Monday, February 04, 2013

House M.B. (Made in Brittany)

Houses in Brittany - part 1 - roofs

Since I was a little girl, when we went out for a walk with my parents, we would go to streets we've never been before just to see the houses or we would choose a street only because we loved the houses in it.
I was bound to love houses.

Depuis toute petite, lorsque mes parents m'emmenaient en ballade, ils choisissait une rue nouvelle juste pour y découvrir les maisons ou alors une rue souvent arpentée, juste parce qu'ils y trouvaient les maisons jolies. Bref, j'étais condamnée à aimer les maisons! 

Pour la série du mois de février, je vous invite donc à me rejoindre en ballade pour admirer les maisons de ma région, la Bretagne.

For this month series, I'll take you with me for a walk to see some beautiful houses in Brittany, which is that pink part of France in the map.

For the first part, we're going to concentrate on roofs. When I take the train back to Paris, the change in house roofs is for me the sure sign that I'm out of Brittany. On my way back, the first slate roof is as sure a sign that I'm back!

Dans cette première partie, je vous propose de nous concentrer sur les toits. Quand je repars pour Paris en train, je sais que j'ai définitivement quitté la Bretagne quand les toits d'ardoise s'effacent du paysage. A mon retour, leur réapparition m'annonce que la Bretagne n'est plus loin!

But slates were only for rich people back in the days and most houses had thatched roofs. They are quite rare now. 

Mais avant que l'ardoise ne se "démocratise", les gens moins fortunés avaient des toits de chaumes.

You might notice behind the bushes some exterior stone stairs, which are typical of houses in South Brittany.

Peut-être apercevez-vous derrière les buissons de la photo ci-dessus un escalier en pierre extérieur, typique du Sud de la Bretagne.

I love small arch doors.

The "waves" in the roof are common in tatched houses.

La maison ci-dessous a probablement été une chaumière car elle en conserve la forme du toit.

That's how I know this one above probably had a thatched roof before.

My second favourite kind of roofs are the one made of old Britton slates.

If you look closely, you'll notice that slates are of uneven colour, are rather thick and have varying sizes depending on where they are on the roof. Maybe it's easier to see on the next two pictures, which are of a house near my parents'.

Une couverture que j'adore est celle réalisée en ardoises bretonne, à l'ancienne: les ardoises sont de couleur irrégulière, épaisses et leur taille varie selon leur place sur la toiture. Cela a un charme incomparable, selon moi, jamais obtenu par l'ardoise moderne.

To me those slates have a charm and gives the house some character that doesn't compare to a house with modern slate, however pretty the house is.

The most common roof today consists of even colored slates with red/orange tiles on top.

Thank you for joining me today. 
I hope you enjoyed admiring those houses. Do you have a favourite?

Pictures that are marked are mine, the others were taken from the site Pierre et Mer, which specializes in selling wonderful properties in Brittany, far out of my budget and which didn't sponsored me by promising me a house, unfortunately.

Les photos "marquées" sont les miennes, les autres proviennent du site Pierre et Mer, agent immobilier qui vend des propriétés situées en Bretagne, toutes bien loin de mon budget et non, ils ne me sponsorisent pas et ne m'ont pas promis, à mon grand regret, de maison.

In the next part, we'll admire stone houses and the different kind of stones used. Please, suscribe or follow if you don't want to miss that next part!

See you soon!

                             Weekend Bloggy Reading


  1. i did enjoy the tour!! i love seeing the old architecture .. the 1st and last my favourites.

  2. Oui, les toits de ces maisons bretonnes sont vraiment beaux et les maisons aussi sont belles... Et puis cela permet de rêver...

  3. In my neighborhood there are several houses with very old slate roofs. They have so much interest and character. I love them.
    When I traveled abroad, I remember seeing workman repair or make new thatched enchanting. I guess they (roofs) are pretty strong...but no doubt expensive. Regardless they make a home look so very inviting.
    Thanks for the lovely tour!

  4. Thanks for sharing these wonderful photos. I love the old thatched roofs in Europe!


  5. Those are gorgeous! I love the colors of the first house. The last roof is interesting in that my house has a shingle, not slate, with tile along the rim like that one. They did it a lot around here and I need to replace it after the kitchen is done. I was going to keep the tile part, but I really hate the shingles.

  6. I forgot to say I love this post. And I should get out and take some photos of the different kind of homes they built in the southwest. Not as old thought. Santa Fe is more interesting.

    1. I would love to see more of the houses around your place. They would look so exotic to me!

  7. Hi Magali!!!

    I'm getting to these late, sorry!!

    I love #1, 4 & 7. House #1 I find elegant and I love the color. House #4 I love the thatched roof and the arches and house #7 I love the different colors of the slates.

    I would love to live with this history.

    Thank you!!


  8. I am going to love this series. I LOVE looking a houses. Thatched roofs are my favorite. They are so charming and remind me of fairy tales. But the older slate roofs are also beautiful and charming.

  9. It’s amazing how you can manage to tell if you’re in one place just by looking at the roofs! Most of the time, it’s the smell of the air that tells you where you are, whether you’re in the country or in the city. Anyway, most countries in Europe do have distinctive roof designs. And I find those in Brittany really good. The slate roof is actually a part of Brittany’s local culture. The “Blue Stone”, as they call it.

  10. Thank you for the tour and for the special insights you imparted with us about the distinction of roofs in Brittany! Well, roofs and the make of houses can depict a picture of culture and history. Most of the time, homeowners pick the materials to use on their houses based on the weather. Comparing houses from different places is quite fascinating too.
    Soo @ Willi Roofing Services

  11. I was mesmerized with those spectacular roof designs. The thatched roofs are, indeed, unique. It depicts the life of European people, especially in the urban area. However, slates are the now the popular ones. As they are more flexible and can easily complement with different modern home styles. @ Royal Roofing & Siding, Inc.

  12. This blog clear my all query.I was looking for something like this thanks for sharing check out Roofing Company Culter Bay


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