Wrought iron fences are often associated with large manors and estates, adding prestige and sophistication to the property. Both the beautiful, ornate designs and the sturdy construction make wrought iron the fence of choice for those who wish to enhance the beauty of their landscape while providing added security. If you are considering installing a wrought iron fence around your existing property, or are restoring an old estate and want to recreate its original glory, you are probably wondering what style of panels you should choose. Consider one of these styles to upgrade or restore your property.
Picket & Scalloped Picket Fences
The traditional picket fence is designed with two or three horizontal rails with vertical pickets evenly spaced along the rails. The pickets may all be the same length, creating a smooth, level top to the fence, or long and short pickets may be alternated to give it an uneven appearance. Pickets may be topped with a wide selection of finials (the decorative tip attached to the top of the picket) to complete the look. The picket fence can be installed on a cement slab, stone, or brick. A scalloped picket fence includes both pickets and ornamental panels. Wrought iron fences topped with large finials provide more security, as the fence is more difficult and painful to scale.
Hairpin & Bow Fences
A hairpin fence also has horizontal rails, but in place of the pickets, upside down U's fill in the panels. This creates a smooth top to the fence that looks like soft waves of wrought iron floating on the rails. The bow fence has larger U's than the hairpin fence and larger and wider panels. Hairpin and bow fences are typically chosen for their graceful beauty. Although they will deter neighborhood children or pedestrians from cutting across your lawn and will improve security, they are less effective at deterring determined intruders than fences with tall finials and spears.
You don't need to stick with one design when you install a wrought iron fence. Panels can be mixed and matched to suit your tastes and needs. Some choose to alternate panels of pickets with hairpin panels or combine both pickets and hairpins in each panel. Other options include picket panels alternating with custom panels with intricate designs, such as scenes of wildlife, delicate flowers, or soaring birds. Others. like famed horror writer Stephen King, choose a custom fence that expresses their personality. King's home in Bangor, Maine, features a wrought iron fence complete with spider webs, black cats and soaring bats.
Gates, Archways and Arbors
Many prefer to install a traditional picket or bow fence and save the fancy work for gates, archways, and arbors that complement the fence. These come in array of styles and designs and can be a less-expensive way to add a personal touch to your wrought iron fence than going with a complete custom fence. If you are looking to add class and sophistication to your property, consider installing a traditional fence and pump up the theatrics with custom pieces for the front gate or the entrance to your garden. Archways and arbors covered with climbing flowers, like climbing roses or flowering vines, create a magical gateway to other parts of the garden.
Considering your purpose for installing a wrought iron fence will help you decide which style is right for you. If you still aren't sure, take the time to visit a fencing supply company or browse online to get an idea of the many decorative panels, finials, and gates available. You may be surprised to find just the fence panels you are looking for, but never knew existed.