Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Stretcher Bond Patterns for Brick facing or Brick veneer

I'm working on a project right now at work with a solid brick wall along the back, and a light and dark metal wall next to it.  I was asked to "make the wall more interesting" so the neighbours from the back can have something to look at instead of a plain brick fire wall.  Traditional masonry would vary the stretcher and header bricks to make a pattern, but there are still options for modern stretcher bond patterns; Using a light and dark variation (or any two colours) there are many options to animate a wall. Below are a few that we preferred, some are just sketches so you'll have to imagine the rest of the wall complete.  Each pattern can be varied a great deal by changing the size of each "stripe" and the spacing between, also choosing only a portion of the wall to apply a pattern often has a better result than applying the pattern to the entire wall area.

Brick Patterns for Stretcher Bond


Argyle Criss Cross


Diagonal Stripe

Residential: 3 Stories, Typical Montreal Canada Walk-up

Montreal walk-ups developed out of a city requirement to have a certain setback from the sidewalk. When the city began booming during the late 1800s new housing began to be erected for workers. Other industrial cities (such as London) had problems with daylight entering the street because many streets were very narrow.  Therefore, it was decided that a certain setback from the street would be required to ensure that trees could be planted in front of the housing.  For developers, this meant a setback of unusable/unbuildable space that would infringe on their profits, so entry stairways were placed on the exterior of buildings to find some use for the 'setback' area where they could not build, and thus the stairways and three storey walk-up architecture of Montreal was born.

These are also called 'triplex' or 'plex' architecture because there are duplex, triplex, sixplex, etc. depending on the configuration.

Before the 1940s the walls are built with 'bois sur bois' construction method where large pieces of wood are set on edge between columns with 'channels' cut out to receive the wood pieces. Non-structural brick facing was used to protect the wood structure from fire by building code, consequently most of Montreal's residential architecture is brick construction, even today these laws still exist although the wood framing methods below the brick have changed.

Typical Triplex Layout

Street Block Layout: