MCM timecapsule w/ googie kitchen.

palimpsestJuly 23, 2014

Lest anybody think I sit here all day on GW, let me explain. They are installing a new HVAC system and new plumbing in the entire house--almost nothing will be original. I have a toilet attached to a piece of plywood in the middle of a space partly enclosed by plastic serving the second floor, and a 90% finished bath in the basement. I took off some work, I am also on semester break, I have to be here but I can't really do anything productive, so I am bored out of my mind and also feel like I should be actually doing something "important". I feel my life ticking away.

I found this house in the listings.

I think it's about $385K through FoxRoach

The Kitchen is kinda cool but it has a dysfunctional layout.

I think this room is spectacular:

I copied this picture in BW because the color choice actually distracts from the features


This post was edited by palimpsest on Wed, Jul 23, 14 at 13:34

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Oh my. This is divine

    Bookmark   July 23, 2014 at 1:44PM
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I'm THRILLED that you're on semester break and are "forced" to instruct via GW due to boredom. :-) I always learn so much from your posts. No judgment about "not having a life." LOL!

What does "googie" mean?

    Bookmark   July 23, 2014 at 2:00PM
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Looked it up and found "Googie" architectural style. Now I get it.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2014 at 2:05PM
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I would live here but would have to replace the chandeliers over the two dining tables. I really like all the floors, well except the ones that are carpeted.

Your life, right now, is to keep us entertained. Keep up the good work. :)

    Bookmark   July 23, 2014 at 2:39PM
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Annie Deighnaugh

Ok, you teased me with the b&w bedroom, now show me the color...

    Bookmark   July 23, 2014 at 3:14PM
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Okay, but the color, faux finish, and goofy valances are sort of a misstep in this house.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2014 at 3:29PM
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I'm happy that you have time to post as I find your posts quite interesting. That said, I dislike everything about this house. I'd gut it. (Ducking as all of the MCM lovers throw their fluorescent light tubes and ugly wood paneling at my head.)

    Bookmark   July 23, 2014 at 3:34PM
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Well of course then, you wouldn't buy it:)

There are plenty of things that would make me pass on it as well, I think. I don't like glowing grid ceilings like in the bathrooms. I love the Idea of both bathrooms but the black mottled wall tile and the fluorescent yellow tile aren't things that I would find easy to live with

The kitchen has a really dysfunctional layout. It has very specific appliances (small fridge, linear cooktop on a 15" or 18" deep counter, 24" ovens) that would be almost impossible to replace even if you could live with the layout.

Generally the house has too strong a personality for my furniture and other tastes to fit in. I think the TV room and the Vanity area are beautiful for what they are, but they can't be anything else.

But I don't think that gutting it is the answer either. It will never ever look like anything else because the entire arrangement of the house: the shape of the rooms, the window placement, everything--announces what it is and any attempt to drastically alter it would be like a handsome woman of a certain age having a lot of bad plastic surgery and shopping at Forever 21. I just won't work.

Someone is either going to have to embrace it --which may include a complete remodel of the kitchen in a sympathetic way--or completely pass.

I can almost guarantee that if someone messes with it too much it will end up an uglier house.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2014 at 3:50PM
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You're right, Palimpsest. I would never buy it. When I said I would gut it, though, I meant that I would rebuild the interior in a way that would embrace MCM, but with better quality finishes than those that exist in the house. I'm sure doing so would over-improve the house and not make sense financially, but that's what it would take for me to like the house.

Where I live, many people buy existing houses and take them back to the studs. In most cases, the resulting house looks nothing like the original, on the facade or in the interior. I wish I had taken pictures of one or two to document the before and after as they are often amazingly different.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2014 at 6:27PM
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First thing that comes to my mind is The Brady Bunch now the theme song is running through my head. :)

Part of me likes it a lot and the other part of me hates it...what's up with that? There this thought that has really REALLY been running through my head lately especially because I am seeing so many people tearing out very lovely 80s or 90s kitchens to put in today's trending kitchen which will be(without a doubt) out of style once again in 10 years. But the thought that's been running around in my head is this: Why the heck is it that what we think is soooooo gorgeous today will be considered so ugly and out of style tomorrow. In other words, if it's pretty it's pretty right? Why does it suddenly become ugly and/or tacky? We once thought a pink bathroom was the bomb but now, not so much. I think it has a lot to do with trying to keep up with the Joneses.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2014 at 6:42PM
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I used to hate anything associated with this style, once I was on my own. Total shabby chic wannabe in the day! Now, I just love the flashback to my grandparents' house in Tulsa. She had some great pieces of that vintage, which I've appropriated through the years. I have both an emotional connection and an appreciation for the aesthetic, now.

The panorama of the living/dining area really caught my attention, as did the den. I wouldn't live in that time capsule, but it does make me smile with sentimentality.

I dig the...whales, fish, dolphins?... over the shower.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2014 at 6:59PM
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I LOVE that kitchen floor! That's not a pattern I've seen done before. Pal, I've been loving your [frequent] posts lately!

    Bookmark   July 23, 2014 at 7:39PM
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Googie is a new term for me, happy to learn something new! Bathrooms are my favourite bits, but the place does lack the drama and interest of some previous places you've shared. Nice looking exterior though.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2014 at 8:00PM
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"it would be like a handsome woman of a certain age having a lot of bad plastic surgery and shopping at Forever 21. It just won't work."

Quote of the day!

    Bookmark   July 23, 2014 at 8:26PM
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Arkansas_girl -- exact same thing I always wonder about - what is it that makes us love something and then dislike it later because it seems "dated."

I know this has been discussed on previous posts. Also know that one poster mentioned something about not liking the décor that you grow up with.

And that's why I'm on the search for "classic, timeless" décor choices. But those choices would also need to appeal to me and fit the layout of my house. So, sometimes I struggle with determining what that would be.

I'm starting to dislike some of the choices that I made for my home 12 years ago. Thought it was fine at the time, but now...?

I'd love to hear other theories about this. Because I don't feel the need to keep up with the Jones; so, why do I want to change décor choices?

    Bookmark   July 23, 2014 at 8:27PM
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I'll say a couple of things regarding this in no particular order:

For some people everything is fashion--a haircut, a pair of pants, a sofa, an entire house...all the same thing.

I appreciate this house as a historic document. There is a long stretch of time where I probably wouldn't have thought it was historic enough to appreciate. That is when a house like this is at its most vulnerable.

I would never have been able to build a house that was so trend driven. Not then, not now. There was a point when this house was extremely stylish. Then there was a point where it was cliché, Then it was passe. Then it was out-and-out dated. Now it's a well-preserved time capsule. It's had a lot of growing pains.

A lot of people say that everything you do will eventually be dated. I don't completely agree with this, but I would refine it to say that every room you do that is *primarily *trend *driven-- will be dated. I think you can do things that are considered fairly classic, some things that are already dated and some trends --all mixed together, and it will be much harder to call it dated.

Some people don't have their own taste. They don't have bad taste, they don't have great taste, they have someone else's taste. They have to rely on what's trendy to know what to do. The problem is, this changes.

The easiest way to avoid this is to decorate in a style that is clearly based on something antique. For the main parts of the house, for example, my mother didn't pick a piece of furniture that hadn't been designed at least 150 years before the house was built. It was probably always a little stuffy, and the whole color combination is clearly high 1980s, when it was refreshed, but the bones are set in 1800. She would have thought that this house was flashy bordering on vulgar even when it was the height of fashion. And in a lot of ways, she was probably right. As I said upthread...there is nothing you could do to this house or anything in it that would obscure it's identity. In my mother's living room all you would have to do is recover the furniture and once again you would have no idea when it was furnished, today or fifty years ago.

I don't necessarily think that flashy and vulgar is always a bad thing. But when that common flashiness is also out of style, it gets into embarrassing territory. Conservative might always be a little dull, but it rides out the changing tide a bit better.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2014 at 9:48PM
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robo (z6a)

I would definitely lightly injure someone for that tv room.

I really love the time period and would happily live in a (lightly updated and comfortable) time capsule. They keep coming up for not too much $$ in Sarasota where we vacation and I keep thinking....if only I had a spare $200k lying around! Terrazzo floors, pristine kitchens with Formica backsplash, ridiculous tile....I'd keep it all.

This post was edited by robotropolis on Wed, Jul 23, 14 at 22:33

    Bookmark   July 23, 2014 at 10:12PM
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Oh how I wish I could post pictures of my mother's house. It is so MCM. My parents designed and built it in the late 1950's. Mom has lived there ever since and almost nothing has been changed except carpets and kitchen floor, oh and the draperies. Even when she did change something, she pretty much went with the same as what had been there all along.

The house is so well built. The stonework is somewhat similar to this house. The colors in the slate walkway are the same, as is the wood paneling. It even has the same screens with the wood overlay like those at the end of the television room. The same lighting fixtures.

Like most who grew up with this style, I'm not a fan now, even though it kind of warms my heart. It just looks a bit too much like a 1950's tv show set. (Make Room for Daddy, Topper or Donna Reed). Can't you just see the housewife in heels, pearls and a frilly apron living there? Daddy coming home wearing his stetson hat? So cool.

    Bookmark   July 24, 2014 at 9:58AM
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I really like this house a lot. The only thing I couldnâÂÂt live with is the bathrooms, the kitchen countertops along with the wallpaper & foo foo kitchen valance thingyâÂÂs, donâÂÂt like the big white frig sticking out and any of the wall to wall carpets. Other than that I could live there as is (with some furniture changes). I love the outside areas as well.

    Bookmark   July 24, 2014 at 10:09AM
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Seriously wonderful and cool!! LOVE the kitchen (wonder if some of the kitchen designers are doing those dual-level peninsula/desk!) I would change the bathrooms /....

LOVE the dining set! :)

.... and I would pay the necessary additional funds to keep all of the furniture .....

    Bookmark   July 24, 2014 at 10:48AM
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I love the bones of this house and many of the finishes. I think that you could make some changes (the bathrooms) and furnish it appropriately and it would be awesome. While the kitchen isn't laid out well, it could be redone, keeping the MCM vibe and be very efficient. Love the floor! I would love to have my way with this house!

    Bookmark   July 24, 2014 at 4:00PM
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I think you could layout the kitchen cabinets in a very similar way while moving the functions around if you wanted to preserve the floor.

A built in fridge, Silestone Orange Cool quartz, and a few other changes could keep this kitchen looking almost exactly like it does with a higher level of function.

    Bookmark   July 24, 2014 at 5:00PM
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I love the glass doors pressed with leaves and butterflies. I've seen it just twice- once in a 60's house while househunting, and once on the Brady Bunch. I believe they had it in their master bedroom! I wonder if it's still available.

    Bookmark   July 24, 2014 at 6:29PM
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LetâÂÂs discuss how one could keep the foyer tile but eliminate the wall to wall carpet in the great room/family room and dining room. Hmmm what could we put there? I might lay awake pondering this dilemma. How could we flow into the kitchen and keep that floor as well?

    Bookmark   July 24, 2014 at 7:26PM
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Well -- I'm not keen on the black-and-white foyer (seems a bit traditional for this house?) -- after looking at the stone on the fireplace -- maybe trade it all in for a limestone floor or pale gray slate? Greyed wood floors???

Just a thought .....

Here is a link that might be useful: Pinterest -- stone floors ....

    Bookmark   July 24, 2014 at 8:02PM
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Maybe travertine floors?

Here is a link that might be useful: Pinterest -- Travertine floors

    Bookmark   July 24, 2014 at 8:04PM
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The Italian provincial furniture and the foyer paneling-with-matched sliding closet doors would be the first to go. I loved the exterior front and kitchen floor.

    Bookmark   July 24, 2014 at 8:13PM
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Maybe like this one in white terrazzo?

Here is a link that might be useful: White terrazo flooring

    Bookmark   July 24, 2014 at 8:17PM
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Pal, I'm with fun. Beautiful piece of property, but the house, ewwwww. It's hard to believe nothing has been done since it was built, but also obvious it 's well loved, judging by how well kept it is.

Enjoy your time off! You can 'hang' here cause we all love your posts! Now find us some homes not quite so 'lost in a time warp'.

    Bookmark   July 24, 2014 at 8:41PM
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These houses were pretty much made for carpeting in the living room and bedrooms, but another thing that a number of midcentury designers--including some that have books written about them--would have done, would've been to sheathe the floors in pure white or pure black vinyl. Which is very hard to come by these days. You might be able to achieve the same thing with poured epoxy.

    Bookmark   July 24, 2014 at 9:09PM
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Teacats, before buying this house and while house hunting I was so dreaming of finding a home with original Terrazzo floors. I only found one. Unfortunately the house hadnâÂÂt been maintained much at all if ever. It costs big bucks to repair Terrazzo around here in Florida. There is often settling somewhere in the floor and of course all the nailed holes from carpet strips. Terrazzo was very common at one time but you would need a gun to live in the areas where it has survived, much of the time anyway.

Pal, I will have to do a search on what white vinyl look pored epoxy floor looks like. Never heard of it! I like learning new things. Thanks!

    Bookmark   July 24, 2014 at 9:37PM
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Something like this. I've seen residential floors but couldn't easily find a picture.

    Bookmark   July 24, 2014 at 9:46PM
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Ugh, too shiny! Can you get that in an off white satin? IâÂÂm feeling this house and imaging me there. I canâÂÂt do wall to wall carpet because of allergies and because I hate it.

    Bookmark   July 24, 2014 at 9:58PM
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ravencajun Zone 8b TX

Amazing how well kept it is, someone really loved this home. I wish I had a few items from it.

I have a MCM home which has Terrazzo floors in some areas, including in the large atrium. I wish it had more, probably did when first built. It is very unique, the pieces in the floor are real natural stone and some are fossils. I love it. Thankfully it is in excellent condition, I doubt it could be repaired today.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2014 at 2:57AM
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Yes, satin is more common than the shiny but most of the pictures I could find were beige garage floors or operating room floors.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2014 at 9:40AM
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Like carsonheim, I copied this nugget:
"any attempt to drastically alter it would be like a handsome woman of a certain age having a lot of bad plastic surgery and shopping at Forever 21. I just won't work."

Classic. In what part of the country would such a home sell for $385K? I'm in Southern California and that beauty would be 8 figures.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2014 at 11:53AM
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    Bookmark   July 25, 2014 at 12:51PM
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Thanks, forboystoo

    Bookmark   July 25, 2014 at 2:10PM
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Elkins Park is an unincorporated suburb north of Philadelphia. This is probably in line for a time-capsule condition house in this suburb.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2014 at 2:15PM
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