Great question, Where Do Barn Stars come from?
During the 18th and 19th century house building was way more difficult than it is today. You simply couldn’t run to Home Depot or Lowe’s to pick up eighteen 12′ 2×4’s at 8:00 at night (along with a 4 pack of peanut butter cups- don’t judge a woman when she’s working).
I’ve always thought I would like to live way back in those days until the reality of no Lowe’s or Home Depot hit me. I love building supply stores the same way other women love makeup and cute shoes.
“Wouldn’t I look fabulous in this tool belt?!?!?!”
18th century craftsmen had their work cut out for them. Their creativity always astonishes me; take a good look at houses built 200 years ago. It’s a thing of beauty; the effort and care they put into house building is something to admire. The details that were created by hand put current mass produced homes to shame.
Their ingenuity served them well in regards to their use of barn star plates. These stars were wrought iron with the threads in the middle. Tie rods were run through a house from left to right. The stars were screwed onto the ends along with a nut to keep the house from leaning.
Barn star plates are seen extensively on colonial homes throughout Pennsylvania and Virginia.
From their start as a necessary element in construction, stars then took on a more decorative use. Barn builders started using different star variations to distinguish their building designs from another’s. Barn stars went from an eight inch wrought iron to something now up to six feet wide and made of wood or metal.
In the last 10 years Barn Stars as we know them today have made a resurgence and can be seen just about anywhere from a country home’s front door to an event center in a major city.
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