Thursday, February 25, 2010

Digging Midcentury Modern

 La Jolla Shores
La Jolla Shores

Kiki, here..

To say I dig midcentury modern design from clothes to architecture is to say I dig breathing.  It's a big part of who I am.  It's no wonder I gave birth to iCafe Woman Moderne in an Art Moderne Midcentury home from architecture, decor to entertainment.   

The Ontario Tweed Home above is the kind of architecture you'll see in areas throughout the U.S. and in Canada. 

Midcentury Modern is a simple, geometric and linear design with a hint of mystery.  It also has a close connection to the outdoors through atriums and extended patios.  That's the mystery of it all, why this simple design has such a cool effect on people.  My favorite is the architecture.  I love the flat and angled roof designs.  Architect Joseph Eichler is one of the masters of the latter.

Marin Modern Real Estate Blog - Eichler Homes in Northern California



Eichler Updated Kitchen

In the 1950s, you could buy an Eicher home for $3,000 now they cost over $500,000 and are mostly found in the San Francisco, Northern California regions.



Eichler Homes History

Developer Joseph Eichler and his Eichler Homes, Inc. built nearly 11,000 single-family homes in California, beginning in the late 1940s.  Eichler became engrossed with building communities of homes characterized by both flair and affordability.  

Their house designs confused the traditional masses -- emphasizing boldness, change, and optimism through indoor-outdoor living, walls of glass, atriums, and radiant-heat floors.  

A strong proponent of fair housing and deeply opposed to racial discrimination, the liberal Eichler was the first large, tract builder to sell to minorities, and even built a home on his own lot for an NAACP leader. 

He resigned from the National Association of Home Builders in 1958 in protest of racial discrimination policies and, according to reports from long-time Eichler owners, offered to buy back homes from those who had trouble accepting their neighbors.

"If, as you claim, this will destroy property values," Joe once told some disgruntled Eichler owners, "I could lose millions...You should be ashamed of yourselves for wasting your time and mine with such pettiness."

It was HGTV that first turned me on to midcentury design when I first started watching the network over ten years ago.  Before then, I was more into Art Deco design.  

This year, HGTV aired a new series called, Sara's House.  Sara, a successful Canadian interior designer purchased a midcentury home, where each week she invites viewers inside to watch her renovate one room at a time.  I love it!  This is my someday dream.

But I'm not the only one in this fan club.  Most of our iCafe Woman Moderne divas dig midcentury modern design.  Since I'm the president, I've got dibs on showing off my favorites.

Willie Mays Hillside Home

 Before and After 1956 Dallas Home





Moderne Philadelphia

Louis Kahn

 Architecture from Louis Kahn
homes in Montgomery County, PA

1947-1950  AIA gold medal winner (above)
This home is at the beginning of Kahn's use of materials to help define the structure. The checkerboard window pattern could be adjusted with the large panels sliding up and down in the living room wing.  The home has a 'bi nuclear' floor plan with the bedrooms well segregated from the entertaining wing

Cliff May Architecture - Below
"Cliff May and the Modern Ranch House" (Rizzoli; $60) charts the career of the designer and builder who popularized the postwar Western ranch house and its influence on California's penchant for indoor and outdoor living.

It shows how May expanded the building lexicon for home developers who relied on stock house plans that were old-fashioned and rigid, and also comes at a time when contemporary prefabricated, greener versions of the ranch house are on the rise.

Midcentury Modern Office
1950s The Little Black Dress

1 comment:

nussprint said...

Boy, did I enjoy this blog! It combines my two favorites--food and clothes! So much so that I"m heading to the kitchen to make some Irish potatoes for St. Patrick's Day--I only make them once a year (so fattening!), but they are true comfort food. Next, I'm heading over to T. J. Maxx to look for a spring trench coat. You've set up my day! Thanks for sharing!