Looking Back at the Shed Style

Looking Back at the Shed Style

It seemed so hip, so NOW... forty-odd years ago, anyway.  As a kind of a bridge between the Contemporary style of the mid-twentieth century and the Post Modern movement of the late-twentieth century, the Shed style had a brief moment of glory in the early 70's.  Shed...

More Louis Curtiss!

More Louis Curtiss!

Just one more post about Louis Curtiss and then I promise to move on to other stuff for a while!  Given that virtually all of Curtiss' work is "lesser-known", saying so about some of the following may be redundant!  Still, there are a few places that are more obscure...

The Mysterious Louis Curtiss

The Mysterious Louis Curtiss

Louis Curtiss, who left his mark on Kansas City and other locations in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, was one of those incredibly rare architects who was just weird enough to do really, really, interesting work.  While often compared to Frank Lloyd...

Five Haunting Abandoned Houses

Five Haunting Abandoned Houses

While driving through a sparsely populated area of southwestern Nebraska I encountered a depressing amount of Victorian-era houses (which had once been grand for their locale) in advanced stages of deterioration.  Despite their weathered facades, these houses were...

The Sudden Loss of Character

The Sudden Loss of Character

I drove by a house today which is undergoing an unfortunate and all-too-common procedure: it is losing its architectural integrity and will be gaining lots of vinyl and other synthetic products.  I caught the house mid-way though the process... replacement windows...

Auction Action – Part 2

Auction Action – Part 2

Today it was time once again for the Lions Clubs' annual consignment auction... an event generally I think of as marking the near arrival of Spring.  It was breezy outside, but at least it wasn't snowing as it had last year.  As there wasn't anything that I couldn't...

Fun With Nit-picking

Fun With Nit-picking

I love looking at houses on Zillow.com - you never know what will turn up.  I used to look only at old houses there (those built in the early twentieth century or earlier).  But lately I find myself drawn to the clumsy and distorted newer houses which are increasingly...

A Century-Old Tiny House

A Century-Old Tiny House

Long before it became fashionable and trendy, living on a small scale was quite common.  In most towns and cities, the earliest houses were built on a modest and utilitarian scale.  Many such structures, particularly those of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries,...

Replacement Windows Scar Row House

Replacement Windows Scar Row House

There are replacement window installations and then there are really strange replacement window installations.  The center house of three contiguous row houses has had some rather uncommon surgery on its two primary windows in order to accommodate the installation of...

Neo-Victorian Houses

Neo-Victorian Houses

Americans have long been noted for their eagerness to embrace whatever is new - even when it's a revival of something old!  This has been especially true of architectural styles.  In the 18th century we were embracing Classical details in new construction;  the 19th...

Inside a Monolithic Dome

Inside a Monolithic Dome

While not exactly a house, this 1970's domed structure could easily be one.  It certainly has potential!  This popped up today on Zillow and got my immediate attention.  I became intrigued as I looked at the images - all are from zillow.com:                          ...

Vinyl Siding Revisited

Vinyl Siding Revisited

It's been over a year since I first posted about vinyl siding, so I thought it was high time to take a look at some more houses which are shrouded in it.   Vinyl is often used to conceal the scars that result when window openings are unfortunately reduced or porches...

Demolition by Neglect

Demolition by Neglect

An astounding number of historic structures disappear each year simply because the owners have stopped caring for them.  Known as "demolition by neglect", the phenomenon is on the rise.  Recognizing that old buildings are instrumental in giving shape and character to...

Just for Fun…

Just for Fun…

Don't be alarmed; I won't be doing McMansions on a regular basis as there is already an excellent site doing just that.  But I saw this on Zillow.com and couldn't resist.  I've taken the following nine photos from the listing there which really don't need any captions...

Joined at the Hip

Joined at the Hip

At first glance, this house appears to be a rather ordinary Craftsman style bungalow (aside from the 1960's iron porch supports, vinyl siding and plastic shutters, that is).  However, appearances can be deceiving.  This "bungalow" is actually an addition to  a much...

Inside a Craftsman Bungalow

Inside a Craftsman Bungalow

I happened upon this Craftsman-style bungalow a few days ago; the bright yellow facade initially caught my eye.  The sides still display an earlier, less vibrant, color scheme.  The new look, with its dark brown shingled gable, does a better job of emulating a period...

High Plains Modern

High Plains Modern

Modern design - as expressed in the mid-20th century - was never enthusiastically embraced in flyover country.  Much of what little was built here has since been altered or destroyed.  However, there are a few examples here and there which have managed to survive....

Architectural Trauma

Architectural Trauma

Structures which read as disorderly or awkward compositions are often victims of remodeling projects in which the maintenance of architectural integrity was not a top priority.  Exhibiting a form of architectural psychosis, such structures are increasingly...

A Late Example of Gothic Revival

A Late Example of Gothic Revival

Not platted until 1886, the town of Haigler, Nebraska, is an unlikely spot to find a house built in the Gothic Revival style.  Most popular in the mid-19th century, the romantic style was never commonplace anywhere in Nebraska for houses; it is especially surprising...

The War On Old Buildings – Part 1

The War On Old Buildings – Part 1

Those who are passionate about old buildings have often wondered why there has long been such a bias toward them.  Those of us who value old buildings and houses understand that these places typically have numerous attributes; they are frequently built of superior...

Wasted Potential

Wasted Potential

It's the exceedingly rare house-in-distress which is treated to a truly historically-correct restoration.  And it's almost as uncommon to find a neglected house which receives a merely architecturally respectful renovation.  Most dilapidated houses which get a new...

Your Future Home… 61 Years Later!

Your Future Home… 61 Years Later!

Welcome to the 1956 "Parade of Homes" sponsored by the Home Builders Association of Greater Kansas City!  We'll take a look at ten of the fifty-five houses featured in the ninety-six page  "plan and guide book" published in conjunction with the house tour.  While...

The Nail That Sticks Up…

The Nail That Sticks Up…

There is much truth to the old Japanese proverb "The nail that sticks up gets hammered down".  However, the phrase is far more descriptive of rural America than it is of Japan - especially when it comes to assertive examples of styled architecture.  Victorian-era...

Backdating Wall Cabinets

Backdating Wall Cabinets

Why would anyone update when it's just as easy to backdate?  After all, there's not much appealing design out there these days; design from the early 20th century is almost always a sure bet to be more interesting than whatever has been marketed for the past 40 years....

Update!

Update!

Despite the handsome Queene Anne window sash depicted, this post is not about windows.  I just wanted to let everyone know that my internet access will be sporadic over the next few weeks as I am finally able to get an ISP for the new house (finding a reliable...