The Symbol of the White Picket Fence

White Picket Fence

Symbol of the White Picket Fence

A white picket fence is more than just an assembly of wood used to outline a home’s lawn.  In America, the white picket fence has become an icon since its early use during the colonial era.

Practical Use of the White Picket Fence

On the practical side, it is an attractive way to keep children and pets in the yard without blocking the new from the road. Most aren’t more than four feet tall in order to maintain an open yard feeling. A horizontal top rail and bottom rail are easily attached to fence posts and installed into the ground for a symmetric and uniform appearance. Throughout history these fences were constructed of wood and painted white, but today other non-wood options like vinyl and PVC have also become popular.

The White Picket Fence, an American Icon

While these fences are still in practical use around the country, they have come to symbolize the ultimate form of the American dream: a happy family that lives in a modest residential home with children, pets, and a sense of community safety. This classic suburban concept is something that so many men and women pursue throughout their lives. Many people believe that buying “the house with the white picket fence” is an ultimate goal in life.

Throughout movies, they are used to symbolize the perfect middle-class suburban life. This prevailing imagery has led to what some call the “White Picket Syndrome,” in which a person blindly holds on to the idea of a perfect lifestyle despite its inability to every really exist. No life is as perfect as the movies want to portray, and dreams of a white picket fence lifestyle aren’t always realistic.