Sunday, September 21, 2014

Home Tour 2014

My husband and I made our annual trip to my favorite home tour in a lovely historic neighborhood yesterday, and as usual it did not disappoint. We were joined by a couple of good friends this year, and we all had such fun oohing and aahing over all the details. There were six homes on the tour, including an industrial-style loft.

My favorite home on the tour, a 1944 bungalow, is one that I didn't photograph the outside of because the exterior was rather plain and uninteresting. I didn't have my hopes up for the inside, but boy was I wrong! I fell in love with the layout, the decorating and the art. Sadly, interior photos are not allowed on this tour, a rule that is strictly enforced. Sorry, I know how much better this post would be with interior shots, but I'll do my best to describe some of the highlights.

The standout feature in my favorite home (not pictured) was the master bedroom, just off the main living space, with a step up into the room and a pocket door for privacy. The first thing you see is a modern black canopy bed covered in white linens with a large, dramatic black and white photograph directly over the head of the bed. The entire space is beautifully lit to highlight the photograph by Thomas Joshua Cooper, one of the most celebrated and distinctive landscape photographers in the world today. Many other large-scale black and white photos by Cooper, framed in groups of four, are hung throughout the home. The house has great lighting as well, including a modern mercury glass ceiling fixture in the living room, and curvy, sculptural wooden veneer pendants in the bedroom and dining room.

Another home I loved is the historic bungalow below (there's my hubby on the porch). Built in 1903, this house had tons of charm with its original wood floors, original tiled fireplaces, paneled walls and intricately detailed windows. I loved this house both from an architectural and decorating perspective. Over the years, the second story had become a rental unit with an external door on the side and stairs to a separate entrance. During the course of three renovations, the stairs were removed and the home returned to a single family dwelling. The most recent renovation retained the home's original footprint.

Here is detail of the window on the upper floor. This house had a great color scheme and period light fixtures. Another unique aspect of this home was the extensive collection of antique paintings, some dating to the 1600s. Of particular interest to me was a dark powder room that I was dying to photograph. The dramatic black and white chevron wallpaper was contrasted by a huge, dark antique dresser and ornately carved mirror that had been converted to a vanity with a sit-on-top white basin. In a little alcove above the toilet hung an antique painting in an ornate gold frame with an attached picture light. While the room is not what I might choose to live with on a daily basis, I loved it for its drama, uniqueness and reflection of the owners' personality.

Here's a peek into the back yard of this home. I love the arbor and gate, and that sweet garage!

The next house is new construction, obviously. The lot had a small brick ranch on it when the owners bought the property. They tore down the house and built this home, which the tour guide book states was designed to fit into the neighborhood and its historic past. I'm not sure that was achieved, and the exterior is too symmetrical in my opinion, but the inside of this home is wonderful. It's completely modern with a grey and white color scheme throughout. Parts of it were too sterile for my taste (though I think the owners are still getting settled in). Upstairs, the master suite is amazing. The first thing you see through its doorway is a built-in beverage refrigerator and coffee station. Turn the corner and you enter a very large room with a wonderful screened-in porch off of it, fully furnished with sofas, coffee table and gas fireplace. The master bathroom is spectacular! It has heated marble floors, a gorgeous freestanding soaking tub, an enormous glass-walled, marble-tiled shower with I don't know how many shower heads and jets, a double sink vanity with low-profile rectangular basins and a separate water closet. This home was stunning and quite fun to tour. The garage, below, has a separate living space, but was not open to the tour.

The next home, a 70-year-old bungalow, was also on the tour. The front of the home was not changed when the owner remodeled, but space was added to the back half of the house and upstairs. In the master bedroom on the second floor are two doors that open and overlook a large great room and kitchen below, secured by wire railing (a little scary, but cool). A beautiful porch off the back of the second story was also a wonderful space. The lovely kitchen had marble counters, a waterfall-style marble island and high-end appliances.

So there are the descriptions of four of the six homes we toured, with photos of three of them. Every time I visit this neighborhood, I like to take photos of other charming homes we pass. Enjoy the next three houses, which were not on the tour, but I had to include them because they're so cute. Please share your thoughts of these homes and which ones you like best. Thanks for visiting!


  1. Lovely exteriors. The last bungalow is my favorite :-)

  2. Wow! That was such a lovely tour! The bungalows all look gorgeous. I'm with you on the arbor gates for the first home. The third to the last one would have to be my favorite, though. There's something about its curb appeal that really attracts me. Anyway, thank you for giving us a tour! I hope everyone is in the best of health!

    Leonard George @ Remax

  3. That looks like a great home tour in a really beautiful neighbourhood. (I love the HUGE trees!) I'm with Leonard - I like the third to last best of all.

    I'm not sure about the new construction, though. I sort of like the garage better than the house. Something about the combination of the gray window frames with the white moldings puts me off, maybe white on white would have been nicer? Who am I to judge though? Those are such hard (and very subjective) choices to make.

    Nonetheless, they are all beautiful homes, each with undeniable character! Thanks for sharing!


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