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Siding and Your Home: A Primer – Part III: Siding Shapes and Sizes – It’s a Matter of Style

Siding can come in a variety of styles, sometimes influenced by the kind of material it’s made from. Certain styles go well with certain architectural designs but that doesn’t mean that your choice of siding should be dictated by the kind of home style you have. Instead, use the associations as starting points to help you find siding that perfectly suits your wants and needs.

Horizontal Lap Siding

Also known as bevel or clapboard siding, lap siding is an option available to materials like vinyl, fiber cement and wood. Installed horizontally, with upper rows overlapping with the lower ones, this style of siding is most common in colonial and traditional home styles, such as the Cape Cod, as well as homes that are generally boxy and symmetrical.

Board and Batten

Also known as barn siding, board and batten runs vertically, instead of horizontally like lap siding, and can be made of fiber cement and wood. This siding lends itself well to a more rural- or traditional-looking property, but the lack of a standard width allows for innovation and freedom in expressing the final look of a home.

Shingles and Shakes

Shingles and shakes are siding styles for vinyl, fiber cement, and wood. Functionally identical, shingles are generally machine-sawed, while shakes are, instead, hand-split. Both go well, however, with a Craftsman style of home.

Split Logs

The split logs style of siding is available for wood only, and is responsible for giving cabin-styled homes with their unique charm. Common wood species used for this siding style are cedar, cypress, redwood, and pine, all of which can be stained or painted, depending on preferences. Split log siding, however, is most commonly in its natural state, complemented by a clear-coat sealer which helps protect the wood without hiding the material’s natural beauty.

Fiber Cement Panels

Fiber cement panels come in large sheets, most commonly 4 feet by 8 feet in size, resulting in flat, uniform surfaces with shadow lines where panels meet. While more generally suited to contemporary-style homes, this siding style also works a Prairie-styled houses, when combined with battens placed over the panel joints.

Siding can do a lot for your home and come in a range of options to address whatever you want and need. To help you choose the right siding for your home, don’t hesitate to give your local contractor a call.