Mid-century St. louis Home

Home improvement Q&A, pictures and news fro Mid Century Modern Homes and Houses(NOT for Real Estate)

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wwilber
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Mid-century St. louis Home

Postby wwilber » Mon Oct 09, 2006 10:29 pm

Hello everyone! This is my first post, and I love this message board...so much great knowledge!

My 1952 St. Louis suburb ranch is my first home. My wife and I purchased a little over a year ago. It was designed by local builder Burton Duenke and is located in the Ridgewood subdivision consisting of dozens of homes all with the same floor plan. Most feature a car port, while ours is the only original plan with a garage.

In January 1953, Better Homes and Gardens featured one of the homes in our subdivision as "An achievement in small house planning" as thier Five Star Home of the month. The article details many of the unique features and construction details used. Some of these include: floor-to-ceiling windows, floor-to-ceiling sandstone fireplace, sliding pocket doors, built in vanity in master bedroom, prefabricated closets that double as partitions (manufactured by the Mengel company), vaulted ceilings in every room, redwood siding, and exposed post and beam construction on the exterior.
I would love to know if any of these homes exist outside the St. Louis area as the plans could be ordered through BH & G. Also, any St. Louisans, or anyone else who has info would be great!

Nate
Last edited by wwilber on Fri Dec 07, 2007 10:45 pm, edited 4 times in total.

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STLModern
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Postby STLModern » Tue Oct 10, 2006 9:55 am

wwilber,

Welcome to Lotta Livin! You probably know me already from Live Modern. I saw the home for sale that you posted over there. Too bad their too far away. I would have to consider purchasing one.

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Postby Futura Girl » Wed Oct 11, 2006 5:42 pm

nice to have more misery folks in da house!
welcome.
I'm gonna keep on the run... I'm gonna have me some fun if it costs me my very last dime.
If I wind up broke up, well, I'll always remember that I had a swingin' time

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Postby wwilber » Mon Oct 16, 2006 8:50 pm

Thanks for the welcome! I plan on posting pics on Live Modern when I get a chance. Anything to add to the "local" forum. I've been pretty busy lateley, but I'll try to get some interior shots as well. We still have a lot of work to do, but mainly little stuff for now. I am hoping to get some new windows before it gets too cold. Single pane just didn't cut it last winter! Although I do love the slim frame profile of our original windows.

I will be installing some pendant lamps in the kitchen soon, and hopefully some recessed lighting in the hallway. The lighting has been an issue as most of the rooms didn't have overhead fixtures of any kind. This is the biggest issue in the kitchten. Originally, these houses were wired with low-voltage and the main bedroom had a large knob that controlled fixtures in other parts of the house.

I'm trying to do my best to enhance what we have, without straying from the principals of MCM design. Meanwhile, my neighbor is putting vinyl siding on over their original redwood siding this week. It looks so wrong. These homes are long and low and the vertical grooves in the original siding are so important to the scale and balance. I hate that so many people live in thier homes not appreciating what they are, regardless of the style. So many just consider it a house and nothing else. At the least, I hope that my attempts inspire, even if their application is in such a modest home. Thanks again for the welcome!

Nate

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Postby STLModern » Tue Oct 17, 2006 3:35 am

Nate,

It sounds like you're on the right track! I totally agree with you about people appreciating what they have. But that's how you can tell the hard workers from the spoiled. Please do post pics up when you get a chance.

Dan

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Postby moderns-r-us » Tue Oct 17, 2006 6:26 am

wwilber wrote:
I hate that so many people live in thier homes not appreciating what they are, regardless of the style. So many just consider it a house and nothing else.

Nate


A Home should lift the spirits of the people who live in it!
"Better Living Through Modernism"

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Postby STLModern » Tue Oct 17, 2006 4:42 pm

Nicely put MRS.

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Postby robbhouston » Tue Oct 17, 2006 5:25 pm

In January 1953, Better Homes and Gardens featured one of the homes in our subdivision as "An achievement in small house planning" as thier Five Star Home of the month.


Hi wwilber. Welcome to the forum. Your house cool. I just wanted to chime in to say our home is based on a Better Homes & Gardens design, the Five Star Plan No. 2809-A, Architects Omer L. Mithun & Harold J. Nesland. I bought the place from the original owners/builders daughter, and she was nice enough to loan me the original plans (the orginal BH&G blue prints & a modified set used to build our house). I scanned them both and they're on my website (below my signature).

Do you happen to have a recent photo of the home in your neighborhood that was featured by BH&G? Be interesting to see. Thanks!

Best of luck with your home!

--Robb
http://www.nashvillemodern.com
A little website I created to showcase my home and other MCMs in and around the Nashville TN area.

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Postby moderns-r-us » Tue Oct 17, 2006 5:49 pm

STLModern wrote:Nicely put MRS.


When did I become MRS.?
"Better Living Through Modernism"

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Postby wwilber » Tue Oct 17, 2006 5:59 pm

Robb,

I have seen the photos of your home, and it looks great! I have been unable to locate a set of plans as of yet. It may be a little difficult since our subdivision was actually built by the developer and not by someone who actually bought the plans through Better Homes and Gardens. The plan number for our house was No. 2301 and if anyone knows where I might find a copy I would appreciate it.

Anyway, I still haven't figured out whose house was actually the one featured in the photos. There are a lot of them in my subdivision. I need to look a little more closely, I guess. The main difference in these houses is the fireplace. All have either sandstone (like mine), limestone laid in a running bond pattern (like traditional brickwork), or limestone laid in a more random coursed pattern. I am fairly certain that the photo shows sandstone. Another feature that helps distinguish it is that the fireplace and carport are on the same side. Most have the fireplace on the opposite side. If these two features are correct, then I may know which home it is. I wil try to take a photo to post.

I wish the shot that gives a bit of view from the living room window were more clear, as this would help me even more. In the meantime, here is a link to one of the properties currently for sale in the neighborhood.

http://realtor.com/FindHome/HomeListing.asp?snum=14&locallnk=yes&frm=byzip&mnbed=0&mnbath=0&mnprice=0&mxprice=99999999&js=off&pgnum=2&fid=so&stype=&mnsqft=&mls=xmls&areaid=63126&poe=realtor&zp=63126&sbint=&vtsort=&sorttype=&typ=1&x=20&y=7&sid=076F6E9BC0C9C&snumxlid=1067703084&lnksrc=00001

There is a better link with more pics which I will post later....the server for that site is down. This house has a family room addition and has been re-sided over the original redwood. Notice how they list it as a "traditional ranch." Apparently modern or contemporary would just be too scary to those potential buyers!

Nate

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Postby robbhouston » Wed Oct 18, 2006 6:45 pm

...In the meantime, here is a link to one of the properties currently for sale in the neighborhood....


Cool house! There's a neighborhood very close to mine with a few houses that are along those lines. I've been planning to photograph them and add them to the gallery on my website. Just haven't had the time. I leaving out tomorrow for a 10 day working trip, so it's gonna have to continue to wait.

I wish you luck on finding original blue prints on your place. I felt like I lucked out when I was able to scan mine (she, the lady I purchased from, kept the originals for sentimental reasons...oh well, she did grow up here).

Thanks again for the info on your house and neighborhood.

--Robb
http://www.nashvillemodern.com

A little website I created to showcase my home and other MCMs in and around the Nashville TN area.

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Postby wwilber » Wed Oct 18, 2006 8:11 pm

Robb,

It would be great to see those photos when you get a chance. Also in checking out your website I noticed a couple of things:

By coincidence I am installing the exact same pendant lights in my kitchen this week and wondered how far above the countertop yours hang. I haven't decided if mine are at the right height.

Secondly, in looking at your BH & G plans I realized that there is a house very close to mine that may be identical. I forgot that you added your garage and front entrance, and looking at the original version of the plans, I am almost certain that the house near me is the same. I will get a photo for you if I can!

Nate

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Postby robbhouston » Thu Oct 19, 2006 8:48 am

When I finish my traveling (which is pretty much done after this 10 day run) I'll photograph those homes and put them on my site. It's gonna be nice to NOT be traveling (soon)...uugghh!

Regarding the lights...the very bottom of the pendant is 35" off the counter. I didn't want to be bumping my head if I leaned over the counter. And we use that counter a ton for preparing food.

Would love to see photos of the home your talking about. Would be an amazing coincidence if it were just like ours!

Well, I'm off to begin my trip within the hour...see ya'll later...!

--Robb
http://www.nashvillemodern.com

A little website I created to showcase my home and other MCMs in and around the Nashville TN area.

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wwilber
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Postby wwilber » Thu Oct 19, 2006 12:19 pm

Just added some additional photos with shots of the inside as well. I still have a lot of work to do and realized just how much as I was taking these pictures.

http://pg.photos.yahoo.com/ph/nathanwilber@sbcglobal.net/my_photos

Potos are in the "My house" album.

Also includes photo of home featrued in Better Homes and Gardens as it appears today. It is just down the street from me!

Nate

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Postby robbhouston » Thu Oct 19, 2006 1:39 pm

Hey hey...the tour bus I'm on has wireless internet...Love it!

First off, your house looks awesome. Great interior shots. We've done a ton to ours, but yet to even get artwork on the walls (mostly because I have a specific plan for that, and have yet to under take the project). But, your place is so very finished looking. Great work! Your pendant lights look nice, BTW.

Regarding the house in your neighborhood that looks like ours...all I can say is...Wow! I studied that picture very carefully and it's quite possible it is the same BH&Gs plan ours was based on. If you ever have a chance, I'd love to see more photos of it. But, I understand if you don't want them running you off their property with a broom stick... :) I wonder if the folks living there are MCM enthusiast, and in what condition the place is now?

Thanks for the photos.

--Robb
http://www.nashvillemodern.com

A little website I created to showcase my home and other MCMs in and around the Nashville TN area.

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Postby wwilber » Tue Nov 14, 2006 9:41 pm

In case anyone has noticed, one of the links featuring a home for sale in my subdivision is no longer working. Some friends of ours have this home under contract. Pending their home inspection on Thursday, they will be moving in around Dec. 1st.

It is exciting to have not only our good friends, but also someone else who appreciates MCM in the neighborhood. I think some inspiration from our home as well as encouragement (their home will need some work) helped in their decision, and I know they will be happy! I will try to post some updates on their progress.

Nate

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Postby STLModern » Sat Dec 23, 2006 9:40 pm

wwilber,

Nice to here you have some friends moving in next to you. Please do keep us posted on their progress too.

Is your subdivision in Crestwood?

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wwilber
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Postby wwilber » Fri Dec 29, 2006 1:58 pm

Almost all of our subdivision is in Crestwood. Our house is one of only a few that are actually in Webster Groves, although we do have a Crestwood zip code. Rather confusing, but it is what it is. We are sort of behind and to the north east of Crestwood mall.

Our friends are coming along just fine after moving in a few weeks ago. Still lots of work to do, but one step at a time!

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Postby STLModern » Fri Dec 29, 2006 9:41 pm

I know exactly the neighborhood your talking about. We bought our Tulip table from a lady who lives on Fournier about two months ago. Awesome neighborhood. If it wasn't so far away from the Wife and I's work we would consider a home in there. If they ever have any home tours set up for your neighborhood let me know. I would love to see some of the interiors of those homes.

Dan


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