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Enfilade

Definition: Enfilade

You've probably walked straight through an enfilade without even knowing it. The term refers to an architectural feature where a set of rooms are aligned directly with each other. The arrangement, where all of the doors open on an axis onto each other, allows a view of the entire column of rooms from one end to the other. "Enfiler" in French means "to thread," so it's as if the doors of each room were strung on the same piece of thread.

You'll see this type of alignment in grand, Baroque European estates and palaces, such as this one in the Royal Academy of Arts in London (1768). It's also common in railroad-style apartments in the US, and in particular, New Orleans Shotgun houses (which get their name from the saying that a shotgun blast at the front door could pass uninterrupted through all the rooms to the back).
If you have this feature in your home, you can make the most of it by joining each room in the enfilade with a cohesive element, such as paint color, accessories with a shared color or shape, or even a set of curtains in the same fabric hung in each doorway. This will bring unity and tranquility to your house.
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