Top 50 Best Brick And Stone Exterior Ideas – Cladding Designs
Nothing gives the impression of a resplendent abode quite like brick and stone.
Used for centuries in only the finest strongholds and homes, the legacy of brick and stone continues to this day.
With the quality and integrity of the modern home waning more and more in the name of cost and convenience, now is the perfect time to honor your home like nobility.
The beauty of brick and stone design work lies within its versatility; whether you prefer a handsome Tudor façade or edgy geometric effect, there is no doubt a motif for every domicile. Rustic or refined, brick and mortar masonry defies any one specific era, blending the old world with the new to redefine the idyllic 21st Century home. And with a swirling plethora of colors from which to select, such as warm earth tones and conversely cool grays, you can rest assured that your house will flawlessly complement its surroundings. And thanks to their natural cooling abilities, your brick and stone home will remain cool as a proverbial cucumber during the more heat-saturated seasons.
There are many perspectives on what truly makes a house a home. And while a stunning new exterior may not speak solely of those who dwell within, it will no doubt cast them in a superior light.
Your home deserves to look as impeccable as its inhabitants, and these top 50 best brick and stone exterior ideas are classic choices in a nouveau era.
The basic Craftsman bungalow is one of the most easily-identifiable home designs today. The first Craftsman or Arts-and-Crafts style homes were erected in America around the turn of the 20th century. With their simplicity of style, they were seen as a rebellion against the ornate formality of the Victorian homes that ruled at the time.
One classic feature that distinguishes the Craftsman is its front porch columns. These supports generally have a wide stone or brick base topped with a four-sided beam that tapers as it nears the roof.
Craftsman homes may use a combination of stone and brick cladding or brick and wood siding. They tend to be painted in muted browns, greens, or earthy golden shades that coordinate well with natural stone or brick. However, their simple design can also make them a good canvas to carry brighter colors.
Craftsman bungalows often feature a central dormer with a low profile. Its front and sides can be a good place to repeat the brick or stone used on the stylized porch columns. Brick or stone paths and steps provide an impressive entrance path into your classic Craftsman abode.
When Tudor design mentioned, it immediately brings to mind life in 16th century England. Homes designed in the Tudor style today are modern takes on architectural features common in the late Medieval era. They can include a mixture of brick and stone cladding, decorative half-timbering, and tall, leaded-glass windows beneath a steep roofline. Some Tudor homes have a castle-like appearance with flattened, pointed arches on doorways and windows, and multiple, exaggerated chimney stacks.
A classic Tudor color palette will include warm grays, a range of brown tones and cream or white accents. However, modern Tutor homes can feature wooden shutters and beams painted in soft shades of earthy sage green or other non-traditional colors. It is common to see an arched wooden doorway framed in stones of varying sizes serving as the focal point of a brick Tudor home. A modern Tudor revival home may feature a flagstone path and steps leading up to a wide Gothic limestone arch framing the front door.
Cottage-style houses became popular in the United States during the 1920s and 1930s. Soldiers returned from WWI wanted to replicate the cozy cottages they saw scattered throughout the English and French countryside. A cottage’s charming simplicity of design helps showcase any type of stone or brick cladding. It’s common to see small cottages with painted or bare bricks along the bottom third of their exterior walls, with shake shingles or plank siding applied to the sections above.
Stone cottages are reminiscent of the English countryside and one dwelling may be clad with a combination of stone types and sizes. Limestone, sandstone, and river stone were often used to build British cottages. Traditionally, builders would use whichever stone was most readily available in the area. Although natural stone can be an expensive way to finish exterior walls today, the wide availability of manufactured stone panels can make it easy to replicate the appearance of natural stone while sticking to a budget.
Roughcast is a fine stone finish seen more frequently in the UK than in the US. It involves mixing gravel or pebbles with cement and spreading the mixture on timber-framed exterior walls. Sometimes small glass fragments are mixed in to add a dash of color. Pebbledash is a similar process, but instead of mixing the pebbles into the cement, they are applied on top of a layer of plain plaster.
4. Cape Cod
This architectural style was born in New England and has become a popular home design in neighborhoods throughout the United States. Cape-style homes are generally modest in size with a low horizontal profile. Traditionally, they have steep roofs and a one-story or one-and-a-half-story floor plan.
One of the key features of most Cape Cods is the inclusion of dormers on the second floor. These windowed projections add ventilation, headroom, and living space to the attic area. Dormers also add visual height to a home and a great deal of curbside appeal. The small exterior surface of a dormer can be a good place to add manufactured brick or stone panels for architectural interest.
While original Cape Cods were generally covered in wood and shingled siding, modern homes built with a nod to New England can be found with any combination of wood, brick, and stone exteriors. To modernize an older brick Cape Cod, consider painting the brick and adding the details mentioned in the following home makeover video:
Colonial-style homes are a common feature in many American neighborhoods. These symmetrical homes have a square or rectangular shape and often have brick or wood siding. On a colonial home, the door is usually located in the center of the house with an equal number of windows on each side of the door. They are usually two or three stories tall, and upper-level windows are aligned with the windows on the lower level.
Central or end chimneys are another feature of colonial design and are a great place to apply contrasting brick or stone cladding. German-style colonial homes have a rustic appearance due to their natural stone walls and small stone eclipse arches over the windows. Neo-Colonial homes came on the American scene during the 21st century and often feature brick siding halfway up the lower level and wood siding on the rest of the home.
This popular single-story home design dates back to the 1930s and enjoyed an architectural revival during the 1950s and 1960s. Most metropolitan areas in America still boast dozens of neighborhoods filled with the standard 3-bedroom, 2-bath brick ranches built during this housing boom. These retro homes are enjoying another burst of popularity as millennials flock to the clean lines and less-is-more simplicity of midcentury design.
Ranches built after the 1960s are likely to be clad in wood or composite siding, or they might combine one of these with brick or stone accents. Stone and brick are common exterior chimney finishes on ranch homes that have fireplaces. Brick pavers and planters can be found on many ranch home porches, which may also be held up with brick or stone-clad columns. Open carports were popular on older ranch homes and many feature brick lattice walls in a variety of patterns.
Ranch-style homes being built today often mix several design elements and exterior finishes. While brick remains a popular choice for these single-story dwellings, it is likely to be applied in a style reflecting Tudor, Mediterranean, or cottage design elements.
7. French Country
If you are a fan of masonry exteriors, a French country home will allow you to showcase all your favorite textures and finishes. Most French country homes feature a combination of brick, stone, and stucco surfaces in complementary colors. All the earthy colors found in natural stone feature heavily in French country design, including warm caramel, ivory white, dove gray, and every shade of brown.
This type of European architecture is equally appealing on large and stately manors, family farmhouses, and cozy cottages. While it may seem counterintuitive to mix and match a variety of surfaces, this truly is the hallmark of French country design. Original French country homes were built to last for generations and were created from the materials easiest to acquire. Therefore, this design scheme is often accented with large, dark beams holding up porches and wooden flowerboxes positioned under windows. Wrought-iron balcony railings and painted shutters can also be used to add interest to French country masonry surfaces.
Victorian homes have a distinctive, over-the-top reputation that suits the era from which the design originated. There is usually little symmetry in Victorian design and any number of colors and textures can be used on its exterior. These multi-storied homes may feature a red brick foundation, wood siding on the main floor, and fish-scale shingles covering the second story.
These homes often include multiple brick or stone chimneys which are great structures to renovate with your favorite type of masonry cladding. Of course, if your Victorian home is on a historic registry, you should check the registry’s rules for renovation before making any significant changes.
When building a modern home with Victorian flair, consider turrets, bay windows, balconies, and wide, wrap-around porches as areas where you can incorporate stone or brick into your design.
Although a common hallmark of Mediterranean architecture is a stucco or adobe exterior, most Spanish or Italian style homes include some type of stone or brick surfaces. Popular in California and the southwestern United States, Mediterranean structures are frequently built around a central courtyard and fountain. This garden area is incorporated into the living space as many rooms open to the courtyard.
Arched windows and doorways can be trimmed with pale limestone panels that contrast nicely against the warm and earthy Mediterranean color palette. Stately Mediterranean manors often feature expansive front porches defined by stone columns and arched openings.
Tuscan-inspired design may center a wide wall of irregularly-hewn stone blocks between two smooth stucco walls. Terra cotta roof tiles are one of the defining features of Mediterranean design and pair well with the stone cladding techniques popular in the region.
Contemporary or modern homes can project a dramatic appearance despite the overall simplicity of their design. With mostly flat-face exteriors and low-pitched or flat rooflines, these homes need the visual interest that natural stone can bring to a structure. Smooth limestone or slate panels can be found in every neutral shade, from pale white to deep onyx, and arranged to highlight simple contemporary angles and planes.
Composite stone panels can provide the illusion of texture while retaining a smooth finish critical to many modern home designs. Contemporary homes usually include floor-to-ceiling glass walls that substitute for traditional paneled windows. These tend to look best when surrounded by equally smooth surfaces.
Sometimes a bit of texture is appreciated even in modern design. Hexagonal or square bricks on a boxy bump-out can be just the touch that makes a basic contemporary exterior stand out from the rest.
Brick and Stone Exterior FAQs
How long does stone siding last?
A big advantage of stone siding is its longevity. No matter which type of stone you choose, you can expect it to remain beautiful for decades. In fact, natural stone exteriors can last for a century or more if maintained and repaired as needed.
If you choose faux-stone siding or manufactured stones, be sure to get a copy of the warranty. It will outline how long the manufacturer will guarantee the quality of their product when used under normal conditions. In general, manufactured stone surfaces are guaranteed anywhere from 20 to 75 years.
What type of maintenance is required for brick or stone exteriors?
Like any other type of exterior finish, brick and stone surfaces will need occasional washing. Use a soft bristle brush, water, and a cleaning product made specifically for cleaning masonry. If you have manufactured stone siding, follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for cleaning. While pressure washers are a popular tool for cleaning home exteriors, make sure it is safe to use this method on your particular finish.
Some stone surfaces may require the application of a sealer. If so, this may need to be reapplied periodically. In addition, brick and stone surfaces are vulnerable to mortar weathering and decay. Over time, this process causes gaps in the joints between bricks or stones. These voids allow water to penetrate the surface and can cause serious structural damage.
Repointing is the process of removing old mortar and filling the gaps with new mortar. Contact a stonemason to obtain repointing services, or if you’re feeling adventurous, check out this video for tips on DIY masonry repointing:
Top 29 Best Watches Under $500 For Men
With cellphones so ubiquitous, your watch choice can be less about telling time and more about personal style. However, a watch is not ‘just’ a watch. For example, the vast majority are made for right-handed people, but a select few cater to the lefties among us. There is a wide range in functionality and size.
The wristwatch is also one of the few socially acceptable accessories for men, so why not have a small selection? If you’re not cashing a CEO’s paycheck just yet, here are the top 28 most handsome watches for men that retail for under $500.
Got a bigger budget? Then check out our guide to the best men’s watches under $1000 instead.
Top 29 Best Watches Under $500 For Men
1. Tommy Hilfiger Stainless Steel Men’s Watch
If you like the feel of a pliable, non-metal band but aren’t comfortable with genuine leather, this watch comes equipped with a handsome synthetic band. At 46mm in diameter, this watch is perfect for men of smaller stature, as it will not overpower your hand or make it look like you’re wearing your father’s watch. With bold Arabic numerals, a stainless steel case, and classic styling, this watch is an outstanding choice for an everyday watch and the man on a budget.
2. Nordgreen Pioneer – Black Dial
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Not everyone has an endless amount of cash to drop on a luxury timepiece. If you’re money-conscious but want something high-end, then why not consider the Nordgreen Pioneer.
An inspired take on a classic Chronograph, Nordgreen celebrates the Danish with what they call a timepiece “that captures the sustainable future.” Available in various dial colors from blue, black, and white. There’s even the choice of three case colors – gunmetal, silver, and rose gold. A perfect addition to the collection of any watch enthusiast.
3. Fossil Grant Brown Leather WatchCheck Price
This lovely offering by Fossil features slim Roman numeral hour markers and delicate cut-out hands. The casing is stainless steel and is water-resistant to 165 feet, making it a great dive watch. The band is made of supple, soft calfskin leather and uses a buckle closure.
Of course, this timepiece also comes with the generous 11-year warranty and it’s own fun tin. This watch oozes class and is great for nearly every occasion in your life.
4. Citizen Sport Stainless Steel Men’s Watch With Brown Leather Band
If you don’t want to deal with changing out a battery in a digital watch, this watch is powered by either natural or indoor lighting. The mineral crystal face and stainless steel case make this watch water-resistant to 330 feet, making it a great choice for swimmers and snorkelers.
Handsome and utilitarian, this is a great watch for everyday wear. It’s one of the best watches for men who are always on the go.
5. Fossil Men’s Machine Chronograph Silicone Watch
This watch was designed with the active man in mind. The knurled silicone band stands up to sweat and oils without issue, and the timepiece itself is water-resistant to 165 feet.
The patterned bezel and quality craftsmanship of the black dial is excellent, as is to be expected from a Fossil watch. It even comes in the iconic and collectible tin!
6. Citizen Men’s Eco-Drive Watch
This men’s watch features Japanese quartz movement that charges itself indoors or out when exposed to light, making it a great choice for those who don’t want to change out the battery too often. The stitched canvas strap is soft against your skin and will wick away moisture, while the mineral crystal face stands up to the rigors of your everyday life.
Water-resistant to 330 feet, this dive watch is a classic and simple design you’ll be proud of for years to come.
7. Invicta Pro Diver Chronograph Men’s Watch
Another gorgeous offering by Invicta, this watch features a bold design with a slightly nautical feel to it. It will look at home whether you’re wearing a business suit or are going for a dive of less than 660 feet. This piece is also covered by a one-year warranty as a matter of course. The luminosity feature and magnified date window make it a great choice if you work or play in low light.
If you want something that looks like a Tag Heuer but without the luxury watch brand price tag, this is a good option!
8. Casio Edifice Multi-Function Men’s Watch
This watch has three sub-dials for 12 hour, 60 minute and 60-second displays, in addition to the standard time. It also features a fold-over, push-down clasp on the stainless strap, keeping it secure throughout your activities. If you’re looking for a classy timepiece that shrieks sophistication, this is a great choice.
9. Fossil Machine Three Hand Stainless Steel Men’s Watch
This quality watch is a chameleon piece. It looks at home as a dress watch riding below the cuff of your best suit, and it also looks great paired with jeans and a t-shirt. Backed by Fossil’s 11-year warranty as a matter of course and beautifully crafted, this smoke-colored piece is guaranteed to become the go-to accessory for nearly every occasion.
10. MVMT Watches Black Face Men’s Watch
If you like the look of a simple watch, this minimalist offering from MVMT is right up your alley. With just a plain black face, tick marks to denote the hours and a single date window, there is nothing overdone or extravagant about this design. The is understated and suited to the simple design. It’s definitely a classy, low-key piece for the budget-conscious.
11. Timex Weekender Watch
If you’re looking for a fun watch to pair with casual outfits, this is a great option. The band is blue and yellow woven nylon, and the face features both civilian and military timekeeping. An Indiglo night light is also included. This watch is water-resistant to 99 feet, meaning it can withstand splashes of water or exposure to rain but you won’t want to submerge it.
12. PUMA Ultrasize Black Sport Men’s Watch
Boasting a 50mm diameter, this piece is perfect for the large-framed man or one who likes to wear his accessories oversized. A true fashion statement, this sports watch comes in eight different colors schemes to match your favorite hues.
Do be aware, however, that the dial knob is configure for left-handed men!
13. Timex Easy Reader Men’s Watch
Another dress watch designed with the older gentleman in mind, this watch features a white dial with generously sized numerals that do not appear comical to the casual observer.
It’s also an excellent choice if you take your contacts out at night and still want to be able to check the time. With classic lines and a simple white face, the watch would not be out of place at any casual gathering. It comes with Timex’s one-year warranty at no additional charge.
14. Fossil Nate Men’s Chronograph Watch
For men who like a more gritty, industrial feel to their accessories, this Fossil watch is right on point. The bezel is gear-edged and the face is utilitarian black and gray. Water-resistant to 165 feet, this watch is a great choice if you like your adornments to be understated yet add visual interest.
It’s definitely a stand-out piece, for those who would take notice!
15. Timex Expedition Field Chronograph Men’s Watch
Featuring an indigo night light, tachymeter, a date window and a buckle closure, this watch is perfect for men who like to work or play outdoors. It is also water-resistant to 330 feet, making it a great choice for snorkeling or swimming.
You won’t want to wear it for diving, however. With classic, black styling and a genuine crystal face, this is a timepiece that will stand the test of time in both form and function.
16. Seiko 5 Automatic Stainless Steel Men’s Watch
This Seiko automatic watch has all the bells and whistles you need, but presents it all in a plain and strikingly attractive manner. It features a date window in either English or Spanish, sword-shaped hands, a sweeping second hand and a mineral dial window. This is a great option for the man on the go. The canvas strap can be removed and hand-washed if sweat or other odors become an issue.
This watch is not water-resistant, so you’ll only want to wear it when you won’t be popping by the pool for a swim!
17. Invicta Pro Diver Collection Silver-Tone Men’s Watch
For those who prefer an all-metal timepiece, the stainless steel Invicta fits the bill nicely. It has a similar aesthetic to a Tag Heuer watch, but at a more affordable price. Equipped with a unilateral bezel and removable links, the band can be customized to fit your wrist perfectly. The face is flame fusion crystal and features a magnifier to highlight the date window.
It’s also water-resistant to 660 feet. If you’re looking for a gorgeous watch that stands up to an active lifestyle, this is an excellent choice.
18. Seiko Men’s Adventure-Solar Classic Casual Watch
This Seiko watch derives its power from either natural or indoor light and can withstand water depths of up to 330 feet. The supple brown leather strap and timeless brushed steel give this piece an attractive look, and the alarm chronograph is easy to set.
If you’re looking for a watch that can serve as a backup for your wake-up call while traveling, stand up to the elements and look awesome, this casual wrist watch is a winner.
19. Nautica Men’s Stainless Steel Watch with Blue Resin Band
Featuring a plethora of options and a smart, snappy style, this a great casual watch with a eye-catching blue dial. The hardy resin band is adjustable, and the face is protected by a mineral window. Whether for work or play, this bold blue design is handsome and substantial on the wrist. It comes with Nautica’s five-year warranty at no additional charge.
20. Citizen Sport Men’s Stainless Steel Watch with Black Leather Band
The black, red and white face of this piece eschews the traditional two-tone color scheme so often employed in other watches, and the contrasting stitching on the band adds creative flair. It comes backed by Citizen’s five-year warranty and will compliment any casual outfit.
21. Alessi Tic15 Analog Display Analog Quartz Black Men’s Watch
Another not-quite-round offering on our list, the curved square casing of this piece gives it instant visual appeal. Sleek and clean, this unfussy design will be a compliment to almost any occasion. It has quartz movement and is water-resistant to 99 feet, making it a great choice for everyday wear.
22. Invicta 1517 I Force Collection Watch
Another on our list designed for left-handed men, this watch is something special. Water-resistant to 330 feet and featuring oversize stenciled numbers and a sub dial, this watch is great for any casual outfit. The cloth band is extremely durable and stands up to dirt, sweat and grime.
If you lead an active lifestyle, this watch will be right at home in your collection.
23. TRIWA Blue Steel Nevil Canvas Watch
This watch comes in a whopping 14 color variations, all of them beautiful. You may decide to add more than one to your collection!
Designed in Sweden, this watch features Japanese quartz movement, a stainless steel casing and a strap made from Tärnsjö organic leather. TRIWA, which stands for Transforming the Industry of Watches, believes in the artistry of fine jewelry and it shows in their product.
24. Victorinox Swiss Army Alliance Watch
Another fine dress watch from the makers of the Swiss Army knife, this watch is emblazoned with the internally recognized cross and shield emblem. It has no sub-dials, tachymeter or other add-ons to detract from its simple and appealing style.
This watch will be at home with all but the most formal of outfits and carries a two-year warranty.
25. Ingersoll Automatic Stainless Steel Bull Run Watch
Again, Ingersoll remakes the classics and brings them into the present day. With a highly polished stainless steel casing, two sub-dials, a date aperture and arrow-shaped hands, this quartz watch is beautiful.
The band features contrasting stitching on the fine-grain leather, adding depth and detail to the workmanship. This watch will compliment any casual occasion and can be relied upon for years to come.
26. Tissot Quickster Chronograph Black Leather Men’s Watch
Made with scratch-resistant sapphire crystal and Swiss automatic movement, this watch is a smart and utilitarian choice. If you’re looking for a solid Swiss watch that isn’t flashy, this is an excellent option. It’s also guaranteed for two years.
27. Seiko Sport Solar Men’s Beige Watch
Are you getting tired of squinting down at your watch or holding it closer and closer to your face? Don’t worry, we all get a bit nearsighted with age, especially over the age of 40.
If you’re not quite ready for reading glasses or a comically huge watch, this is a great choice from Seiko. The numerals, indices and luminous hands stand out in stark white against a black background, and the numerals are generous in size. It’s a perfect casual watch for the older gentleman.
28. Seiko Men’s 5 Watch Blue Canvas Band
This simple and affordable watch has a clean, crisp aesthetic to it and doesn’t bog down its design with a ton of bells and whistles. It’s time and date, end of.
If you want a watch for casual wear, this Seiko is a shoo-in. The band is forgiving and comfortable against your wrist, and it’s blue color will likely compliment your existing wardrobe. The price is also extremely affordable.
29. Tommy Hilfiger Men’s Stainless Steel Watch With Brown Leather Band
Featuring the Hilfiger logo at the three o’clock position, this wrist watch is a statement piece. It is a bright, shiny stainless steel work of art that you’ll be proud to wear at all but the most stuffy of workplaces. The calfskin leather band uses a buckle closure and the date window is beside the logo at three o’clock.
If you’re a fan of Tommy clothing, cologne or luggage, you can complete your look with this stunning accessory.