Ornamental Iron lacework is one of the defining features of the Australian terrace. This was prominently displayed on the verandah balustrades and also in fringes, friezes and brackets above the eaves between the party walls. Functionally they served to filter the strong Australian sun, however they were used as much for pure decoration incorporating fanciful elements including elaborate columns and toward the turn of the century, Australiana.
Graham Robertson noted that while many visit New Orleans to get a taste of decorative ironwork, inner city Sydney and Melbourne have always possess it in a much greater amounts.
Originally it was imported, and the earliest use was wrought iron. However as its fashion reached a peak in the 1880s, it was increasingly produced in local foundries, with a large number of mass produced cast iron patterns being commissioned.