the cottage fence.

Decorative. Considered the most elaborate of all fence types, decorative fencing is designed primarily for its visual appeal. Regardless of its building material, a decorative fence can add visual splendor to even the most monotonous yard, drawing the compliments of every passer-by. Consider the openness of a lattice fence or the intricacy of a basket weave style. Whatever decoration or design you choose, be prepared to be noticed.

Slat. This type of fence is a step between the picket fence and the privacy fence. Slat fences are generally 3 to 4 feet in height, with slightly broader boards than the general picket fence. Don't let the name fool you, however. Slat fences can be very beautiful and very elaborate, with fancy cuts and geometric designs built into the building of the fence.

Popular styles of fences:

Gothic. Deriving its style from the architecture of the Middle Ages between the twelfth and sixteenth centuries, Gothic form is a favorite in fence styles. The term "Gothic" in fence language refers to the pointed tops of the fence, whether found in the individual pickets of a fence or in the finials of a wrought iron fence.

French Gothic. Slightly more flamboyant in its style than Gothic, French Gothic adds a bit of flair to any fence with the addition of curves and flourettes.

Scalloped. Used primarily in wood, composite, and vinyl fencing, scallops add beauty and grace to the clean lines of a fence. Whether conventional or reverse, scalloped edging steps away from the potential monotony of straight lines and symmetry that some fences can have.

Flat. Do not let the name fool you. Flat is not synonymous with boring. It refers primarily to the horizontal laying of the boards used in making the fence. While other styles use vertical placement of fence pieces, flat styles orient the pieces so that the top line of the fence is flat. Fences of this style can acquire great form and grace by incorporating multiple levels throughout the width of the fence, creating a step effect that can be pleasing to the eye while still offering the functionality that homeowners crave.

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