Vernacular Architecture (1)

Vernacular architecture is an architectural style which reflects local traditions. It is designed based on the local needs and availability of construction materials locally. The term “vernacular” initiated in 1800 as a concept. It originated when the people were forced to use natural resources as a shelter, in response to the climate. It is the simplest form for addressing human needs. It is a type of architecture which is indigenous to a specific time and place and is not copied or replicated from anywhere and uses handmade old construction practices. It puts an emphasis on sustainability, on using materials ensuring the home which stays cooler from inside without the need of power intensive air-conditioning. It includes the basic green architectural principles of energy efficiency and using the materials in the proximity of the site.

In the modern world, vernacular strategies need to be applied to modern architecture. The architectural design for home is incorporated as a vernacular style in the contemporary forms. Many of the sustainable architectural design principles depend on the references to vernacular architecture.

The Encyclopedia of the Vernacular Architecture of the world defines vernacular architecture as comprising of the dwellings and all other buildings. It is related to their environmental contexts and available resources. They utilize traditional technologies. The vernacular architecture is built to meet the specific needs, accommodating the values, economies, and ways of life of the cultures that produce them.
It is influenced by human behavior and the environment. The architects have been sourcing climate responsive methods which can be applied to modern construction. It is a result of four basic factors including:


In vernacular architecture, users design and build at the same place. So, vernacular houses are more cost-effective as compared to contemporary style houses. An affordable home design methodology is used to minimize cost and environmental impacts.

Frank Lloyd Wright describes vernacular architecture as “Folk building growing in response to actual needs, fitted into an environment by people who knew no better than to fit them with native feeling.”