While many of us tend to idealize the past (rightly, in many ways), the past certainly had its share of imperfections. People have been altering and remodeling old houses ever since houses were first built. Today we’ll go back in time 93 years and take a look at home remodeling trends which were popular in the 1920’s.
As I look at these images, it is apparent that the main difference between today’s remodelings and those of the past is quality. The use of stucco was promoted, for example. Today we use Dryvit or similar products. Interior walls were still plastered in the 1920’s… today we use sheets of drywall. Architects then had a deeper understanding of various architectural styles and their histories… today, not so much. Despite the fact that these homes were altered from their original character, the finished product was in many instances better than the “before” house. I don’t ever get that feeling from old houses which are newly remodeled today!
Most of the following photos come from a book of home designs published in 1927 by C. Lane Bowes. Copies were distributed as promotional material by various lumber yards and are available to us today courtesy of the amazing archive.org. Let’s look at some updates from nearly a century ago!