Saturday, January 23, 2010

Glazed headers

Yesterday's brick-battering got me thinking. Every notice how so much of modern brickwork is butt-ugly? Gotta figure the contractors are getting the cheapest shit they can, maybe from their cousin Vinnie or something. Anyway, you must travel back in time to see admirable brickwork. Roman brick, longer and narrow than standard, graces some late 19th and early 20 century buildings here in NYC, and is particularly appealing.

This picture, however, is from Philadelphia, where we were weekending recently. Philly's a stoopless town, being un-Dutched, but it certainly has some fine brickwork in the Society Hill neighborhood. This is a local style called Flemish bond. It alternates long and short ends, and is thought to have been picked up by Englishmen living in Holland during Cromwell's reign. This is a decorative variation with "glazed headers" creating a checkerboard pattern. If you know me and donuts, I like anything glazed.

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