Changing faces: architectural façades collection

Clever devices for comparing designs

Inspired by the We Live in the Office exhibition which takes us on an architectural journey as told through the history of the façade we thought it would be fun to put together a gallery of architectural drawings all of which feature moveable flaps, an ingenious graphic device by which the reader can view alternative designs on one sheet.

One of the major proponents of this device was the landscape architect Humphry Repton. Repton would produce a Red Book, so called because of their red Morocco leather bindings, for the client of each of his proposed landscape schemes. These bound volumes of essays and watercolours served as persuasive marketing tools for his work and included both 'before' and 'after' views of the development sites utilising overlaid paper flaps to indicate Repton's suggested improvements. One such example held by the RIBA is the Langley Park Red Book for Sir Peter Burrell in 1790 for his Beckenham seat.

One of Repton’s sons, the architect George Stanley Repton, also employed this device to good effect for example at Kitley House showing 'before' and 'after' views from all four points of the compass for the MP for Devonshire, Edmund Pollexfen Bastard.

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108600 items
RIBA125756Model of a house at Oxshott 'A' (no. 2)

 
RIBA125757Model of a house at Oxshott 'A' (no. 2)

 
RIBA125758Model of a house at Oxshott 'A' (no. 2)


RIBA125759Model of a house at Oxshott 'A' (no. 2)

 
RIBA125760Model of a house at Oxshott 'A' (no. 2)

 
RIBA125761Model of a house at Oxshott 'A' (no. 2)


RIBA125762Model of a house at Oxshott 'A' (no. 2)

 
RIBA125763'The By-pass in the Town': panel 17 from 'Traffic' exhibition

 
RIBA125764Brancepeth Castle, County Durham: ceiling detail


RIBA125765Designs for Tilehurst, 10 Grange Road, Bushey, for Miss Edith Somers: site plan

 
RIBA125766Designs for Tilehurst, 10 Grange Road, Bushey, for Miss Edith Somers: ground floor plan

 
RIBA125767Designs for Tilehurst, 10 Grange Road, Bushey, for Miss Edith Somers: first floor plan and plan of roof of coal cellar


RIBA125768Designs for Tilehurst, 10 Grange Road, Bushey, for Miss Edith Somers: west (street) elevation with a section through the tradesmen's entrance

 
RIBA125769Designs for Tilehurst, 10 Grange Road, Bushey, for Miss Edith Somers: east (garden) elevation; north elevation including the bathroom dormer window; plans, elevation and details of the built-in dresser for the kitchen

 
RIBA125770Designs for Tilehurst, 10 Grange Road, Bushey, for Miss Edith Somers: sections


RIBA125771Preliminary design for Myholme, convalescent home for children, 170 Merryhill Road, Bushey, for Miss Edith Somers: plans and elevations

 
RIBA125772Sketch of a Burmese tigress

 
RIBA125773Sketch of a heron in Richmond


RIBA125774Two sketches of John Dory; one by Donald Gunn and one by Voysey

 
RIBA125775Two half-elevations for doorways, possibly alternative designs; (right) the porte-cochere of the Hotel d'Almeyras, 30 rue des Francs-Bourgeois, Paris

 
RIBA125776Half-elevation of the upper part of a door or window with pedimented tablet and a cartouche over


RIBA125777Two half-elevations of entrances: (left) square opening; (right) arched opening bearing arms of France with a ducal coronet in a cartouche

 
RIBA125778Four half-elevations of doorways

 
RIBA125779Two half-elevations of doorways