Have you seen the spectacular brick on Detroit’s vintage buildings? The workmanship and designs found on the old places are incredible. Some of the layouts are three-dimensional, creating interesting framed patterns that cast fascinating shadows on the surrounding flat bricks walls. The shadows, multifaceted designs, and layered bricks add depth and interest to an otherwise plain brick building.
The old world brick laying craftsmanship can be seen on both old homes and commercial buildings scattered throughout the city. On a few of the buildings I’ve spotted while bicycling, there are custom corners where bricks have been cut on angles. When they were placed on walls they incorporated both vertical and horizontal lines. The corner designs compliment the wall patterns where the cut corners are located.
In other cases, talented bricklayers used both vertical and horizontal brick in angled layouts creating interesting herringbone patterns and designs. Those designs remind me of centuries old European streets. Still others are designed and laid out in various arches that enhance a traditional checker board pattern found below the arch. There are also dental type moldings designs in much of the brickwork that are quite similar to wood trim found on many older colonial style homes. Examples of those can be spotted along rooflines.
Other patterns I’ve seen include half, bottomless arches that seem to flow across the building much like decorative braids found on the outside of a wedding cake. Not all brick patterns are built from traditional reddish-orange bricks. There are a multitude of colorful ones that are featured in layouts creating a colorful collage of lively patterns.
Unfortunately many of the intricate brick patterns are slowly being lost as many of the older buildings in Detroit are being torn down. Take a look at the intricate designs that old world bricklayers from past generations have put together before it becomes too late. Their work can be spotted everywhere in this incredible city!